Today we go to New York State’s capital Albany to hear from photographer and occasional BSA contributor Bob Anderson whose intense love for photography is usually expressed through natural beauty and domestic scenes but occasionally he can indulge in a true passion; street art photography. In 2013 Bob had the opportunity to meet the illustrator and street artist Phlegm who was visiting from Sheffield, a city in South Yorkshire, England. While he caught some excellent shots for BSA readers during that marathon of painting, this one stood out as his favorite of 2013.
Phlegm. Albany, NY 2013. (photo © Bob Anderson)
Watching the Process Unfold with Phlegm
~ Bob Anderson
Whether it’s a sticker, a tag, or a mural, the streets are the judge of what will stand the test of time. Sometimes it is the aesthetic or the message, or simply the placement that weighs in an efforts favor. The end result will garner a cover, a buff, or appreciation.
Not to distract from the work itself, but I find more appreciation in both the process and the artist. Yes, I want to see new work, but viewed from a computer or in real life after it’s completed, it does not carry the intensity as watching it unfold. Maybe in a completely selfish way, it’s to learn the process. Everyone has their own technique. It’s not something one is willing to share in an email or to a passer by. But if you’re willing to lug paint & ladders, stay out all night, hop fences, or sit in a dirt lot all day – you will learn something.
As for the photos. It’s easy to walk up to a finished wall and frame a nice photo – but it can still feel empty. Photos of the actual process show the evolution and effort behind the work. Creativity comes by working with whatever gear you may be able to pack in, the time and lighting given (which will never be ideal) and shooting around faces that can not be shown.
Lastly, the most important part is the people.
Well known names with no associated faces come together with random strangers.
During those countless hours late at night or under the sun in a dirty parking lot, drinks are shared, hilarious stories are told, and friendships are made.
And a wall is left standing.
Photos document the party that only a few were privileged to attend.
Get out, and get up!
Thanks to all!
Location: Albany, NY. 2013
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