richard chopping

Richard Chopping

I actually knew Richard ‘Dickie’ Chopping growing up as he was a close family friend along with his partner and renowned artist Denis Wirth-Miller who lived in Essex, England. I grew up in Hampshire and we we holidayed a few times with them in France.

Both were bon vivants, Denis a renowned artist in his own right but lived somewhat in the shadow of his great friend Francis Baco. He was the one who suggested a hole in a piece of wood with a card underneath reminiscent of a private club for the cover of ‘For Your Eyes Only’.

Dickie was a sweet man and incredible writer and author. I would have loved to have asked him about those days, although he had a troublesome relationship with Fleming. He described him as mean and miserly essentially as Dickie was a pacifist essentially, a man of botany, art and gardening.

I didn’t really know he did the Fleming covers until later in my life after his death as I was too young, which personally now, is very sad for me.

Unknown fact to many, is that up until his death he was asked by Bod Dylan’s son Jakob, who was a fan of his work, to do his album cover, but Richard died before that project ever got off the ground.

james bond coversChopping’s Original Fleming Book Covers:
From Russia with Love (1957; Jonathan Cape)
Goldfinger (1959; Jonathan Cape)
For Your Eyes Only (1960; Jonathan Cape)
Thunderball (1961; Jonathan Cape)
The Spy Who Loved Me (1962; Jonathan Cape)
On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1963; Jonathan Cape)
You Only Live Twice (1964; Jonathan Cape)
The Man with the Golden Gun (1965; Jonathan Cape)
Octopussy and The Living Daylights (1966; Jonathan Cape)
Licence Renewed (1981; Jonathan Cape)

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