Carol and Charlie and Jack

One Street: Market Square, Shipley #100

I celebrate a little anniversary tonight. This is my 100th "One Street" blip, the 100th blip I've posted of the life and people of Market Square in Shipley, all taken on lunchtime breaks from work. This project has been a revelation and I owe a huge debt of gratitude to the wonderful Kendall for kicking this whole thing off. For those relatively new to blip, please take a look at the original forum post here.

I was stagnating a bit with my photography at the time and running out of ideas for blips on those grey days centred on the office, travelling to and from work in the gloom. I had no confidence around taking my camera on the street and couldn't possibly imagine stopping someone and asking for a portrait. If you think you'd have trouble with that then take heart from me. Kendall challenged me to get out of my comfort zone of hills and trees - which I duly did, baby steps at first but then growing bolder all the time, until I reach this point now where I feel quite at ease walking around with my camera and taking both candid shots and portraits.

I will hold my hand up and admit that I was a bit snobbish about Market Square when I first started working in Shipley. But that's very much changed. It's kind of got lost in time and that's now a big part of its shabby charm for me. The people to be found here are as real as they come. Almost everyone has time to talk and is happy to do so. They all seem to have a story to tell. I've made some good friends on the square as a result. Indeed, I know so many people now that it's almost a problem, because by the time I've said hello to a few and caught up on news, a big chunk of my time for photography has gone! But that engagement is really important. With street photography I think it's really important that it's not all take. I like to think I give a lot back to these people by just listening to their stories and acknowledging them.

I've thanked Kendall. I must also thank you too. More than anything else it has been the feedback and support of you lot that has encouraged me to keep going with this project and believe that it's something worthwhile. Cheers everyone.

These dogs were so cute that I couldn't resist chatting up their owner and getting a picture. Apparently, they are Bichon Frisés! That's a new one on me. I managed to establish eye contact with one of them but his brother was less obliging!

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