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Yves Vernin

Shooting the street, right next to my door, it’s perhaps seeing what I am the only one to see – that the mundane can in fact be extraordinary. I cannot cheat; I have to do with what’s there outside. The most beautiful light is the one given to us, and I have learned to recognize its beauty. To me, a good image starts with the right composition, but needs a particular light as well to really captivate me.
As a photographer, I am particularly attracted by wide angles. I have grown to believe that bad images stem from being too far from the subject…By choosing wide angles, I am the one creating my image, whereas a tele objective would only provide me with detailed scenes that I wouldn't control.
Then I need to find that decisive moment, which will bring a human touch to the geometry and the light. Coming closer to a stranger, capturing his expression  right when his face lightens up, and bringing him to the center of the stage, that’s when photography becomes a sort of drug to me.

Today, I feel that everyone is equipped to produce good street photography: one just needs a mobile phone. But it remains to be seen whether or not it is legitimate to capture a moment in the life of a stranger. This is my belief that to take legitimate street images, these images need to have a universal appeal. Making people look beautiful is not my goal; my images are only testimonies of their humanity. Street photography shouldn't be a theft, but the acceptation of a gift.

Simple images rarely attract my attention, I like photographs that are able to organize the chaos – photos where my eyes need to analyze the various components and planes to understand the whole. Alex Webb, Constantine Manos, Raghubir Singh have had an important impact on my work, for their ability to make sense out of the chaos, in a complex, but beautiful manner.

I'm doctor and ethnologist and I live in Marseille, France.

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