Things are changing at the Flower Market.
I've been photographing at Pak Khlong Talat, Bangkok's enormous wholesale flower market, for more than six years. It's a favourite location for field-trips with students at the Bangkok Photo School and I've led over 200 private workshops there.
It's always been a wonderful location for street photography. It's located beside the Chao Phraya river (Pak Khlong Talat means "Market by the canal"), so the light floods in to the waterside areas and bounces off the river in the afternoon and early evening. The market is not on the tourist trail so although it's not far from popular attractions like the Grand Palace, Wat Pho and Wat Arun, it 's always had a very unspoilt feel.
It's also a very friendly place and the market traders and stall holders are always wonderfully hospitable and welcoming, which makes it a great place to help build students' confidence. There are always great opportunities for street portraits and I've taken students' prints back to market traders on many occasions.
The market is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and is often busiest after 10pm, when local florists, restauranteurs and hoteliers send staff to collect flowers.
I've photographed the market at night for an assignment for the Bangkok 101 magazine and I guess I must have spent hundreds of hours walking around with my cameras. It's certainly become one of my very favourite places in Bangkok.
However, time stands still for no man and market is evolving. Large sections of the old, wooden market have been demolished and are being replaced with concrete and steel. It looks like there might be a mall and some residential buildings under construction.
Nothing lasts forever and I'm not complaining about the march of progress. If I lived and worked in the market, I would probably be delighted to see it being modernised. However, I am grateful that I was able to spend time there before it disappeared. Photographing the market, I often felt that I was visiting a long-established community, where everyone knew each other, people worked, ate and laughed together and I sincerely hope that the community spirit survives the re-modelling.
(Images made with a Lensbaby Composer & Sweet 35 lens on a Canon 5D MKIII and processed using VSCO 3 "Instant Film" tools.)