Cities take on a different persona at night, and they can either be full of energy or melancholy, depending on the city, the districts, or time of the night. Street photographers who prowl their towns by nightfall know this very well, and it’s interesting how their photo narratives reveal which part of the night they prefer to document. For Hamburg-based photographer Mark Broyer, it’s the colorful after hours of his city.
For a street photography project entitled After Hours in Hamburg done from 2016 to 2017, Mark roamed the empty streets of his town with the goal of capturing beauty in the ordinary. Instead of a gloomy photo story, the results show an interesting glimpse of city life, most likely Hamburg in the way many of us haven’t seen it before. Who would have thought city life could still look fascinating during its silent and sleepy hours?
Color is everywhere in Mark’s nighttime serenade for his city, and true to his mission, it’s in the simple everyday objects and corners we typically don’t give much attention. A closed corner shop, shutters splashed with graffiti, a hotel entrance, lit up driveways, a window revealing the colored walls or amber-colored light inside, the neon lights of a bar approaching closing time, just to name a few. Browsing through the project, which is now on its second volume, feels like taking a quiet, scenic walk around town in rainbow-colored glasses.
If Stefano Gardel captured the pervading darkness of London, Mark painted Hamburg with a glow that only comes to life when the sun sets and the city lights up. With the streets completely empty and still, the colors take center stage in this dramatic and inspiring take on street photography at night.
Make sure to check out the two volumes of After Hours in Hamburg on Mark Broyer’s Behance page.