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So, it was the 22nd of February. I just took some photos with my friends from the “namby pamby boys”. A rather unorthodox shoot for an unorthodox band. At about midnight (I was still hanging out at my friend Fabian’s place) Chris (Weeks) sent me a text, that he was looking forward to pick me up at the airport. I was a bit confused because I was sure I’d fly on the 24th, so I checked the flight details again and realized I would fly in a couple of hours already..

So everything I had planned to do (like carrying the leftover 150 liters of used chemicals from my father’s truck into the basement – that is at the other side of the city, packing 5 framed prints and everything else for my 2 1/2 weeks stay in the U.S) I had to do from 1am to 4am in the morning..

Needless to say, my trip to Los Angeles was great fun (besides having to recover from a bad flu). The biggest surprise to me was how well the workshop worked out and how talented all of our participants have been. Also it was great to make some new friends with such lovely people. I hope we still make a special blog just for the “street is serious” workshops and I’m looking forward to the next SIS in Berlin this summer.

  1. i am following your blog for a long time in a silent mode. I had to comment this group of photos, because it is amazing! really nice work! keep the good job and i will keep ‘reading’ you. congrats, dg

    Comment by dg — May 10, 2011 @ 6:39 pm
  2. i love this!

    Comment by zuza — May 10, 2011 @ 6:59 pm
  3. danke severin. sinnvollste bildschirm-zeit seit langem.

    Comment by ralf — May 10, 2011 @ 7:15 pm
  4. Inspiring photographs !!
    All the best!

    Comment by George Vintila — May 10, 2011 @ 7:17 pm
  5. It was great to find the new blog entry on FB. I am currently working on my last uni essays and this gave me the perfect opportunity for a well deserved break!
    Already looking forward for the next one!



    Comment by Salvador Bañó — May 10, 2011 @ 7:39 pm
  6. A fine series of photos !!!

    Comment by Ryan Peacock — May 10, 2011 @ 8:08 pm
  7. This really made my day!

    Btw, would you mind sharing how you go about maxing out the v750?

    Best regards!

    Comment by Johan Lindén — May 10, 2011 @ 8:15 pm
  8. wieder mal unglaublich gute fotos. hat richtig spaß gemacht den blog zu lesen. genau das richtige für diesen abend!

    Comment by SpanishJohnny — May 10, 2011 @ 10:00 pm
  9. Fantastic, Sev, some really great ones in there. It’s amazing how much I can learn (and have to learn) from seeing what you got while we were together. Looking forward to spending more time with these – thanks for doing the ball-busting work of getting them developed, scanned and uploaded …

    Comment by Michael Hacker — May 10, 2011 @ 10:15 pm
  10. Fantastic photos Severin! Great job with the workshop and take care of that flu!


    Wei Chuan

    Comment by Wei Chuan — May 11, 2011 @ 1:05 am
  11. Great stuff in this entry.

    Although, I think you have used the phrase “clash of civilizations” far too many times in your blog (past and present posts). I think you should stop making such blatantly misunderstood assumptions on people and practices from your photos. That phrase is historically loaded with so much BS about differences in human beings that is merely imagined and constructed.

    For example: The photo of the black woman carrying the bag on her head might not be ‘African’, rather an African American. And that practice of placing a bag on your head has been widely seen that maybe she just chose to do for practicality.

    Cheers and keep making awesome photos!

    Comment by Halli — May 11, 2011 @ 1:47 am
  12. Great work Sev, Are you in NY at all?

    Comment by Dwayne — May 11, 2011 @ 4:32 am
  13. Oh there will be a SIS workshop in Berlin? I would like to join. How do i do that?

    Comment by Henning — May 11, 2011 @ 7:25 am
  14. been to New York after my trip to LA this March. Looks like I’ll be in NY this fall another time. there are NY workshop rumors, but that’s it.

    @Halli: I know that’s a sensitive topic and I’m glad you commented. It’s a fact though that there is nobody in a western society who would carry a bag like that. It’s not that it isn’t practical, we just don’t do it and also can’t do it. It takes a lot of practice and a trained body to balance such a big and I assume heavy bag on your head. I don’t judge or value here, it’s simply an observation. A reason why I didn’t use the term ‘clash of cultures’ because how to carry a bag isn’t culture related but more depending on circumstances.

    Without trying to sound stupid, show me a ‘white’ example of someone carrying a huge bag on his/her head for ‘practical’ reasons.

    Comment by Severin Koller — May 11, 2011 @ 10:13 am
  15. Interesting you have here. Yes it’s a banksy!

    Comment by Pedro Cardigo — May 11, 2011 @ 2:05 pm
  16. Hi again Severin. Thanks for actually responding and engaging in this brief discourse. Other items in this blog that have led me to gasp is that photo of a guy in black-face pretending to be Obama in your 2008 Halloween party or some photo of a black man in a hat with writings about cotton fields in Switzerland with your added comment saying ‘Ironic, no?’ (I forget the date of postage. Also, this may all sound really stalkerish. haha). The point is, you have made some (odd) assumptions about the non-white people you’ve shot over the years. I understand you don’t hail from the most diverse country in the world and therefore your outlook may be limited, and therefore, stereotyped.

    Back to the woman with the bag (which is beginning to look like a pillow to me actually) and your hypothetical question. My response would be, what is the relevance of seeing a white person balance an item on their head or engage in ‘non-white’ practices? Would it then be ‘normalized’?? Suppose non-white Americans (who are still, you know, American) did this? Would it still be deemed ‘foreign’ or an anomaly? Think about it.

    The fact of the matter is, we do not know where this woman in the photo comes from. If she is indeed African American (which is likely) then she is American and has no association with the continent of Africa or their practices. Therefore, the ‘clash of worlds’ comment holds no meaning – except, however, a prejudicial one. (Which in no means do I think was your intent, by the way!).

    Here in North America, we are incredibly race-conscious and, if you choose to travel or in the future live in such places, I think you must be as well.

    I hope maybe I taught you something? Again, great photos and love to see your open-mindedness.
    : )

    Comment by Halli — May 11, 2011 @ 4:47 pm
  17. Man, those rolleiflex shots rule.
    No way, they’re far better, really.
    The whole set is great as usual but those squares, well, I’d just print ‘em myself ’cause they’re wonderful.
    Good luck with processing, we all know it’ll be a long job! ^_^

    Comment by Alessandro Melillo — May 11, 2011 @ 5:40 pm
  18. Grandioser Beitrag…Mehr davon.
    An dem SIS Workshop in Berlin hätte ich auch Interesse…gibts dazu schon nähere Infos?

    Grüsse Pascal

    Comment by Pascal Faller — May 11, 2011 @ 8:53 pm
  19. dude, it was so nice to meet you – we had some great times shooting together. and that lunch we had downtown was incredible… thank god we didn’t find a good enough sushi place. ;)

    i gotta say, i loved seeing your interpretation of the same neighborhood… i was most excited for your post to see how you saw downtown LA.

    thanks for the piss photo by the way, i almost forgot about that gem. weeks’ flashlight is pow.er.ful!!!!

    hope you’re well bro & hope to hang out again soon! i’m chilling with your berlin friend in my city nowadays… really cool how everything comes together.

    talk soon, R.S.H.N.

    Comment by Arthur — May 12, 2011 @ 1:45 am
  20. [...] Severin Koller war in Los Angeles unterwegs, mehr Infos zu seinen 2,5 Wochen Aufenthalt und eine Menge mehr Bilder bekommt ihr direkt bei ihm im Blog, hier gibt’s zumindest schon einmal eine kleine Auswahl seiner Street Photography. [...]

    Pingback by Severin Koller – Los Angeles – Street Photography | Der Typ von Nebenan — May 12, 2011 @ 11:18 am
  21. “I understand you don’t hail from the most diverse country in the world and therefore your outlook may be limited, and therefore, stereotyped.”

    funny how you yourself make assumptions about general narrow-mindedness, clumsiness in regards to matters such as ‘race’ (a term we are very careful with here in central europe) and a lack of diversity within the people and countries of central europe.

    now of course, you are going to say, with every right to do so, that this is not at all what you meant and that I misunderstood you.
    then I say, well, maybe you did misunderstand what severin tried to say, ‘discourse’ (which is a very interesting and often-discussed cultural phenomenon) is a complex thing and even less clear on the internet.

    schreib mir doch mal irgendwo, was und wann ihr euch in berlin so vorgestellt habt.

    Comment by Simon — May 12, 2011 @ 12:25 pm
  22. Hey Sev,

    Besides my comments on facebook about your blog, after looking at it and really taking my time, I didn’t only enjoy your street work I also find you have a great talent for portraits… there’s always that little something different from the usual or predictable shots that I’m expecting. Nice work man! Really hope we get a chance to meet again.

    Comment by Richard Polom — May 13, 2011 @ 2:53 am
  23. Reading your entries always gives me a few chuckles here & there. Sometimes it even makes my day less depressing :\

    I especially enjoyed the shots in Chinatown.
    Thanks for sharing!

    Comment by Desmond. T — May 14, 2011 @ 3:12 am
  24. Hi Severin!

    Würdest Du mir auch die Infos zum SIS workshop in Berlin schicken? Je nach dem, wann er stattfindet, würd ich auch gerne hinkommen…

    Lg, Anja

    Comment by Anja — May 15, 2011 @ 2:34 pm
  25. Some really good stuff here, greatly enjoyed it

    Comment by Jerome — May 15, 2011 @ 5:17 pm
  26. I really liked the pictures, especially the pigeons and the two girls in the window. But and I guess, because these were photos of the workshop I missed the cosy “life of Sev” pictures. This entry somehow kept the distance…

    Comment by Scheff — May 16, 2011 @ 4:18 am
  27. Congrats Severin, for being featured in the NY times Lens blog! :D


    Comment by Wei Chuan — May 26, 2011 @ 4:27 am
  28. hi, do you have any experience in developping the tri-x @800 in hc-110 dil B( 1+31), i can’t find the correct developing time.

    Avelino Oliveira

    Comment by Avelino — May 30, 2011 @ 4:26 pm
  29. nice photos!!!

    Comment by Jay Patts — May 31, 2011 @ 6:43 am
  30. Avelino, I too use HC. At 20 degrees centigrade, it should be somewhere between 6:30/6:45 (iso 400) and 11:30/11:45 (iso 1600).

    Comment by Johan Lindén — May 31, 2011 @ 12:16 pm
  31. Thanks Johan,
    for iso 800 is the same time?
    I read somewhere that don’t need to correct times for push 1 stop, it is true?

    Comment by Avelino — May 31, 2011 @ 2:28 pm
  32. sorry guys, the comments aren’t a forum. maybe you continue by email.


    Comment by Severin Koller — May 31, 2011 @ 3:41 pm
  33. Very good job !

    Comment by ESchon — May 31, 2011 @ 4:21 pm
  34. I love your blog! Keep up the good work!

    Comment by checkersf — June 4, 2011 @ 4:10 pm
  35. I like black and white photo`s. Super..

    Comment by Rinze — June 4, 2011 @ 10:02 pm
  36. Hi Severin, my brother will go in 2 days to Austria – Innsbruck put music in a disco, and i would like him to buy me a LEICA, because they must be cheaper than in Portugal, where can he find a used one?

    Comment by Filipe Carneiro — June 7, 2011 @ 2:09 pm

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