Calling cards were popular among a number of 1970s subcultures, including street gangs (previously) and CB radio enthusiasts. When two operators met off the airwaves and in real life, they called it "eyeballing." William Hogan and David Titlow collected these fun cards for their new book Eyeball! Cards, out next week.
Via British Journal of Photography, the authors discussed the challenges of finding the cards and photgraphing their owners:
"I found a lot of the people were quite old, quite a lot of people had died. It was quite difficult to get hold of them," he says. "I started with my friend Simon; his parents were Sugarbeet and Fruit Cake. They let me photograph them. I found a few more people in my town but it was really difficult. Lots of people were in their 70s and 80s who weren't keen on being photographed."
Others were reticent because they were fearful of repercussions, because CB Radio was illegal when it first started. He found he might sit and talk with people for hours and learn a lot, but then not be able to convince them to be photographed. "Sometimes I met with an initial kind of 'Wow, I love it, I remember this, it's brilliant' and as soon as I said can I come round and photograph you, meet you, have a chat? they all clammed up," he says, a little disappointed.
Here's the book cover, designed to evoke the cards chronicled: