28 Aug The streets I see
Source: Charlene Winfred
“What genre of photography do you specialize in?” was the first question.
I hmmed and hawwed on the keyboard: typed, tried words out for fit, deleted and started over.
My relationship with this thing I do has been doubt-ridden from the beginning. I call myself a street photographer because its mode – harvesting unscripted pictures from whatever/wherever the situation – describes how i work. But my work itself isn’t razor sharp like those whose images define the genre.
I am an ardent admirer of street photography’s many gods, among them Alex Webb, Natelle Autio, Trent Parke, Matt Stuart,Helen Levitt, Jesse Marlow, Elliot Erwitt, and recently, the women whom I haven’t read about in its scrolls: Sabine Weiss, Xyza Bacani, Elena Maiorova, and any/all of these amazing photographers, whose work I’m still getting to know (thank you, creator of list!). Each of these photographers brings an entire narrative to a single image, which is an astounding thing, when you consider how limiting one frame is. We see life as a nonstop video roll overlaid by filters of an evolving life. To condense all that into one picture, in the right light, frame and depth of field, to evoke wonder, shock, awe, transmit clarity about character, place and time… there’s something miraculous about it all.
Me? I mostly take pictures of people from buses and trains.
I’m compelled to do it from recognition, a kind of un-mutually-acknowledged tribe forming. I’ve spent most of my life making long commutes on public transport. While I am
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