People are the main subject of Vincent’s classical looking, black and white photographic work. Leaving out the colours allows him to focus on the people, their emotions and evocative moments. The portraits do not just show faces, neither are they candid shots. It is obvious that the people shown are posing. The portraits tell without words about the proudness of the person being photographed. Vincent states the following about this: “Photography takes place during trips. In most of the cases there is a language barrier between me and the person being photographed. By just looking and without words there is an exchange of respect. The portrait is made during this moment of trust. This kind of interaction is the concept behind my style, visible in my portraits: it is all about ‘making’ and not ‘taking’ or even stealing the portrait.” This approach works very well, the portraits transport proudness and trust and with some imagination the viewer can feel the interaction between Vincent and the person. Besides the portraits, Vincent also focuses on street photography. In this part of his work the approach is, of course, different. Here it is all about looking, searching and seeing what is going to happen in the next few seconds. Then, when found, the expected moment is frozen. This is neither ‘making’ nor ‘taking’ it is more about ‘finding’ says Vincent.

It is reality that in our daily rush we easily overlook these unique decisive moments. The street photographs made by Vincent are eye-openers, they show what is around us every day.

Vincent de Groot was born on December 27th, 1964 in Holland. Today, he has his residence in France, close to the Swiss and German borders. During his youth Vincent intended to study photography, however, he decided to study telecommunications and to keep photography for his spare time, which quickly became rare. In 2001 he again became interested in photography. It took him some years to find his personal style. This finally happened when his wife challenged him to focus on people. It was in Mali, in 2007 where he found himself making a first portrait of a man with his grandson. This challenge and the resulting portrait was the inspiration needed to find his personal style.

Vincent’s autodidactic photographic skills developed quickly. In the more recent past, street photography became another subject of his work.

The photographs have been featured in various magazines and publications. Beside this, they have been presented in various solo and group exhibitions worldwide. Vincent has visited various parts of the world; places that are not typical destinations for travellers but worth a closer look. We could mention Senegal, Mali, Myanmar, Syria, Cuba, Albania and many more. The photographs present insights into the life in these places. Of course there is much more to tell about those countries and the people there. Even when the images speak for themselves, Vincent can talk for a long time about impressions and experiences he has collected. The conversation always ends with the encouraging words: “Go, See, Feel and Experience it yourself!”

While continuing the combination of photography and travelling, the style Vincent uses for the portraits follows a straight path. Concerning street photography, he today challenges himself to find and add surrealistic ingredients, sometimes even without people.

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