More Than Just A Snapshot: Albion Harrison-Naish


Due to the nature of social networking, the single image is increasingly becoming the norm for photo websites and users’ showcases, rather than a full series of work or ‘project’.

The ability to catch a moment on your mobile phone and instantly upload to a photo-sharing site demonstrates the way mobile photography can be a very powerful tool in areas such as photojournalism. However, this ‘instantaneous’ culture can lead to the need to upload photos on a constant, and sometimes daily, basis meaning the storytelling of a narrative sequence of images is lost.

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While there are many photography showcases built around a single image, this feature aims to showcase a story built around the photographer and their subject.

Albion Harrison-Naish – Bondi in Winter

Still Cool by Albion Harrison-Naish

I’ve lived in Bondi since I was six years old, so over 30 years now. It’s home. In the almost two years I’ve been photographing, I had come to realise earlier this year that except for a few small examples I had largely avoided pursuing street photography in Bondi, and had shied away from sharing online those photos that I had taken. This led me to start taking a few more of them, but I was still finding it hard to post them. It was slightly troubling in that way that sits in the back of your head bubbling away. I wondered why I might be feeling hesitant in this manner, especially as almost all my photos are taken in the areas I can pass through during my normal day to day activities.

I came to realise that in part I was worried that the shots I took would not interest others as much as they did me, Bondi being somewhere I know so intimately and have a great affection for. But also, I wanted the Bondi that was my home, for all these years, to be what I was focusing on, not the tourist spot of beachgoers and bright young things out for a good time in the water and on the sand. The ever present hedonism, however fun to capture on occasion, was not what interested me. As winter was coming I decided to take shots on my local walks with an eye to putting together a series in late winter that showed the friendly, suburban Bondi that I knew. The Bondi that was beautiful despite the ugliness of much of its built environment. To show the village atmosphere that exists here.

I wanted to be able to be a part of the scenery and not a point of focus in my own right, to capture images casually as I wandered around whilst other people wandered about their business. To this end I found using my mobile to be perfect, due mostly to its discretion and ability to capture the casual intimacy of daily life I wanted to communicate. Although a camera is largely ignored if you are near the beach front, I’ve found that further back from there, a camera tends to garner attention even if not raised or in use.

I hope I have to some degree shared a part and aspect of my home that isn’t usually seen in the shots of beach vistas, local ‘characters’ and beautiful young things hanging about in not much.

Connect with Albion Harrison-Naish

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  • Thank you Andy and Mark for this, it is a series that means a lot to me and I appreciate the opportunity to share it here. Cheers guys!

    • Mark T Simmons

      Thanks for allowing me to feature this excellent series of images, to see an area as only a local can. A wonderful set, mate and some of your finest work.

  • You present a vision of where you live that allows us to see why it is home for you. The images may not be in colour, but still there is a vividness which allows us to imagine the scene in colour.

    One of my finds on FLickr this year has been to find your stream. Thanks for sharing – thanks for inspiring.

    • Mate, big thanks, those are some very kind and lovely words you’ve popped down there. I really appreciate it and have hugely enjoyed coming across your work too mate. Always nice to find some mutual inspiration! 😉

  • I agree with you 110 % . Nice pictures Albion.

    • Thanks heaps Pedro, much appreciated mate.

  • Liz Traynor

    I love the way you see your world Albion. Your generosity of spirit shines through in every image. A class act indeed!! Fantastic article and inspiring photography. Big congratulations my friend. 🙂

    • Gee, thanks heaps love. Your generosity of spirit shines through in anything I’ve ever seen you post or write. A pleasure to share parts of this journey with you. Cheers! ;-P

  • Wow! Went through all the links here and then your blog on Tumblr. Incredible shots! And, love how you choose B&W as your presentation format. All fantastic shots.

    Can I ask, do you Hipstamatic’s B&W rolls for most all of your shots? What rolls and lens do you prefer? Or, is there another app that you use for capture and then do the B&W conversion in another? If there is, what is it? I’m doing a review of the better photo apps out there and how people can get into photography now that most everyone has a high-quality camera on them at all times — and, how they can go from capture to post to completion totally in-phone! Amazing what can be done now and amazingly creative people like you show what can be done.

    All the best, Brother!

    • G’day Dave, Thanks so much for those really lovely words, I appreciate it mate. So sorry to only come across this now and I realise you are unlikely to see this, but here goes…

      In a nutshell, I almost never do any editing at all. One of the things I like about the hipsta is that you don’t need to really. But when I do edit, it is mostly on the phone. But all those sorts of deatils are in the tags on each shot on flickr. Anyhoo, thanks again mate.