Surprisingly, I have been asked this question very few times.
When I was in college, the teacher who saved me from really disliking photography lent me The Americans by Robert Frank. I loved it and decided I wanted to make a book someday (haven’t done that yet). I picked Without A Place as the title of my future publication. The idea of Without A Place was first inspired by this photo:
This image was taken in Paris, as we floated on a boat down the Seine River. I loved this picture (now and then) and felt it was a good picture – but not because it was taken in Paris. I don’t believe there is anything that “says” Paris or France, no Eiffel Tower, no Arc de Triomphe. And so, it was like a lightbulb went on and I realized that a good piece of art should be relatable (just made up my own word?) to a large variety of people. Some people have never been to Paris or have no desire to go, but lots of people have fed the birds. A picture should not be considered “good” simply because it is of Paris or England or Hawaii or some other far off place. So THAT is what “without a place” is – a good picture can be taken any place, any where.
Can you guess where the rest of these images were taken? Don’t know if it’s a hint or not, but all of these were taken on film, and then scanned in. This one was published in a college literary magazine!