Nick Turpin

There is something about the making of photographs in public places that resonates with me more than any other kind of photography. I think it simply suits my personality.

It’s nice, when taking pictures in the street, not to have to participate in any way in the stream of life passing you by. It makes me feel special to be there but not to be chatting, not to be shopping or not even to be heading for somewhere else. I feel like I am invisible to the passing crowds. This in turn leads to a loss of my sense of self, which is the finest feeling of all.

Having worked for several years both in newspapers and advertising, I am fascinated by the things that I ‘choose’ to photograph when I leave the house with my camera but without a ‘story’ or ‘brief’ to fulfill. These ‘choices’ are revealing,in some way, of who I am.

I go to the busiest, public places to discover something very personal and private. It is an inescapable truth that the resulting photographs are as much about my inner state as they are about the external world they were made in. They are all self-portraits.

It is important to me that my personal pictures don’t have to ‘do’ anything. They don’t have to sell in a gallery or sit well beside the ads in a magazine. I don’t have to make pictures that are easily categorised. They are not reportage, there is no subject, they are not art, there is no great technical craft or aesthetic beauty. They are just pictures about life. For these reasons, Picture Editors, Art Directors and Curators don’t know what to do with them, where to put them. I like that.


Nick Turpin produced the Street Photography film in-sight, he published the in-public Street Photography book ‘10’ Years of in-public and writes about Street Photography at sevensevennine. You can follow Nick on Twitter

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