Scot, let's start with the evening you hung your photographs @ Local. I was anticipating perhaps an hour or so to place all of the images and then 4 hours in, you were almost done. Clearly, there's a highly complex process driving your craft. So two initial questions:
How do you approach each project so there's a comprehensive contextual experience?
I study the exhibit space and how people move through it, the lighting (both natural and artificial), and the sound (ambient and music). I envision the experience of entering and first seeing the pictures, and then moving in for a closer look. I then try to create an exhibit that has a strong emotional and visual presence and also enhances the space.
How did you approach the project for Local including the masterful grid display system?
The large patina metal panels and high ceiling allowed me to create a show that is relatively dense with images and includes large scale (20" x 30") pictures mounted high that can be easily seen because of their size. By carefully and precisely arranging the photos, a grid was created which seems appropriate for pictures taken on the grid of streets in New York City.
You have a super intimate relationship with NYC which is evident from the manner in which you capture a variety of moments. NYC is arguably the capital of the world so no surprise in selecting this market but what specific elements draw you in?
I always feel fully alive when I'm in New York City and I look for that energy in the people and situations around me.
Of the current collection of images @ Local, which one brings you back for re-interpretation?
I can't say there's one that I keep coming back to. They are all equally interesting to me.
At what age did you begin your craft and what was the initial driver for you to consider photography as a path?
I've loved photography all of my working life, most of which has been spent as an architect. There was no one moment when I became a street photographer. It happened gradually, then gathered steam. Now street photography defines and nurtures me, and gives me a reason to get out of bed in the morning.
Photography is an evolution, personal development as well as technology and equipment. Do you like where we are today and where photography is going or do you prefer a past time with arguably simpler option?
My learning curve as a photographer was greatly accelerated by the transformation from film to digital, and the development of image processing software such as photoshop and light-room. It simply became much easier - and less expensive - to learn how to produce decent work. Technology doesn't produce fine art however. In order to do that, you're on your own.
What's next on you journey? Is there a project that you are working on or working towards?
My journey is street photography. I want to get better, to keep evolving as an artist and a person.
What's your favorite coffee or tea beverage?
Black coffee, room for half and half, sweetened slightly by stevia.
More of Scot’s work here: https://www.scotsurbeck.com/index