I was lucky enough to visit Syria before the civil war. My memories of Syria are some of the happiest of my life, and I recall some of the most noble and
friendly people I have ever met. I have traveled a great deal, yet never before have I felt so genuinely welcome in another country. As I walked the streets, I was constantly asked where I was from. “England” I replied. “You are Welcome!” people would say. It’s a phrase that still rings in my ears, meant with such sincerity and sentiment, the one phrase that captures my whole experience of this wonderful country.
The irony of this body of work for me is that I originally traveled to Syria in order to shoot stock images; at this point in my career, this is something that I was giving a try and I had been told by friends that Syria was an up and coming destination. These images were taken as personal observations, notes to myself. Yet as time has passed and history has unraveled, these images have taken on another meaning.
As I follow the war on the news, I often find myself thinking about the people I met. I wonder what has become of them, where they are now. I wonder if they have been fighting or fleeing. I wonder if they are still alive.