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    Entries in Shoot (17)

    Church Property

    Last week the unlikeness project took me to Christ Church, Spitafields, East London. Well at least just in front of it. I set up my usual bycicle & trailor to the left of the entrance, while to the right stood a tall organic coffee stall outfit. Not a bad place to run an art project, or so I thought.

    It took about 15 minutes, right in the middle of my first two participants, until a angry church representative appeared. She said I was "illegal" and that the pavement in front of the church was church property. When I asked how I could possibly be "illegal", she stormed back in and I carried on with my work. Another two portaits later a second church representative appeared, this time with plenty of patience and politely enquired how long I would be with my current sitter. "Five-ten minutes" I replied

    Once Mahira had her picture we talked again. I started the conversation:

     

    Hello Sir, how are you today? Would you like your picture given?

    I'm fine, what are you doing here?

    I'm taking pictures of people and if they like them they keep them. If they don't, I keep them.

    Hm. Would it be possible to move on?

    Why, am I in your way?

    You haven't got permission to be here. I would like to ask you to move on please.

    There's plenty of space here. Could you give me a permission?

    I can't give you permission.

    Do you know anyone who can give me permission?

    No I don't. Well maybe you can call the church helpline on the notice board here.

    And they can give me permission?

    I don't know if they can give anyone permission. I would like to ask you to move on please.

    ( I walk to the left and say:) How about here? Is here good?

    Ummm. Not there. Maybe over there. (He points to a spot 5 yards further towards the street, still on the same pavement)

    OK.

     

    As this spectacle unfolds Anne is taking pictures (all images in this post are ©Anne Byrne). We pick up the project, walk 5 yards and continue. In the move my pictures blow off and the church representative rescues them.

     

    All the while the organic coffee shop pulls shots as usual. They probably paid for a permit. On Church Property. Apparently.

    Bank Holiday Saturday

    Sunshine! What a glorious day! After days of rainy misery today started with a bright blue sky. Everyone's spirit was noticeably lifted. For three and a half hours I met new wonderful people, chatted, learned and photographed.

    John, Hassan, Alistair and all the Broadway Market Team are putting so much positive energy into this market, - it's an absolute pleasure to set up my mobile street portrait studio there every week.

    This was the largest shoot yet! I ran out of printer paper by the end of it. Twentyseven portraits in total. Two thirds liked, one third unliked their portraits. Over three and a half hours I had the pleasure to meet Alice, Giorgia, Fay, Nina, Susanna, Bennie, Lena, Sista, Claire, Julia, James, Claudia, Stanley, Caroline, Jesse, Miroslaw, Niove, Layal, Susanne, Amanda, Anastasia and the families of Sevim and Piyar. As always, a big Thank You for your patience, openess and impressions.

    Drizzle Day 

    Saturday was a drizzly-overcast dreary London day. Nevertheless have I met another wonderful group of London Fields and Broadway Market chracters. At times it felt like a Wimbledon final: rain covers on/off on/off.

    Advertising Managers and graphic designers, mums, a Psychotherapist, a Bookseler, a Musician, a Business Development Manager and an entire Argentine family crossed my lens.

    In the three hours of talking and shooting I took eighteen "liked" and (only) two "unliked" portraits. Either the weather is making people less choosy or more content with their own likeness. Or maybe I'm getting better at this.

    For anyone interested in a discussion amongst the participants and finding out about future shoots, we now have a facebook group:

    Unlikeness Portraits (facebook group)

    I'm somewhat a dinosaur when it comes to facebook, so I have no idea really what's going to happen to this group, but you're welcome to join and make it happen :)

    As always, a massive shout to all the contributors this week: Francesca, Stephen, Leila, Angelica, Lara+Eve+Francisca, Nigel, Cara, Ana, Diego+Silvia+Miranda+Serena+Ciro, Kitty+Daisy, Omer (again!), Lars, Abdullah, Lia and Lily! You all made my day. Drizzle or not.

    Day Four

    Saturday was my fourth day in this project. As I'm working during the week, I only have the weekends to play with, hence Saturday is my favorite day for UNLIKENESS.

    For the third week running, I placed myself at the top end of Broadway Market on Westgate Street. Although it rained through the night, the morning stayed dry enough for masses of people to come out. I guess the music festival in London Fields also pulled people out of their Saturday Sofas.

    When I arrived, I was happy to find Dan & Luke set up next to me with their amazing Drums, Double-Bass & Double-Voice set-up right beside "my spot". They're  great guys and full of good spirit.

    Over the next three hours I had more wonderful people join project UNLIKENESS. Pavel kicked it off followed by Emma & Frida, Alex, Omer, Sam, Nancy, Hakima, Jane (x2), Chrystal, Larissa, Anna, Craig, Samira, Helge, Morwenna, Katharine and finally Mia. I had a bike repair specialists, a research fellow, stall owners, an engineer and most amazingly two doctors working in A&E who came separately, but once worked together. I'm quickly become a prime transmitter in the sixth degrees of separation theory!

    Obviously a massive thank you again to everyone who took part, no mater if you liked or unliked your portrait. Without your participation none of this would have happened.

    The day came to a close when the rain kicked back in and I had to hurry to rescue my printer & paper. Have a great week and leave a comment by clicking the link below :)

    Last Saturday in July

    The Sun came out eventually. And so came the curious and wonderful people I met. Artists, Craftswomen, Mathematician, employed and not.

    Many liked themselves in the image. At times it all became quite hectic trying to interleave one person's picture taking with another person's print and likeness-query. I felt stretched and looking back on it now, decided to not worry about trying to please everyone with speed and service. I think this shows in some of the images.

    By the time I packed up I made 16 portraits with eleven people liking themselves in them and five not. A big thank you to all you amazing folk and your wonderful stories: Harriet, Rishi, Ken, Chris, Rosie, Toral, Amit, Kristen, Ruth, Alice, Miles, Omer, Giannina, Dominic, Jamie and Hubert!

    I felt so full and buzzing from all the discussions we had. Hope you enjoyed it equally.