It is what it is…

I’ve been asking myself again what is documentary photography?
A recent definition I read stated “[documentary photography] tells stories about a place or an issue by observing and photographing people in their environment”

I ask, does it have to have people? If not what is the difference between still life and documentary? Or maybe street and documentary? In much the same way, we often find it hard to define if a particular picture is a street photo, or a portrait.

I am sure there are no clear definitions, and I would go so far as to say that it can be up to the photographer, or even the viewer.

These images are of a family trip we recently took to the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry. I would call them documentary, as they document the visit. You might call them still life, because they have no significance to you.

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