My recent trip to India was amazing. As you’ve seen in the images that I posted last week, they help take the blog in a new direction.
That being said, I think some of the images have confused a portion of the audience as to why I feel they fit into the context of this blog.
If there was any confusion before, let me make it clear now that I don’t categorize The Sartorialist as just a fashion or street style blog. For me, it’s always been a personal, visual diary of my life and — as I’ve always stated — I feel that these images are portraits of people whose clothing can help create a story about who they might be (for most of these people I’ll never know the truth). Like the variety of real life, some of these images will be happy or sad, confusing or enlightening, compelling or repelling. Just like in music, no musical artist would sing all happy love songs, so why would I shoot only happy street style images? We’re all adults here and I don’t think I have to hold you by the hand and explain how each shot should make you feel. Yes, this is quite a bit different from the other street style blogs I’m often grouped with, but that’s what very happily sets me apart from the crowd. These types of images are also no longer new to the blog; I’ve already shot in countries like South Africa, Morocco, Bali, Peru, China, the UAE, now India, and will be shooting early next year Nepal and Bhutan. As I prepare my third book I hope to achieve a combination of 50% to 60% fashion images and 50% to 40% cultural images. It might be hard to see the forest through the trees, but after a few more years of expanding my travels, I will have a catalog of images that will truly capture a view of the world and its people during this period in time
The image of this young girl in the flower market is not a fashion photograph.
It’s not about how cute her dress is or is not. And, unfortunately, this is not your typical happy image of a carefree child. None of us know the exact truth of this young girl’s situation, but, what I see in an image like this, is the spirit of a young girl with dreams like any young girl would posses, anywhere around the world. I see her youthful spirit expressed in the joyful colors of her dress and bracelets, but I also see the contrast of having to balance the reality of her daily life. The burden is represented by the bundle of flowers she carries. The way her face is cast down, you literally feel the weight of that burden on her back. I think it’s a beautifully heartbreaking photograph for anyone, like me, who is a parent. At the same time, however, we absolutely don’t know the truth of the image. For all we know she could be helping her family maintain a prosperous flower stall, much like how my father helped on the farm in North Dakota while he was growing up in the 1930′s. If this image outrages you and makes you want to do something about abolishing child labor, great! Let’s not forget Steve McCurry’s Afghan Girl photograph is also beautifully heartbreaking, and made a huge difference in the plight of Afghan refugees during the Afghan/Soviet conflict of 1984.
SOURCE: The Sartorialist – Read entire story here.