Lost

I promised myself that I would not bang any big drums here with this blog. I have broken it. My aim was to just post what I see, and let anyone who is interested enough to look at my images to understand what I am doing and make their own decisions as to what they get from them. To feel what I feel and to think what they may about the end product.

I got an email this morning from Mary Brosnahan, President and CEO at Coalition for the Homeless. Not that I am saying that I am that important that she should email me directly. I am on the list so it was sent to any interested people who sign up for it.

It shocked me deeply. 20,000 children are now homeless on the streets of New York. Staggering statistics. I can understand the people who are addicted to substance by choice and now lost to society and the ones who are there by consequence, even the angry and the stupid. but children? It defies belief in what is laughingly called the free world. The land of milk and honey? Only for some perhaps.

I would never, obviously, publish pictures of homeless children.  There is only so much people can take.  Here are some unfortunate people who have fallen below social consideration.

“Don’t Look”

Subway

Just passing the time

In the Arms of Mary

A Few Steps Below

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40 thoughts on “Lost

  1. One picture is a thousand words.,Your photos speak for themselves , their message will come across regardless if you bang the drum or not. It’s sad that children have to pay such price when social systems fail and a nation looks the other way.
    Ciao, Francina

  2. Just brilliant… Your images are beautiful, thought-provoking, and ABSOLUTELY necessary. As a photojournalist I don’t think it does you any harm to add a few words or statistics to drill in the facts. There’s a similar photojournalist working in India portraying the same issues, and I appreciate it — I learn more every day. So — many thanks to you!

  3. Very revealing images and excellent social commentary. The first picture in particular is heartbreaking. Who knows what tragic circumstances put her where she is. In my parents (small) home town the authorities don’t even acknowledge that there are homeless people – they simply deny their existence!

  4. Honestly you are one of this people who is enough sensitive and generous to show the truth. I love your work and what do you try to tell us. I would like to see the other part of the truth, the ambition, the vice and the luxury of a city like NY. I know both sides are really close each other. Regards.

  5. The first photo: the girl with her dog gets me. I see occasionally see homeless people with dogs in my little rural county, and on the one hand, I’m struck how a person who is likely doing all she can to get by, still has heart and hope enough to have a pet. And then I think about my dogs, who mean so much to me, and I’m certain that if I ever found myself homeless, I’d have them by my side too. I can’t imagine discarding them, even if the rest of the world had discarded me.

    • I know that some homeless people think that they make more money on the streets by having a dog at their feet when they ask for money. On the other hand, I guess there are a great many who just cannot bear to be without their ‘companion’ no matter how difficult their situation. Thank you for a great comment.

    • Thank you Patti, I do, on occasion, see whole families traipsing through the streets of New York with their belongings in shopping carts. It is hard to watch. Harder to comprehend when thousands of television channels are pumping out adverts depicting happy family units enjoying the benefits of life above the line. Is society completely screwed or is it just me?

      • No, it’s not just you Anton. Unfortunately those “happy” highly aspirational, TV families bring in revenue while campaigns for abandoned pets tug at heartstrings and wallets. Homeless children? It’s all the government’s fault! Not forgetting that many people generously give money each week (tax deductible) at church services!

    • I doubt you would find images like these in any New York Tourist Guide. I think every city has its dark side. And I guess you have to be there for a while or at least long enough for your eyes to become accustomed to the shadows. Thanks for the comment.

  6. Hi Francina, I have been in the UK for the past week, I missed the storm. As a human that probably was a good thing, as a photographer it wasn’t. I got back to NYC yesterday on the first flight out into JFK. I have a lot of catching up to do.

    Thank you for your thoughts.

    Anton

    On Fri, Nov 2, 2012 at 6:44 AM, LUST & RUM

    • Hi Anton, thank you for dropping me a line that all is okay. I do understand your point as photographer when missing out on such a storm. To be safe is important too. Francina

  7. It was great to see you dropping by today – I’ve been wondering where you were all this time – good to know you were just ‘away! Looking forward to seeing what’s happening on the streets as the clean up continues 🙂

  8. Hi. I’ve been meaning to comment on this post for some time. A picture might be worth a thousand words but a few actual words can often add to the impact and yours certainly do, so keep it up please. I’m not going to comment on the situation which you portray so well so often, but just on a particular aspect of the first pic as no-one else seems to have done: the monochrome world of the sitting girl in the hectic multicoloured world of the passing NY masses speaks volumes – for me it’s a masterpiece. And why not picture the children? It might just prompt some fat cat to do something for them. Or is the US as ridiculous as the UK and you’re likely to be locked up? I’m still struggling to get back some technique but when I do I hope I can do something as valuable as your contributions.

    • Great comment and I thank you for your kind words. My reluctance to publish images of children is not through any legal or moral restrictions. Let’s be honest, the only moral dilemma lies firmly with the people who allow it to happen (the fat cats as you put it). If I thought a photograph including homeless children was relevant I would not hesitate to publish it. I choose to avoid any photograph that could be viewed as more gratuitous than purposeful. Anyway, enough of that. Thanks again.

  9. I stopped by today thinking that somehow I’d fallen off the notification emails. Glad to hear you weathered the storm. Looking forward to your next post. No rush.

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