Street photography is not always done alone. Back in the Sixties Diane Arbus, Gary Winnogrand, and William Klein used to bump into each other taking photographs on the streets of New York. Here at The 8Street we have made it less about bumping into each other on the streets of New York and more about organizing ourselves into a tight group of friends, booking regular trips abroad, hanging out, drinking cheap beer and good wine and occasionally taking photos. More than occasionally really. Unless of course you’re Nick Tucker and Matt Tyler. Then it’s less than occasionally. But sometimes those are the breaks. This year it was decided by a secret committee of gaunt dead-eyed men, sitting and smoking in a darkened room lit by slats of weak sunlight falling through wooden blinds that 10 British photographers working in one city for five days was too many. Two would have to stand down. Polls were taken, votes were counted, whisky was topped up, strange haunting music drifted up from the basement possibly via the air vents, and it was decided that Nick and Matt would have to sit this week out, banished to a series of warm and friendly cocktail bars around Barcelona.
They took it stoically and with good grace.
The rest of the gang set about the task with renewed vigour. Happy that they had escaped the committee’s cold, Kafkaesque cocktail punishment.
This year our numbers were depleted by the absence of Sachin Khona and Alexis Jaworski and then swelled again by Dominique and Liam YorkPlaceStudios. A close brother and sister team known as The White Stripes of street photography. Mostly because Liam is an excellent drummer and Dom claims she wrote Seven Nation Army.
The trip was divided up into days, which were in turn given identifying names such as Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Much like the regular nomenclature of any given weekday it turns out, entirely coincidentally. Within these ‘days’ our intrepid band of roaming photographers would slither off in pairs, hugging the walls and shadows of Barcelona and only meeting up again regularly for beer, coffee, tapas, and alright then.. one more beer, and another patatas bravas. Stealth was important. Everyone worked noiselessly and with great diplomacy. All except Matt Long who stood in the middle of town booming out sea shanties from somewhere inside the dark cavernous fur of his lustrous black beard.
By the end of the week all eight of our working photographers had collated possibly our strongest selection of images yet, while Nick and Matt T had pickled their livers and award Pax49 Best Cocktail Bar.
Here in front of you then are the fruits of our labour.
Good day to you.