Yesterday I went to help the Anesis organisation with their weekly food handout. Dean O’Brien, who informed me about this project, introduced me to the main contributor to the christian charity, Kervin. When Dean and I arrived there was already about a hundred people standing out under the ring road waiting for Kervin and the team to arrive with the vans full of food. I noticed that there was a huge amount of Romanian women and their children there. Once the tables had all been set up with hot drinks, cakes, family bags, fruit and vegetables, Dean and I got … Continue reading Anesis

Change of Pace

So, after speaking to my tutor, Caroline Molloy, about my project I concluded that going with the absence of the rough sleepers is the best way forward, making a more poetic document of their existence. This is indeed more abstract, so I then have to choose how I deliver this message to my audience. Here are my more successful photographs. I would like to reshoot some of them; however, I do keep returning to the same locations to find subtle differences from what has been left behind. For example, the Penguin wrapper is exactly where Jay sits under the flyover … Continue reading Change of Pace

Home to the City

So here is a collection of some of the places in Coventry where the rough sleepers spend their time. I can’t say that I like all of these photographs. I think that these places are so familiar to me that I find them difficult to photograph without any emotional connection. This is similar to what I discussed in my essay on portraiture. The more the photographer knows about a particular sitter, more can be revealed. However, because I have a very limited knowledge of the rough sleepers’ personal stories these places do not mean anything to me. I find myself … Continue reading Home to the City

Unsafe in the City

Today I went round to sites where I know rough sleeper go throughout the day and during the night to photograph the landscape. However, I saw three rough sleepers today, one of which was Jay. I spoke to him and he said that he couldn’t talk, he had just been threatened and he was feeling very paranoid. I think the fact I was holding my camera didn’t ease him so I decided to leave him be and I walked on. With the three I saw, I photographed them from a distance, kind of like a peeping Tom. This has made … Continue reading Unsafe in the City

Beat Streuli @IKON Gallery

Last night was the launch of Streuli’s exhibition of his street photography named ‘New Street’. Spread over two floors there was a collection of 3 metre tall prints, 3 metre tall projections, 90s television sets and flat screens. The multimedia still and moving images gave a great aesthetic to the work, giving it movement and portraying movement of time. On the first floor was his series between Sydney, Brussels, New York, São Paulo, Guangzhou and Cape Town. These were 3 metre tall prints which were attached together like a film strip. For me this indicated a continuum of a narrative in … Continue reading Beat Streuli @IKON Gallery

Shelter-Jodi Cobb

When looking in ‘The Way Home – Ending Homelessness in America’ many of the series of works in there are black and white and portraits. Although portraiture is something I would like to do in the long term, in terms of this short project where I am now going to be going onto landscapes first, I found Jodi Cobb was the only photographer taking a similar approach. As I met Miami’s homeless people, I found myself intrigues by the edger of their lives, the grace notes of survival: a touch, a toy, a picture on the wall. The details dignify … Continue reading Shelter-Jodi Cobb

True Stories

Cyrenian’s have a ‘True Stories’ page on their website to which I have found some information on their success stories and locations: Will is a 39 year old entrenched rough sleeper with an alternating class A drug addiction to Heroine and Crack and alcohol addiction.  Will spent three years sleeping rough in the doorway of a church in Coventry city centre, sleeping there whatever the weather, with no contact with any agency […]Although the Rough Sleeper service had tried to engage with Will on a number of occasions he had always kindly refused to even come in and take advantage … Continue reading True Stories

Keeping up to date with the Cyrenians, yesterday Forces REGROUP UK was established, supporting homeless veterans by a former homeless veteran, Peter. On Facebook I noticed they included his story.   “After a 12-year military career I found myself living on the streets suffering from mental health issues. I sought help from the NHS mental health service, but at the time, they were unable to deal with many of the trauma based issues faced by veterans. I was released from hospital, but the aftercare was minimal. Eventually I turned to drugs and alcohol to help me deal with my demons. … Continue reading

Making a decision

Because of other commitments, coupled with having difficulties when working through a charity whose priorities are more important than a photography student’s interest, I have had to change my approach to the homeless. I thought that I would run into this problem; this project, as I want it to turn out, is going to take a lot more time. So then I can allow myself time to gain access to the lives of the homeless, vesting in their trust before photographing them and their possessions. I am now in contact with Dean O’Brien who volunteers for Kervin Julien who helps … Continue reading Making a decision