If you are considering a piece from Gallery by ASP, we feel the following is important to read and understand prior to adding to your collection.
What is Street Photography?
The core purpose of Street Photography is to document life as it happens. It is otherwise referred to as Documentary or Candid Photography, with some artists identifying their sub-styles as Social Realism or some amalgamation of those terms, and others. Street Photography inherently is created “as is” – there is no staging, no intentional placing of people or props – it is simply documenting things as they are, as they happen, in real time. The simplicity of Street Photography is a beautiful thing.
Given that Street Photography is candid by nature and does not allow for staging or props – getting “The Shot” for artists takes time, patience, and most importantly - genuine skill and talent.
Why is Street Photography important?
We live in a world where misinformation is becoming the norm. From social platforms, to news networks to conversations and discussions with family and friends – everywhere we go, there has been an undeniable and consistent uptick in fallacious information, which in turn contributes to overall distrust and divisiveness globally.
Street Photography is undeniable, and factual. It etches moments in time that can not be interpreted in any other way except for how it has been documented. It removes opinion yet encourages debate - not over facts – but the drivers of the actual reason for why something is the way that it is.
How is it created?
Imagine this – you’re sitting on a street corner for 3 hours with a camera doing what you love most in the world; creating. You’ve taken 500 photos in this time. Golden hour finally hits, the lighting is perfect. An interesting subject crosses your camera’s field of vision – and click. You’ve got your shot. You do the same thing the next day, and the next, and the next. Through perseverance and dedication to your craft, you build a portfolio of stunning images, and have documented true, unaltered moments in time.
Eventually, over years and years of honing your skill, and building a dedicated following of followers and fans that admire your work – you finally catch the attention of a massive global publication and they hire you on contract. It’s your big break in the industry – they agree to pay you $200 USD per image of yours they publish, but they retain exclusive rights on that image. It isn’t yours anymore. By this time, you’re one of the most sought after and respected Street Photographers in the world, having dedicated your life to this art form – only to make literal cents per hour of work, significantly below minimum wage by nearly any global standard. Of course, you get exposure, that is the tradeoff that this large publication pitches to you – however exposure doesn’t pay for rent or put food on the table.
What does this mean?
It means that the overwhelming majority of these generational Street Photography talents make a living doing something else. These artists work full time jobs, do contract work here and there – you name it there is a Street Photographer that likely does it – just to make ends meet in order to fund their next project, their next day out documenting life as it happens. Street Photographers have an income limitation based on the minimal income availability within the industry. It is rare to make enough to do this full time. This income limitation creates a time limitation for artists, which at a macro level becomes a Street Photography limitation – and a meaningful one.
Documentation of life’s events stops, and those moments that aren’t documented are gone forever. In many cases, history is lost.
What is Gallery by ASP doing about it?
Gallery by ASP’s fundamental mission is to help Street Photographers monetize their art by providing astute photography collectors with beautiful, hand-crafted, museum-quality Fine Art Prints. Each piece from our gallery directly pays the Street Photographer.
By providing a missing piece of the Street Photographer’s monetization puzzle, we assist and promote artist’s incentive to go out and document life so that history is not lost.
Why do we feature non-Street Photography art?
Street and Documentary Photography’s primary purpose is for documenting moments in time. This means that more often than not, Street Photography images are not necessarily “desirable” for most people’s walls, homes or decoration. This is exactly why so many legendary Street Photographers struggle to make ends meet, as their primary purpose is not creating something that is commercially pleasing with the intent of selling prints – they are making documentary based art that exists for historical and informational purposes. This contributes to the income limitations for Street Photographers, and therefore creates a limitation on Street Photography as a whole.
Therefore, our solution to bridge the gap to do our part in advancing Street Photography is simple. We meticulously curate and hand select the best Street Photographers from every corner of the world. We work hand-in-hand with them to craft collections of their work that are desirable for hanging on walls. We then market, sell, manufacture, certify, and deliver that work using the highest quality materials and pay them on every single sale of their work. We play a small role in assisting Street Photographers in getting the income, and in turn the time, that they need to document life’s delicate and passing moments.
We are all About Street Photography.
- Gallery by ASP