In “Anonymous Lives”, I photograph in various subways around the United States. Subways are a metaphor for our modern day, transient society and the aloneness and anonymity that comes with that existence. In these photographs, I capture the featureless mass of subterranean dwellers where the individual is all but obscured. Rather than an opportunity for two strangers to acknowledge each other, random eye contact is shunned while underground. There is a sense of urgency, even dread as a result of being alone while surrounded by so many others. In subways, and as members of a larger society, we are ill-defined, we are featureless, we are apart. In essence, we are no one. To create the dreamy out-of-focus (but not quite blurry) effect I was looking for, I use a tilt-shift lens which allows me to render certain parts of the image our of focus while still keeping other elements recognizable. I work to deconstruct the particulars of the scene in order to move the viewer to see the image in its most elemental form. I want the viewer to see the essence of the image immediately so I work on eliminating details that would otherwise distract and slow this process. This series is still evolving and growing. Each time I venture underground to travel from one point to another, I am again compelled to capture the anonymous lives that I see.
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