Nigerian-born photographer Misan Harriman has a global following, but during lockdown he has turned his lens on Woking to capture a series of breath-taking images for his new project, ‘Lost in Isolation’.
With travelling for work temporarily put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Misan found himself with valuable time on his hands. Making the most of his outstanding talent for capturing striking photography, he sought to capture the community spirit of Woking with his latest project.
The inspiration behind the project came from Misan’s observation of the Woking community as people came together to navigate a challenging and unprecedented situation. Misan wanted to capture the community’s response and celebrate Woking’s everyday heroes as seen through the lens.
‘Lost in Isolation’ is a unique photographic series which aims to convey that while lockdown isolated us from one another, we have in fact been found in solitude.
“We’ve had time to reflect on ourselves, on our relationships with others. While we were physically distanced from one another, we connected on a deeper level. Families have become closer than ever, and neighbours have become friends”, explains Misan.
“I wanted to capture the essence of Woking’s community frontline workers, such as butchers, bakers and shopkeepers. These are the real heroes of society and I wanted to document their hard work on camera for future generations.”
A photographer to the stars, including Rhianna, Stormzy and even the Royal Family, Misan used his time in lockdown to take photos of his family, friends, neighbours and people he met on his journeys in Woking.
“To me, the lens was a witness to the best of humanity during lockdown and I’m honoured to have been able to preserve these moments and to capture the best of humanity.”
Misan’s photography is striking and through this series of images he hopes to address important societal issues and inspire change. His photography has struck a chord with his many followers and most recently his photographs of the Black Lives Matter movement were selected for display in London’s Piccadilly Square.
“It’s been so humbling to be able to photograph such an important cause. Seeing my work up on display in Piccadilly Square was an incredible sight and I am so proud to have the opportunity to spread awareness of a cause that I feel passionate about."
"Photography to me is so much more than just a skill, or a career. It’s designed to distribute and encourage empathy. I want people to see my work and care about making a difference, no matter what the issue is. I want to show people how to make a change in the issues they care about.”
While Misan’s photography takes him across the globe, he loves his Woking home. Originally choosing to establish his base in Woking for the quick and easy commute to London, the photographer and his family have grown to love the town itself.
“The ease of commuting combined with being able to enjoy the amenities of living in Surrey, such as the beautiful villages and abundance of green spaces, made Woking the perfect choice."
"It’s clear that there has been a lot of investment in Woking. I enjoy taking my family into the central square and we always make sure to pick up some fantastic produce from Boz’s fruit market."
"I love the vibrancy and diversity of Market Walk. It’s multi-cultural in its offerings. I particularly love that I can get Nigerian food there- it gives me a real taste of home.”
The photographer has made the most of the break from his hectic work schedule to spend time with this family.
“I’ve got a young family, and a big dog! We’ve been making the most of Woking’s lovely green spaces. During lockdown, we have missed our usual social lives and we can’t wait to see our friends. We’ve got a young baby and we’re ready to introduce her to our wider circle of family and friends. She will need a break from all the camera attention she has been getting!”
Follow Misan’s work on Instagram and share your own images from lockdown with #WEAREWOKING on social media.