Sebastian Palmer, b.1979, currently divides his time between London, the UK and São Paulo, Brazil. Having discovered photography whilst studying Graphic Design at Central St. Martins in London, Palmer went on to specialize in commercial and portrait photography. He has received two 1st place awards at the IPA Lucies and a 1st place award at the SonyWPA, and continues to be published in numerous international publications including The Sunday Times, GQ and WIRED.
In this series I have been living in an illegally occupied building in downtown São Paulo, Brazil with some of the 70,000 people that migrate to the city every year in search of a better life.
Often arriving from the countryside with little or no money, no skills and high rates of illiteracy their journey is a tough one. They can not afford to pay for rent and the majority can not find employment. Those that do manage to find a job are underpaid and often work 7 days a week to make ends meet. Yet despite these conditions and the hardships that they face, everyone that I encountered found the strength to carry on through hope. It is this theme that I wanted to explore.
I have used diptychs as a means to expand the narrative. Always using items found close to or belonging to the subject. These detail shots are clues so often overlooked and dismissed but that I see as fragments of information which help to complete the puzzle. All images are shot in camera. I have made use of long shutter, deliberate camera movement and the placing of items in front of the lens in order to allow me to create an aesthetic quality and my interpretation of the subjects’ utopia.
To view more of Sebastian Palmer’s work, please visit his website.