Beguiling Nocturnes

The Canadian photographer Greg Girard (b. 1955) has been documenting the rapid pace of change, both social and physical, across south-east Asia over the past three decades for Asiaweek and other journals. But it is the evocative photographic series he produced in the late 1970s and early 1980s of his native Vancouver and other cities across North America, which are the focus of this feature. These early works are an introduction to the multi-hued colour palette and use of unusual light sources which Girard has continued to employ. His predominantly nocturnal photographs depict commonplace scenes, cast in an otherworldly glow of neon and streetlights. Girard seeks out the beauty in seemingly down- at-heel surroundings, playing up the characteristics that render these scenes seductive in their decay. Girard has exhibited internationally, and continues to work on assignments for publications such as TIME, National Geographic and New York Times.