In our consumer society, branded commerce and large company structures dominate. Nonetheless, in London, where I live, small independent businesses still exist, continuing to operate in a way that is in stark contrast to corporate culture. Perhaps a city like London, with its large and diverse population, offers an environment particularly well suited to the survival of such places, where space and service are personal and wares and tools have a tangible connection with individual histories.
In 2007, I started a photographic project about people who run such businesses. It was to be an addition to my portfolio, an excursion into portraiture that I had planned to complete in a few months. Instead, I continued to photograph shops and workshops, shopkeepers, and craftsmen and -women for the following six years.
I was curious about people, who, despite unglamorous routines, take pride in their work and have a sense of themselves closely linked to their occupation.