Producing or Evoking Myths: Street Photography by Peter McCollough


Peter McCollough is a photographer based in Oakland, California. 

Peter: The inspiration for these images is manifold but films would be at the root of it all. While going to school for photojournalism my idealistic intentions of doing something positive for the world through documentary work faded away for various reasons. I was naive. I knew I could excel in the industry, but at personal and artistic costs that made me realize I wasn’t a good fit for it.

I’m a person driven by dream logic and imagination, so it’s more comfortable to try and bend reality towards fiction. When I began using documentary images in edits that felt like fictional stories, I started having fun again. Street photography became a natural segway because it’s so much easier to project onto what you’re photographing. It’s a really free, non-committal genre, less complicated. Editing is a big deal. I’m way more attached to edits than individual images. It’s rare that an individual image moves me the way that a string of well placed images do.

My friend pointed me to a quote that sums up how I’ve always felt about it all:

“The only photojournalistic images that remain interesting are the ones that produce or evoke myths.”
-Torbjørn Rødland

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See more of Peter’s work on his website.

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  • Ian Boys

    Lol. SEGUE, not SEGWAY. Segway is a scooter.

  • jedilost1

    Wow these photos are amazing, Peter is a talented photographer for sure

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  • Neil Ta

    Really awesome work!

  • Jane Smith
  • Joris van Gennip

    Very refreshing photographs and a well written and easy to read article. Love the photo of the two people kissing, reminds me of Anders Petersen a bit.