Los Angeles and New York City based Street Photographer Damon Pablo has been taking photographs on the street for the past twenty five years. He was first introduced to the genre while studying at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. His work focuses on documenting the private moments experienced in public and the feelings these images evoke. He's been the recipient of PDN's Curator Award which honors outstanding 'undiscovered photographers' and his work has be shown at the Milk Gallery in NYC. He has been interviewed about his method and approach to street photography by the Huffington Post, PDN and the Thought Catalog; an online culture magazine. In 2019, his work was part of a group show at the Leica Gallery in Los Angeles. Damon shoots only black and white film using a Leica M7 rangefinder and one lens, a 35mm Summicron. With over 75,000 images and counting he is still printing in a traditional darkroom and can often be found out wandering the streets, camera in hand - pockets full of film.
My images try to show the quiet everyday moments of life that often go unnoticed. I'm most interested in capturing a mood or an emotion and try to encapsulate what I think a person is feeling at that time. Since I don't interact with my subjects or ever crop any of my images, I have to focus on composition and exposure as well to help tell the story. What I frame in camera is exactly what you see in my final print. Are they experiencing something poignant and human? Or are they just gettin away from it all? Since my photos are all candid, I don't spent too much time in any one place because the next moment, or image, is often gone before I even get a chance to shoot it. My image of a man reading his paper in Tomkins Square Park (Gallery 1) is an example of me trying to find the balance between mood, subject and composition. He wants to enjoy being in a public park, but he clearly doesn't want to be bothered by anyone. So I try to frame him in that way, keeping his face hidden by the papers. Thus balancing his need for privacy while still composing something interesting that tells the story. Having to find this balance is something that keeps me emotionally connected to the streets and always visually engaged.