Tom Bradley

Riding Shotgun
I spend a great deal of my time working in countries across Africa and South East Asia, often spending a great deal of the day travelling in NGO vehicles, usually large heavy duty 4x4s. I take great pleasure in sitting in the front passenger seat and watching the world go past.

Early on I started experimenting with photographing out the window as we drove quickly past people on the road. Faces, actions, expressions I would barely have time to notice were observed in detail long after I'd got back from my travels.

Some sort of barrier was broken down, but I knew it was more complex than that. There was a momentary relationship with me not as an individual, but as a white foreigner, in a speeding, powerful NGO car, and with an expensive camera in my hand. Some of the time people are caught completely unaware, others have had a split second to react or understand what's happened.

As I go through the past 8 years of these images I realise the way I have gathered these documents is reflective of the past relationship between my country and theirs. I have used my privileged place in the world to accomplish what I want without permission, and they have been powerless to stop me.

All photographs shot between 2009-2017.