All the photographs in Between Cracks were taken in Philadelphia from 1988 to 2004. The impetus for the project (apart from the thousands of pictures I'd amassed over the years) was my realization that few books have been made of Philadelphia "street" photography, despite the town's obvious gritty appeal. The faces of people here are particularly interesting: they often aren't pretty, but definitely not slick or generic, either. Maybe these faces express that Philadelphia "attytude" we hear so much about.
In any case, this place still has "place," unlike many newer American cities.
Some of the images are almost random shots where I pointed the camera in the general direction of the action without looking through the viewfinder; others are carefully composed and selected with multiple shots of the same subject; many others lie somewhere in between. Everything was shot on Kodak Tri-X.
From Between Cracks intro:
"Philadelphia was dying when I moved here in 1988. Cardboard-box villages under Broad Street. Crack vials everywhere. Astronomical murder rate. The city was bankrupt, morally and financially.
"Since then, Philadelphia has managed to more-or-less pull itself out of debt; there's been a massive influx of trendy restaurants, sidewalk cafes, theaters and boutiques in Center City; the value of once-unwanted real estate has skyrocketed as empty-nesters and speculators have taken over entire neighborhoods in a town they once scorned.
"That said, much of Philadelphia is still a relatively suspicious, blue-collar place where photography in the streets is virtually unheard-of beyond the range of a few Center City art schools. Even our "real" photographers often search elsewhere for material. This is not Manhattan or Paris where legions of Leicas are taken for granted..."
Also available at Molly's Books, 1010 S 9th St., Philadelphia, PA; 215-923-3367.