Been off social media for a little while, and now I can share the reason. I have released my first photozine! It started as a photo essay I was working on about the town where we're living in the UK. Brentford is a lovely little place, in the midst of a residential boom. Apartment complexes are springing up everywhere around town, and it's exciting to see the area renew itself. Yet, when you walk around the area, you see signs that Brentford has seen this type of renaissance before. Like the rings of a tree, buildings all through the area represent the great hope (sometimes unrealized) of generations past. I found it fascinating to contrast those older buildings to the new ones and see what similarities there are.
What made the project even more fun for me... I challenged myself to shoot the entire thing using only peel-apart packfilm on an old Polaroid Land Camera. Instant film is a fickle medium, but the results can be more than worth the effort. Bleaching and scanning the negatives from the packfilm created a look that I instantly fell in love with (no pun intended). Sadly this once dominant form of photography is about to die out entirely. The last manufacturer of this type of film, Fuji, has stopped production - meaning these packs (and the handful more I have squirreled away in the fridge) are the last of it.
The title of the book and the focus are on Brentford, but really I think the story these images tell could be about so many towns around the world. How communities work to revitalize themselves, and the successes and failures therein are a universal story. I'm very proud to have used a once-promising camera and film combination that, despite its impending doom, is still beloved by many to tell this story.
The zine is elegantly designed by my wife Sarah Mirza, who did an amazing job taking this photo essay and crafting it into something really beautiful. Currently the zine is available in the UK only. If there is enough interest in the US (either drop me a line - or use the "Contact" button here or on the shop page) I will arrange for it to be available there as well.
If you're in the UK - head over and take a look
(or click on the "Shop" button anywhere on the site)