The sixties was a great time to be growing up in London. There was a restlessness in
the air. Everything was in a state of flux, fashion, music, morals, art, religion,
politics. Established ideas about almost everything were being questioned and
turned on their head. It was an exhilarating time to be a teenager.
Against this backdrop my own search for answers led me to photography. At the
time, it seemed like every other young person was looking for a medium in which to
express their feelings to this fast changing world. Music, fashion, art and
literature were the chosen genres. It was almost impossible to sit still and not react to
the events of the time.
These photographs were created in that heady atmosphere, inspired by the will to do
something in response to everything that was happening at the time.
From the very first day I peered through the viewfinder of a Nikon I knew I was
looking at a different world. Everything was the same, but somehow, now
everything was different, more interesting. I had discovered the means to see things
in a new way. Now it was all about shapes, shadows, darkness and light. People,
buildings, streets, shops, trees, sunrise, sunset, all were now seen through a new pair
of eyes. They became the components for the making of images intended to stir
deep emotions inside me, better than words could ever do.
It had a profound effect on me at the time. Here was the perfect means for me to
decipher my confused thoughts into some ordered form: images, which I hoped
would show others how I felt about the world around me. Here was a medium that
was quick and easy, but in the right hands was capable of producing thought
provoking images that pulled at the heartstrings just as much as any other art form
Photography short circuits the creative process. The starting point is the end
product. Painters can invent things. Photographers have to use the ordinary and
make it look unique. Technique takes days to master, not years. The eye sees, the
brain decides, the film records. It’s naked honesty with minimal human intervention.
That was the appeal for me. I took photographs because I wanted to capture images
that moved me and I hoped that they would have the same effect on others.
Here are those images. Split second decisions, made on the fly, in the street. A
frozen moment of a passing idea, made all those years ago.
Anthony Green 2009