Sunday, 8 September 2013

A Photograph Series: The Seoul Street Vendor

"If you build, he will come." That's the line someone whispered to Kevin Costner in his movie, Field of Dreams, inspiring him to build a baseball field in his cornfields.

But in Seoul, there aren't cornfields, only streets and sidewalks, and some of which are full of vendors, who may have heard someone whisper to them these words: "If you sell, they will buy!"

So, one afternoon, as I was seated comfortably on the second floor of a coffee shop in Hongdae, overlooking a sidewalk, I noticed a vendor starting to set up his wares at a location below. To me, it was just an empty space, but for him, it was a perfect spot!  There was a heavy pedestrian traffic! All of whom could be a potential customer! And as he started to put his mini-shop together, an idea came up. Why don't I take a series of photographs to chronicle on how sidewalk vendors in Seoul start their day?

So, here they are. A series of photographs from the time the vendor brings in his low steel stands, to arranging his display of knickknacks, until his first sale of the day:
(An empty space to our eyes, but a perfect location to his.                                        Heavy pedestrian traffic!)
                              (Setting up his steel stand)
                                (Here come the boxes)

                        (The shop is now taking shape...)
                      (...and drawing in interested customers)

                                (And they're buying!)
                         (Indeed, if you sell, they will buy!) 
So, the next time you see a vendor while you're walking along the streets of Seoul, why don't you stop by, and take a look at what he or she is selling? Who knows? The knickknacks will interest you, too!

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