Tell us about your artistic aesthetic
A: My aesthetic, when it comes to portraits,
is one of simplicity. I like to engage the
person directly. I like them to know they
are being photographed and to explore their
gaze. I am fascinated by the beauty to be
found in regular un-retouched humanity.
I am humbled to be able to photograph them.
Tell us how others describe your work versus
how you see it?
A: I think other people get my work. It's
not exactly complex. What surprises me is
the enthusiasm with which it is received.
It is a pleasure to inspire people with
something as simple as a street portrait.
It is twice as satisfying when people see
the folks around them anew because they
paused a moment to really see.
response to these portraits isn't very different.
I love making them and I love sharing them.
My only burden is choosing the best photograph
to show out of the dozen or so I often take
of each person.
We would like one story/example of obstacles
you have overcome or
are currently struggling with.
A: I am dumbfounded by the tunnel vision
of book publishers who have refused to pick
up the New York Streetstudio work. 20,000
portraits, easily the largest portrait collection
in the history of New York, and I can't
get in the door. I've been told by publishers
that "no one outside New York cares
about New York" and "no one buys
a book with New York in the title."
Basically, if it doesn't have sex or celebrity,
it doesn't get made. So be it, I have hundreds
of visitors a day to my websites from all
over the world. That's just fine with me.