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Work / Photography

Photographer Michelle Groskopf’s ongoing project is a vibrant portrait of Los Angeles

LA-based street photographer Michelle Groskopf has been adding images to her ongoing project, Daily Street for four years, documenting and interpreting the things she sees every day. “My hope is that I have the opportunity to shoot consistently for as long into my life as I can,” says Michelle. “Shooting in this unstructured way allows me to be present in my life and understand my likes and dislikes. To slow things down and pay attention. For those reasons, it’s an invaluable practice for me.”

Shooting the streets of Los Angeles where she lives, Michelle lets instinct be her guide when she’s out with her camera. “I definitely have my haunts and places of interest; the mall, the beach, my Hollywood neighbourhood. There is a certain aesthetic element present in this city that thrills me and moves me,” she explains. “All kinds of terrain matched with all kinds of people.”

Shot in Michelle’s vivid style, which focuses on colour and detail, she soaks up her surroundings to create well-timed and often humorous photographs. “Certain faces call to me or details pull at my insides. It’s really emotional and not at all intellectual… Daily Street has become a map of my life both internally, emotionally,” she says. Taking photographs on the street means the city environment becomes her studio, allowing her to create intimacy with strangers by pulling together different elements for a shot. “With my street work I tend to avoid context. I think context can be very old fashioned and suffocating in street photography. It’s so defining,” Michelle explains. “I prefer to change the rules and have folks reinterpret moments when they look at my work.”

The Tumblr site is a mix of portraits, close crops, landscape shots and still lifes and this variety of images creates a vibrant depiction of LA in Michelle’s eyes. “Most of my work is shoot first, explain after but it’s not mandatory for me,” she says. “I have had a great many conversation with people that led to some wonderful portraits. I’ve also gotten some very close portraits or details without the person ever being the wiser. What counts for me is the end result. The framing and the intention.” 

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Michelle Groskopf: Daily Street

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Michelle Groskopf: Daily Street