Friday Night Lives

Friday Night Lives : Photos from the Town, the Team, and After

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In 1988, when Robert Clark was in his early twenties, he traveled to Odessa, Texas, to create a visual element for a book about a high school football team. That book was Buzz Bissinger's Friday Night Lights-the chronicle of a season with the Permian Panthers, one of the state's winningest teams of all time.

About twenty photos appeared in Bissinger's book, but Clark shot 137 rolls of film during his time with the Panthers. Friday Night Lives collects dozens of the never-before-seen images, taking us back to the team, the city, and that dramatic season. The archival photos, published here on the thirtieth anniversary of the publication of Bizzinger's bestseller, capture intimate moments among the players and their families and classmates, as well as the wider world of Odessa.

Now the players have grown up. Friday Night Lives also includes Clark's portraits of key Panthers figures at a later age, documenting complex lives of beauty and struggle. Boobie Miles, the star fullback sidelined by injury, is here, along with Coach Gaines and others. In his heartfelt foreword, best-selling author Hanif Abdurraqib describes how Clark's photos rehumanize the players, reminding us of the truth of their young lives before their stories became nationally known in print, film, and television.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 192 pages
  • 216 x 279mm
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • English
  • b&w photos
  • 1477321195
  • 9781477321195

Table of contents

Foreword by Hanif Abdurraqib
First Half
Second Half

#20 Mike Winchell
#35 Boobie Miles
#85 Brian Chavez
#62 Ivory Christian
#76 Jerrod McDougal
#26 Don Billingsley
Coach Gaines

Afterword by Robert Clark
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Review quote

"[An] impressive illustrated volume...This is a fitting coda for fans of the book and show, and anyone with an interest in the rural America of a bygone era will want to take a look." * Publishers Weekly * "[An] outstanding portfolio...a book that belongs in every football fan's collection." * Kirkus, Starred Review *
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About Robert Clark

Robert Clark is a longtime contributor to National Geographic and other magazines. He shot the photos for the original edition of Friday Night Lights and has published the photobooks Evolution: A Visual Record, First Down Houston: A Year with the Houston Texans, Feathers: Displays of Brilliant Plumage, and Image America, the first photobook shot solely with a cellphone camera.
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