‘Less is more’ could be applied to Ben Marcin’s photo’s. The solitary houses in his photo’s used to be part of a row of homes, a city block. But they wouldn’t have stood out much then, especially not with brick colors. The lack of neighbouring buildings seems to increase the photogenic value of the ‘Last House Standing’, as the series is called. There’s not much photoshopping done either. Ben only uses photoshop to make adjustments he would otherwise have made in a darkroom, for sharpness or contrast for example. ‘The trick is to hold back’, he likes his images to look normal. Much of the photoshopping done nowadays is just a trick. ‘I don’t want to be better than perfect’, doing that just takes away from the subject in the image Ben finds.
So what’s the story behind these buildings? The neighborhood has been torn down by municipalities. The only houses left standing are the ones that are still inhabited, you have to be careful with these. Owners have gotten wary of people taking photo’s of their homes, afraid it might be another developer with some trick up their sleeves to get the last house on the block. Ben will eventually go back to photograph the buildings when they’re no longer there. Or rather, to photograph the empty space left behind by the last house standing. His photo’s reflect his personality in that he’s an introvert, he likes to be alone. You’ll notice that in his other photo series as well, solitary objects be it houses or trees.