As it drops down through East London, the Lea Valley is a vast green area with a history of development and exploitation. Its river Lea has suffered severe alterations and you can still see uninhabited landscapes of wild vegetation and post-industrial remains in the immediate surroundings.
I have been photographing the Lea Valley for several years, as it has always given me a strong impression of isolation and boundary, yet it never occurred to me to make a project of my interest. However, encouraged by its enthralling characteristics and the amazement that I still experience whenever I walk through the area, I decided in the summer of 2017 to start the Lea Valley series.
Most of the photographs are portraits of strangers I often find alone – unplanned encounters so I never know who I will come across – combined with landscapes, industrial sites, and a few other subjects.
All images ©Felipe Restrepo