Here but not here.

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There is a beautiful difference between the physical and mental presence of someone photography is best at depicting. Sure you can get there in painting etc but purely because of it’s basic properties photographic image will depict that contrast better.
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People lost in their inner worlds still are physicly present in front of the lens, but their body language will show some of their mental state – facial expressions, body posture etc. How accurate and true that correlation is – that is a different matter. But we are not detectives nor trying to be mind readers here – to be honest I don’t care what the woman in the second image thought about at this instant – in the image she gives a certain impression I find worthy of showing. That is all I need, as my concern is the image, not really strangers on the street.
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Two smoking women, both lost in rather somber thoughts, and a young girl with obviously different sense of fashion, none of them looking as being fully aware of their own ‘here and now’. They are here, present, but not here in spririt. One frame, four different spaces. Add to that the photographers space, and your own one, and suddenly we have quite a crossroad.
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The first image though is a different case. The brutal yellow text has been painted in the spot the beggars usually sat – of course the viewer doesn’t know it unless I provide a caption, which I will not do. The bright and still clean letters are in stark contrast to the worn textures of the¬†surrounding¬†surfaces and in a strange way evoke the image of the homeless person – by the principle of contrast again, in a slightly roundabout way, they show the homeless beggar better than a portrait ( which you will never see me taking by the way).
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edit (April 7, 2013):
The first image has been used in a Londonist post about suspended coffee here.
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edit (May 9, 2013):
Recently the text has been removed from the Old Street station’s entrance. Probably not much to do with my image, but just thought I should let you know.


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