The streets is where I am at these days, from day to day. It is actually where I have learned to slow down and really think about my work. It is a process of finding out why and how photography affects us. It is where I see pain and struggling daily. It is where I am met with fear and ignorance. It is where I am threatened. But it is also where some of my most rewarding personal work comes from. There is controversy about the rights of privacy and the honor in photographing people on the streets. My viewpoint would be a picture is only harmful to that person if in your heart and intention you are trying to harm that person. I feel like I am not doing this when I snap a shot of an interesting composition of a figure contrasted against something or the way a moment unfolds. I feel I am archiving this time and then letting others be apart of it. Now will viewers have different opinions about what they see? Sure. But bare bones, an image will evoke an emotion and it is up to the viewer to take away from it what they will. Now people approach me on the streets all the time asking, "why you take pictures of me? Why did you take a picture of that? Why DIDN'T you take a picture of THAT?" The truth is we live in a country and time where we are constantly on camera wether we like it or not. Chances are if you leave your house right now into the public, drive across town, shop at your mega mall, pick up some fast food and then finish off with a movie. You have been photographed more times than I will ever get a chance. Now what is the motive behind most of these cameras pointed at us on the daily? Social documentation, "big brother", security or rather "loss prevention" from big corporations who don't care about you. But me? I put my best effort into making sure that you will be shown how you are and as an image to be shared as a moment I thought was special.
My fascination with street photography also has something to do with my first years at UNM I was a Psychology minor with an interest in Sociology. I'm drawn to people's lives. I love imaging in up stories and details of the lives of everyday strangers. We all have a story to tell and I'm happy to hear yours. Taking photos of people on the street has also made me a better photographer along with shooting film. It has made me appreciate moment, pointed me in the direction of mastering natural light, compose more and slow me down in my style of shooting. I'd recommend it to anyone struggling creativity. Leave your computer grab a film camera or block out the LCD screen with tape and shoot 24 frames in the course of a day. Just shots you find in your everyday life or someone else's that you feel connected to. It is a good practice. I advise you to be free of any other stimulus at this time (no headphones, preferably by yourself) It will allow you to open up your senses to the world. Your ears will notice the distinct sound of your footsteps on different surfaces, your skin will taste the coolness of the air conditioning as you walk past a store, your nose will pick up on the stench of the gutter and your eyes will see light in a different way that you are used to. These are things I notice when I get off the computer from editing and take break to just walk with my camera.
Boom. So some of my early thoughts on street photography as I walk the streets, chasing the perfect light and the perfect moment.