In love with London, where he lives, Nicholas Goodden has become very popular in it’s photography scene over the last three years.
Some months ago he opened his first solo street photography exhibition called “The Great Londoners” (which has been sponsored by Hoxton Hotels, and Olympus).
Nico is not only a great photographer, he has also focuses strongly on social media and that got him on the top 100 of most socially influential photographers globally (Huffington Post and Forbes magazine) with a reach over 120,000.
He can be very proud of his extensive street photography portfolio, which he developed during the last seven years. He has also written street photography guides for photo-websites like Photoshelter and The Phoblographer, as well as for Olympus Magazine.
Early 2014, Nico founded the Street photography London collective with pourpose of becoming the home for London’s Street Photographers.
Currently he creates cinemagraphs, adding “movement” to Street Photography.
Let’s meet Nicholas Goodden !
Is London a must-go place for Street Photographers? What do you find on her streets ? Do you think that your pictures show the diversity and plurality inside a such cosmopolitan city ?.
I think it is one must-go place for sure. Although street photography can be practiced ANYWHERE, London seems to have many opportunities for a good shot (great looking streets, great looking people and styles…)
You are Olympus Ambassador and you got specialized on this Brand. What can you tell us about your gear ?
First, I don’t get paid by Olympus and I still pay for my cameras and lenses. This means I have a choice and only recommend what I believe in. Olympus works for me since I now have a large set of lenses for that format and all I have to do it upgrade camera once in a while. So at the moment I have an EM5 Mark II which I love. It’s small, beautiful, silent and does the job!
Does the Street bring up inside you a special feeling ¿ Which is your experience as Street Photographer ?, how do you feel like when shooting at streets ?
Street Photography is just a great excuse to go for a walk. I love walking and discovering London (even after 16 years here). The camera is now an extension of my body so everything happens naturally. It’s a part of me.
You are founder of Street Photography London, a very important Street photography collective. What is the origin of the collective ? Tell us a little about it.
Haha, not sure about “very important” but thanks! I just launched it for two reasons. One: A home for London’s best Street Photographers. Two: A place for people to read interviews and learn about great street photographers from around the world. Hopefully a place for inspiration.
You have been nominated by Street hunters as one of the 20th most influential street photographers of 2015. Do you think your special view is influencing other authors ? which make your view so special ?
First, like any “list”, it’s not the definitive list. Many people may not agree with it, I respect that, I am a part of it, I didn’t create it or vote for it. But it’s nice to hear that so many people voted for me and recognize the work I do which is to spread the word about street photography and street photographers without discrimination. After all I don’t get paid or make money from the collective, it actually costs me money to run it. So getting some acknowledgement is always nice.
You shoot on digital, looking at your work… do you prefer Black and White or colour ?
No preference at all. Black and white is the easy choice. It simplifies things. Colour I find is actually a lot more difficult and shows true skill in a photographer. If you can shoot well in colour that’s an achievement.
You are a creator, a multi-faced character. On your website we can find that you are not only devoted to Street Photography. You have also done some commercials for Peugeot UK, Weber Shandweck and others, but what captures more our attention are your Timelapse and Cinemagraphs’ projects with very impressive results. Can you tell us more about this ?
Thanks! Yes I don’t like to only try one genre and stop there. I love photography and hopefully will live to an old age. That means I have plenty of time to experiment. Life is not still, definitely not in London anyway. So Timelapse and Cinemagraphs allow me to include motion in my photography without crossing over to video. So I create short, perfect loops of 6 to 15 seconds which are in high demand by companies for social media.
What impression gives you Street photography in general?, do you think that street photography is keeping his original intention, telling stories or situations, or maybe it’s getting onto more minimalistic impressions in order to create a bigger visual impact ?
I have in the past year grown a little tired of seeing too much average/bad street photography. People need to up their standards and be more critical of their own work. I see too many photographers posting too often on social media. If you post once a day, chances are that you are not tough enough in selecting your shots. Another problem is that often what people call street photography is really lacking a lot. I mean, some shots give nothing to the viewer. Just a photo of someone in the street. No story, no beautiful lines, etc… Just some very average photo. I don’t want to sound like all I shoot is great, as it is not. I have lots of bad photos. But I make sure no one sees them! Be your worst critic.
You are a very connected person in the social media, you are present in Twitter, Google+, Facebook and other platforms, publishing and collaborating with much more photographers in the rest of the world. Which importance do you give to this social platforms ?
They are very important as long as you don’t forget that the main important thing for a photographer is to take photos. I get most of my paid photography jobs through Twitter. So since it works for me, I spend a lot of time on it.
The last thing Nico, are you into some Project now ? and whats about your collective ?. Tell us… how do you see street photography in 25 years ahead ?
At the moment in truth I focus 100% on timelapse and cinemagraphs. They have revived my passion for photography which recently was a little low. It happens to everyone I am sure.
The collective, it’s hard to say but we keep doing what we do, and hope people like it.
As for street photography, as long as people strive for quality, it’ll keep going just the way it has since photography was invented! It documents our lives and one day in 100 years people will look at our work and understand our time better.
Interview by Jose Luis Gea
Translation by Fabian Spura