Photographer Martin Usborne Revisits A Childhood Fear Of Being Left Alone In A Car
We all have experiences from childhood, good and bad, that have stayed with us all our lives. For London photographer Martin Usborne, it was being left in a car at a young age.
“I don’t know when or where or for how long, possibly at the age of four, perhaps outside a supermarket, probably fifteen minutes only,” recounts Usborne. “The details don’t matter. The point is that I wondered if anyone would come back. The fear I felt was strong: in a child’s mind it is possible to be alone forever.”
While he went on to live a happy childhood despite this isolated experience, Usborne decided to revisit his fear of being alone and unheard in an evocative photo series titled The Silence of Dogs in Cars. Having a deep affinity for animals, he recreates the sentiment of abandonment that affects everyone, people and animals alike.
Thankfully, the dogs in the photographs weren’t actually locked in cars by their owners: they were matched with certain cars to create a harmonious, cinematic image. Though staged, the reactions of each dog — sad, expectant, angry or dejected — tug at our hearts, because they are so relatable, and so like us.