Powerful Photos of Amy Winehouse Show Her at Her Healthiest, Happiest and Most Peaceful
A new book of intimate photographs taken by her friend and photographer Blake Wood show the singer at the height of her fame.
It's hard to believe that just 10 years ago, Amy Winehouse was at the peak of her career. In 2008, wrestling with global fame and success and her own personal demons, Back to Black had been just been released, and with it came a string of Grammy wins, chart success and the inevitable hard partying and paparazzi nightclub skirmishes that always followed.
2008 was also the year Amy met 22-year-old photographer Blake Wood, whose new book, Amy Winehouse, is an intimate snapshot to the singer's inner life, one she hid from tabloid photographers and fans. "I remember feeling so connected to her voice", Blake explains. "And so there was this pull in me, that if she ever entered my life, I wanted to be there for her, like she had been there for me."
After their initial meeting, when they were introduced by Kelly Osborne, the pair became inseparably close friends, banding together to evade the paparazzi who camped outside of Amy's Camden flat almost relentlessly until her death in 2011, aged just 27.
Blake's book, released on 27th July, is a testament to their friendship, and also a touching memorial to Amy's life. While there are no shortage of photos of the singer falling out of clubs, looking drunk or high or otherwise worse for wear, these pictures choose to remember her differently. "I had no interest in taking photos of her having health crises or doing drugs", Blake explains in the book. "That, to me, was not who she was at her core. I thought it was unfair, and it had already been done, and it was unkind."
Whether she's smiling on a beach in St Lucia, staring out of shot as she relaxes in a recording studio or adjusting her trademark eyeliner in a pub mirror, Amy seems totally relaxed, totally herself, totally at peace with the experience. "She was love in a human form. I truly loved her", writes Blake.
"She was somebody who embodied love in the purest way. She really helped people around her to connect to that goodness and that love in them. This work lived in my closet. I had to shut it away because it was too painful to look at. But now, I want people to see the person that I knew -- that light, that brilliant, loving light."
This article originally appeared on i-D UK.