Brighton is a seaside resort area and a part of the larger city of Brighton and Hove. Situated on the southern coast of England, it is part of West Sussex, the county we call home.
Like all UK resorts, it has fallen into a little disrepair with the attraction of low-cost flights to the sunny climes of southern Europe. This city’s mixture of wealth and poverty has everything an urban photographer needs to tell a well-rounded story of urban space. Packed with small boutique fashion shops, artist’s studios, and urine fragranced alleys daubed with street art. Brighton is a place of nostalgia. A place with a soul.
Being on the coast, you’ll notice the rusty metal and mouldy weather-beaten walls in amongst the bright colours and the sound of laughter and music. All great for abstract photography. Art is a major life force of the place and fills the everyday amongst those who live in the city or those drawn to a promise of a great time away from the watching eyes at home.
Narrow lanes of old-world stores with friendly vendors are a stone’s throw away from the bland high street chain stores. Antique stores and charity shops are commonplace and attract people from afar who come to get lost in the crowds as they look for a trinket or speciality seaside beverage.
Keep walking south towards the sea, and you’ll be stopped by rusty iron and bleached wood railings overlooking the stone beaches below your feet. Let’s be honest here. It’s that smell of the sea we all need to know we are on holiday.
Making your way down the old boat ramps or concrete steps to the ice-cream and beer vendors along the seafront, the sense of vacation hits you. It’s like a different world to the land above that is dominated by parking issues and pressed flesh in small shops. Basketball courts, volleyball pits, paddleboards and small yachts are there to use if you want to build up a sweat or fall into the ice-cold water.
For the photographer, it is the abundance of colour that I love about Brighton. If you follow my urban work, you’ll know that’s what my thing is. All things colour. In Brighton, when it is wall to wall blue sky with white seafront hotels and painted shop fronts, it is a magical place to photograph colour.
Brighton’s people are also an eclectic and colourful mix. Ever so patient of the throng of inlanders who have invaded their peace to eat hard candy while sitting in a spinning teacup or screeching around on a rent-a-bike to live that allure of a seaside life so foreign in the green hills of the interior.
Colour, diversity and frivolity always fill the air making it a fulfilling place to raise your camera and tell a story.
I lead 1-2-1 Urban photography workshops, and Brighton has just been added to my list of photography workshops. Contact me if you see any of the walks you want to chat about