I’m asked all the time if my photographic work is motivated by someone being close to me being disabled. It’s not, and that I hope enables me to take the viewpoint of the outsider. My agenda if I have one is communicate what I see in an unbiased way.
I got to know Caroline through some work I did for the local council. We did a couple of photo shoots together. I’d only ever seen Caroline in a wheelchair but when I used the term ‘wheelchair bound’ she quickly corrected me telling me about her dance performances. These photographs were taken in a closed session with her regular dance partner.
Very definitely one of those days when I learnt a great deal. I arrived that date believing I was non-judgmental and left feeling I had inched closer to that goal. I’d allowed stigma to influence my thinking. Briefly disappointed with myself for being ‘narrow minded’ but then remembering that’s why I do this work. Now we all know…