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Statement

I am particularly interested in the kind of images that I could not have imagined would have existed until a fraction of a second before I see them. The sort of pictures that would be very difficult to take again, the ones that you would never want to take again anyway.

Walking, talking and being open to chance is how I like to work. The various theories about wandering, derive, psychogeography and flaneurism do interest me but I have no desire to totally understand them – because a total understanding of the process might then spoil it.

This approach to photography seems to me exactly what cameras are best suited to be used for: it is a kind of raw documentary, and it sits somewhere between the pre-conceptualised use of photography to produce art at one end, and at the other end, objective photojournalism.

The integrity of the image is important to me: I am looking for genuine moments so I do not set up specific shots, direct people or do any serious retouching. Engineering a ‘situation’ and then photographing what happens within that situation is as far as I wish to go in terms of setting up images. Using existing and available light is also a key part of my image making process.

Deciding on the treatment, themes and narrative in the pictures, which might then define them as a project, mostly comes later (sometimes years later) during the editing. How the images are eventually going to be presented does not concern me too much during the period when they are being taken.

What often influences my work is history and culture, sometimes my own and sometimes specific periods – particularly the ancient and late 19th/early 20th century history and culture. Other influence comes from some of the theories and concepts of the Surrealists and Situationists art movements, and also illustration and writing, particularly that of Aubrey Beardsley and J. K. Huysmans respectively: work that is based in reality but then radically developed and presented back as fiction.