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 2017 by Alastair Searles. ©

Spotlight

June 21, 2017

My intention in this sequence of images is to present an individualised and personal form of urban street photography. My location is a rich source of subject matter with its variety of pedestrians, buildings and colours. The essence of street photography is a type of spontaneity images which represent an impulsive, instinctive decision to capture naturalistic often fleeting scenes. Such scenes nonetheless have great semiotic resonance is what draws the eye and prompts the act of capturing. In the spirit of spontaneity, I have tried to avoid all artifice or deliberate composition beyond the choice of alleyways as unique vantage points from which to capture the motion of passing people. On a practical level the alleyway vantage provides a very natural form of framing; the contrast between deep shadow and daylight creates a sort of spotlight. The characteristics of the alleyway – odd shaped stone steps and 16th Century brickwork are suggested but down played in contrast to the vibrant coloured backdrop of shop-fronts and sharply defined human figures caught in motion in the lit square. On a semiotic level this vantage emphasises the slightly voyeuristic nature of street photography- the suggestion that the camera is catching individuals in unguarded moments, unaware that they are being observed. The perspective of the alleyway also provides a natural journey for the eye into the depth of the image, creating a visual tension between the two-dimensional nature of the print and the three-dimensional suggestion of perspective created by the narrowing walls. This creates a sense of the camera closing in on, and freezing the captured figure.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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