There is a side of St.Ives that rarely gets a mention, and this side is bigger and better than the amazing beaches, its more incredible than the Tate, it has much much much more impact than the tourist industry. This side is the locals, the community, the things that happen here. My plan is to document the side of St.Ives I love and see on a daily basis, though my photographs. Its a personal project I have been thinking about for a while.
This first glimpse of St.Ives is the Skatepark. My lovely artist friend Annabel Wilkes met me last week up there for a dog walk and said how she wanted to take some photos of the graffiti before it went forever. This is the first side of St.Ives many may not know about. For many years a small group of locals have been fund raising, applying for grants to build an amazing space for our kids to skate. A safe place, a wonderful place and they have reached their target, got permission and on January 1st 2021 our skatepark will be pulled down to make way for a new one. But with it will go the history of the gaffiti. I have no idea who tags the walls, but I must say I know its not everyones bag but I personally love graffiti. Mainly its kids, its their expression, their release and their art. I was determind to get some proper photos of it.
So here is the next side of St.Ives. A group of local girls from the local school who every Sunday get up in all weathers and volunteer at the local community orchard. They dig, they weed, they pick, they laugh lots too. I asked them if they wouldnt mind swinging by the skate park on their way to work for a few photos. As are all in a bubble at school, at The Orchard and are all firm friends so it worked. It was amazing for me to have kids that hang out here anyway, live here in the town, are schooled locally and volunteer for the town projects too. The most important part for me is to keep this documentation portraying the real St.Ives, the slightly more hidden St.Ives. To top it off this group of girls are totally lovely too, so it was a real honour to hear their banter, see them having fun and mostly watch them all trying to give me the serious teenage look I was after for these photos, when really all these girls do normally is laugh. They did it, mostly.