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Documentary photography of San Francisco
--- with foreword by Chris Carlsson
San Francisco is a photographer’s paradise. Countless millions of photos are taken every year by tens of thousands of tourists, while professional photographers flock to capture the charismatic city’s familiar but always breathtaking views. With an eye for its natural beauty, a photographer can spend years trying to get the angle, the light, the juxtaposition that brings this city’s magic to a single frame.
But amidst this endless and prolific quest, most photographers overlook the prosaic scenes of daily life, and easily miss the remarkable textures that span class, ethnicity, neighborhood, architecture, signage, and so much more. Enter Jason Winshell’s eye-opening collection “Street,” wherein he has spent the first decade of the 21st century taking pictures in one of the most photographed places on earth. But he has avoided repeating the clichés and easy tropes that dominate San Francisco’s common portrayal. Instead Winshell has stopped on unlikely corners to see the actual people who live here.
The people in Winshell’s photos might have arrived in the last generation from Central America or Southeast Asia, refugees from the endless wars prosecuted by our industrialized military state. Others may have landed here quite recently in hot pursuit of the fast money that puts San Francisco in this era among the ultimate in shape-shifting urban spaces. As we gaze at his photos we can wonder who these people are, what the stories might be that led them to appear suddenly in his arresting images.
... read the whole foreword in the book
Chris Carlsson is a writer, a San Francisco historian, director of Shaping San Francisco, co-founder of Critical Mass and a resident of San Francisco for over 30 years.