Video: Jack Simon On Great Street Photography And The Imagined Story

Jack Simon - Street Photography And The Imagined Story

The guys over at Seeker Stories released a short video featuring Jack Simon on great street photography and the importance of story telling. He talks about his search for surreal, dreamlike images that ask questions rather than give answers. Hit the jump to watch the video!

Jack Simon On Great Street Photography

I got to spend an hour talking to Jack for his StreetShootr interview and we discussed a lot of these ideas. He truly enjoys wandering the streets and finding photos along the way. This video is a great intro to Jack’s work and how he sees the world and it’s definitely worth a couple minutes of your time!

Hi, my name is Jack Simon. I’ve been living in the San Francisco area since 1969 when I moved from the East Coast after medical school.

I am attracted to moments that are humorous and strange or surreal. And ideally I like to find scenes that capture the essence of an imagined story.

My search is to find some semblance of that dreamlike quality on the streets. I don’t plan or pose my photographs. Rather I wander the streets hoping to come across those rare scenes. And while searching, I’m enjoying the streets and wanderings.

Here, the setting looked bizarre. And I thought, “Wow, this is so strange that someone is painting a passed out man.” Then when I realized whom he was painting, it still seemed bizarre to me. That all this was going on around the man on the ground.

I don’t see myself documenting life on the street. Or social issues. I am never searching for anything specific. Part of the excitement is having no idea what I might find.

StreetShootr’s Take

This is our second story about Jack Simon in the past couple weeks and frankly, I just can’t get enough of him. His subjects exist in the world of the frame rather than simply being placeholders in a composition. His work reads like a perfect blend of Joel Meyerowitz’ poetic moments with the humor and wry wit of Jeff Mermelstein. What’s not to love?

This video includes quite a bit of footage of Jack Simon shooting on the streets of San Francisco. Here’s the full video from Eric Kim:

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