Don Greenfield Photographer

About Don Greenfield

Moments unguarded. Faces, scenes, a place in time, a split second captured, in a photographer's lens, frozen. Faces: some solemn, some laughing, some hiding, but all vulnerable.

My name is Don Greenfield. I am a photographer who shoots constantly but with a consummate eye, always on the lookout for characters in the streets, subways, and the haunts, nooks and places that you'd never expect to find the most exquisite subjects in the greatest metropolis of the world. Why do I photograph? When I am roaming around New York City on subways, in streets, bars, or bookstores, I see people and their moments in time. I see a foot lifted off of a curve, an arm swinging, a neck craned, the way a person stands or leans. There are a myriad of emotions that I capture through my lens and all are fascinating to me. I see it all. I stroll the city streets, and no one notices me. I am underground. Above ground. I look through my lens and demand: How are you? Do you laugh? Play? Curse? Mourn? Are you quiet, or explosive? With strangers surrounding you, you are exposed. Yet you dance on city streets. You ride the subway, lost in a reverie where no one can touch you. You stroll on a boardwalk like a king. You gaze out of your beautifully kept tenement window like a queen. When the photographer is unseen, he is a translator of dreams, but also of the gritty reality of the streets, and the heart. This is my goal: to document the unexpected and the subject who is unguarded.

I bought my first camera in an army PX in Japan in 1966, and since then, it has been my constant companion, my muse, my canvas, and my life. My passion for photography finally led me to construct a personal darkroom where I worked and honed my printing skills, and where I still work, except that now that I work in the digital format as well.

I don't romanticize the past such as Bresson, Walker Evans, Winogrand, etc. but I can certainly learn from them.

I think about today as tomorrow's yesterday.

My favorite quote form Bill Keane, an american artist is "Yesterday's the past, tomorrow's the future, but today is a gift. That's why it's called the present."