My name is James Stevens. I completed my degree in Photography in Cardiff.
As part of a long-running project, I have been taking a series of pictures of homeless people and beggars, in British and European cities. I have photographed people on the streets from Prague to Barcelona, but the most shocking shots of all were taken in London.
I was inspired by Don McCullin’s images of the London homeless. McCullin says in interviews how he was ‘shocked’ by people in London sleeping in doorways. I feel strongly that it is important to be shocked by such things, and not just to edit out uncomfortable truths. I believe that photography can influence social change.
My image of a homeless man, who lives in a doorway on Bristol’s Park Street, won the Silver Award in PermaJet’s “Printed Life in Black and White” Competition.
My current interest is in macro photography – I love the way pictures of very small objects look massive. With a macro lens, I can make a blossom look like a volcano or a seed look like a boulder. I first became fascinated with these images while photographing butterflies during a trip to Peru, where I worked on a rainforest ecology project.