‘The Locals’ is a social documentary project photographed by Samantha Cliff. The series documents the regular customers that drink at the Albion pub in Farnham, Surrey. The series of photographs aims to document the customers and the working relationship that has been formed between them and Samantha.
This is a personal project to Samantha, talking about her work she expresses:
“As a bar tender within the Albion over the last year, I have formed a connection or working relationship with the customers. This bond I share with the customers made it easier for me to come in to the pub at any time of day and photograph a number of customers in pub, asking them to do, as I wanted. It was important for my project to have the customer relaxed and trusting me as a photographer, the same as they would do if I was on the other side of the bar serving them their drinks, so the working relationship I share with the customer would show through. This has been a hard project to construct due to the amount of test shoots that took place, I had to be aware if customers where getting frustrated with the camera I would only shoot for three hours at a time to insure I was not putting pressure on the customers. Unfortunately some of the interesting characters that I would of liked to photograph did not want to be photographed. Over all I think the customers and landlord have enjoyed seeing my project progress. ”
The series was constructed over many weeks and months at varying times of day to maximize the customer base that come into the pub. With the key positing of the customers within a set area at the bar ensured that the audience of the series would become as familiar to the bar settings and feel like one of the locals by the end of the series.