I found the question of where to start as an artist after art school an easy one. I had a desire to capture something about now; the present moment in the city. My camera seemed an obvious place to start. I picked up my camera and took pictures. Cartier Bresson labelled it the “the decisive moment.” I wanted to capture a split second of an ever-changing mad rush. By doing so, I found a way to make art; I discovered a painters approach to street photography.
My walk with a camera started with no intention of where I was going; not in my steps and not in my art. Each time I went out with my camera, I spent more time reflecting on the photographs I took. Looking for a breadcrumb to follow.
Out of the hundreds of photographs, I knew there was a way forward. My own unique way forward. I know I was interested in something significant, but it was impossible to put it into words. I was interested in elements of form, of architecture and individuals, and formal qualities of a composition. Over time this vision developed into a kind of transcendence. A nowness of this specific point in time. Of my time and our time.
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My camera works an extension of me, I use it as a tool to capture my artistic vision. I am looking for the right something. When the right individual with the right background, in the right composition, comes together in the frame. I hope to capture an emotion and feeling of being there. To add a sense of place.
When I am out taking photographs is not essential for me to me to communicate with the people I am photographing. I try to be invisible, I don’t draw attention to myself. I very rarely use a direct likeness of the individuals in my paintings, only sometimes in my drawings. If I was ever asked what I was doing which I never have, I don’t think people would understand. How can I explain I am capturing the randomness of life. This quest to me feels unique.
Related links; A painters approach to street photography
I paint what I photograph rather than exhibit the photographs. The are many reasons why. I have become less interested in narratives and less interested in the details of the image. I want to abstract something out of those moments. To strip away the visual noise, to look for something beneath, where people and the city emerge in a meaningful and surprising way. At the end of the day, we all see and notice these fleeting moments. I am trying to ask what does it say? What does it all mean?
A fated poise, a combination of colour, texture and cut of the clothes translates into our culture. Street photography can become quite obsessive. It takes dedication to capture that moment. That purely visual moment. It is gone so quickly there is hardly any time to capture it. I see it all being about chance. An accidental chance. In that accident, it says something about being here on this rock in this moment of time, that I don’t think can be said in any other way.