Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Ode to the Isle of Thanet: Street Photography from the streets of a forgotten island

For most of the winter of 2012/13 I lived on the Isle of Thanet, in Margate to be exact. Due to the cold, I wasn't out on the street that much, but I worked when I was able and when I was in the right mental space. 

Thanet is a beautiful area, but down on its luck as "they" say. Decaying infrastructure, increasingly scarce social and other services and a general lack of energy, will or attention on the part of government, all have led to the area being very depressed. 
So, a lovely part of the world, full of people who deserve better is being allowed to decay. 

This slideshow (produced and first published some time ago) of images made while I was there is dedicated to all the people of Thanet, including my son who lives there too. 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

LONELY STREET: Street Photography slideshow of the lonely and alone on the street

The 'street' is often referred to as a 'lonely place' and it can and is that for many people. And not only the people who 'live' on the street, or work on the street or have to spend a lot of time there for one reason or another. It can also be a lonely place for the so-called ordinary person going about their shopping or other regular business. This slideshow is a collection of photographs that seemed to me to speak of loneliness, or aloneness. Of course in many instances it's not always possible to know for sure what emotions the people photographed are experiencing, but in all these photographs there is a sense of alone, or lonely; as with all good street photography, these images will I think elicit an emotional response in the viewer

I first published this video two years ago in August 2012. Thank you for watching it this time round.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

I Will Love You Till I Die: A Street Photography Slideshow

Back in November 2012 I put together a slide show of photos from an ongoing project called Two's Company. This project is about photographing on the street two people or perhaps a person and a pet, but who are actually together. Might be two lovers, two friends, a parent and child, a child and his or her dog. You name it; as long as there are two people together, then it goes in this project's folder.

A kind of subset of this project is when the photo depicts a moment with two people who are actually a couple or who appear to be. And it is these moments, these photos that make up the slideshow. As a backing track I chose The Carnival is Over sung by one of the greatest folk groups of all time in my opinion: The Seekers. It's heart wrenching and soul enriching music, this song. 

Anyway, here is the slideshow again for your enjoyment. May it give you a moment's pleasure and if it brings a tear to your eye or a warmth to your heart, then I will consider this a good day!

Monday, September 8, 2014

COME SHINE OR RAIN: Friends Share a Joke on the Street

Come Shine or Rain (Georgetown Malaysia July 2014)

Walking around downtown Georgetown in Malaysia, I came upon these three friends standing and chatting. It was a very very hot day, and with the intense sun, many people were using umbrellas to shade themselves.

Of course what stood out for me and my camera was the woman on the left who is wearing an umbrella on her dress as well as holding one up for shade. So, naturally, I made a few photographs. Then her friend on the right in the picture, saw me and my camera. She pointed at me as she told her friends. The woman in the umbrella dress turned to me with a questioning look.

I saw your dress and it looked great against the real umbrella.
She smiled but said nothing.

Her freind:
What did you say?

I liked her dress

Her friend:

It has an umbrella on it and she's holding an umbrella. It's funny

Her friend heard me but was confused. By this time I had reached the spot where they stood and I pointed at the dress and the umbrella. Both the friends looked at the dress and started pointing and laughing. What they said I don't know, as it was in Malay. But they were really having a good laugh, pointing at the dress then the umbrella and generally enjoying teasing their friend.

At this stage I discreetly withdrew with a thank you and a smile leaving the friends to share the joke

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

ART IGNORED Those who don't want to see or take action, don't look

Art Ignored (Melbourne Australia August 2014)

(the artist approaching me from behind as I walked around the artwork on the pavement) Can I ask what made you stop to look at the work?

Well I really liked it. It's a comment on homelessness right?

Yes it is. But we're worried that not many people are stopping to look. You're one of the very few who've stopped today.

Well, you know people are conditioned not to look. Anyway, (I point to the passing hordes of shoppers) look, people are too busy shopping, looking at stuff in the windows.

Yes, I guess they don't like to see do they?

Well a lot of people don't want to know or see, you're right. They're afraid that if they see they will have to do something

Well a lot of people glance out of the corner of their eye then they quickly look away.

People are afraid like I say. They think there might be someone here to grab them to sell them something or a homeless person asking for money or whatever

We've tried everything. Putting down a sign explaining what it is. But that was gone after half an hour. We put the same piece down in...(a popular part of the city)... and the whole installation was gone in twenty minutes.

Well, people don't want to know. You're an artist so you know that already.

Yes, you're right. Thanks (looking a bit dejected he started to walk away)

 Keep on with the work. It's important and remember it's not about the number of people who see and respond, it's about the quality of the response.

              I'm not sure he heard these last words from me.