I tried to be a street photographer many times and failed miserably. I’d wander about with cameras I’d seen other people use in search of something special.
But I’d never come home with any pictures.
In 2016, I was writing a script about growing up (you know, one of those cliché coming-of-age-first-time-director-films that never get made) and had started counselling (after years of patient people around me recommending it. Sorry guys!). I was thinking about myself for the first time and gradually learned a few things that helped me to see the world differently.
I’d walk about my local area with my iPhone and just look around with all this on my mind. I learned that if you really look, you’ll see we’re all connected and everyone and everything in every moment is special.
I started to come home with lots of pictures.
I’m not a ghost outside. I exist on the street. I feel at home out here. Whether someone knows I’m taking a picture or not, I try to engage. “Nice hat”, “I like your shirt”. I’m just going about my business as a resident, not a photographer. The moments I like to capture are the ones when people are unaware. I like freedom and there’s not a pose for that.
When I was a kid, I’d never come home for dinner. I was always out. On Saturdays we’d go to town – the high street has always been the most thrilling place for me. Pre-Internet, it was essential. Pre-scroll, it was a gateway to the world. A place to dream.
I guess that’s what Streethearts is. A journal of me watching my world go by with all the stuff in between – from living someone else’s dream to beginning to live my own.