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NEW WORK: Million Dollar Squatters - Feedback please...

Hi all,

I have finished a story that I have been working on for a few months and I would like to have some feedback please.

The title of the story is Million Dollar Squatters.

You can see the images

With this story I have also made my first audio slideshow. I would be happy to receive some opinions on this as well.


Thank you very much for this, I hope you will enjoy the series.

Best wishes,


by [a former member] at 2007-11-25 16:11:25 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) London , United Kingdom | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Alex, Thanks for this it is very interesting and very well done!
My Compliments, Pete

by Pete Woronowski | 25 Nov 2007 16:11 | Saskatchewan, Canada | | Report spam→
very interesting story! how is it that it is legal to squat here?

by [former member] | 25 Nov 2007 19:11 | New York, United States | | Report spam→
nice set of pics, alex. reminded me of my first year in london – years ago – when i lived in various squats, mostly around Queens Gate but nowhere as nice as this.

on a technical note, the images seem to take a very long time to load – are they full-res?

erica: squatting is legal in london in the sense that you can live in a vacant house until the owner finds out and goes through the channels to have you evicted.
sometimes they dont find out, sometimes theyd rather have squatters than vandals.
breaking and entry is an offence and squatters do get harrassed but technically its not an arrestable offence in itself.

by david sutherland | 25 Nov 2007 23:11 (ed. Nov 27 2007) | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
very nice work alex.
—lets talk this week.


by [former member] | 26 Nov 2007 00:11 | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
I cant believe breaking and entering is legal over there? Squating my ass, If I ever found these guys in my house Id shoot ’em, so to speak. Cool story though.

by Jack Watson | 26 Nov 2007 01:11 | Boston, Massachusetts, United States | | Report spam→
very well done… enjoyed it a lot. best,

by [former member] | 26 Nov 2007 03:11 | Montreal, Canada | | Report spam→
I loved it- great interviews, strong photos…you can feel the
length of time Alex spent documenting this piece. The only thing Id add is voice over narration; but thats just me. The captions work fine, too… Also looks like you had a blast shooting the thing, what with the girls, weed and alcohol about…a happy project! I hope someone picks it up for syndication…super interesting.

by [former member] | 26 Nov 2007 04:11 | Salt Lake City, United States | | Report spam→
Hi all, thank you very much for your comments, I am happy you liked the story.

David: you mean the images on the website? Is it the single images once the gallery is on, or the loading of the gallery itself? Images are 520×340 100dpi. Won’t the images be too small when 72dpi on some monitors? They seem to load quick on my pc.

Jack: squatting is like in a legal limbo, you can squat, but you cannot break in, damage the property or steal electricity, gas or else. If you get caught doing that they can have you on criminal damage.

If the owner of the property leaves it empty and forget about it, and you can enter the property legally (or make it look like), change the locks, than you are covered until court proceedings go on, and this take time, especially in this kind of rich areas.

Houses there are mostly empty because the owners want to get planning permissions to build new houses, and these permissions are generally hard to get in this kind of areas because the rich neighbours don’t like having too many building sites around so they can make some sort of ‘pressure’. In the end, why wouldn’t you want to have some good squatter to look after your house while you are away rather than paying privare contractors to be there?

What I have learnt is that it is all based on finding agreement with the owners once they discovered you live there.

Srini: I will be in Italy from Thursday. I suggest we set a dinner for after the 7th of december. I will call you.

Eric: yeah, ehehe…typical part of the life of squatters over here, and i guess everywhre. They are happy people, no presssure to work or earn a lot of money, although most of them do have some sort of job.

On the other hand, you always have that degree of uncertainty that would prevent me to be able to live in a squat full time, although I had a ‘guest room’ in the houses as well…there was just too much space to fill… :)

Have a good week all of you,



by [former member] | 26 Nov 2007 10:11 (ed. Nov 26 2007) | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
alex :))…very cinematic and it’s the first story i’ve seen about squatting in palatial digs: that’s the unique bend to this story :))…well done…if my family and I visit London, can we crash there? ;)))

hope u get it published


by [former member] | 26 Nov 2007 11:11 | Toronto (for now), Canada | | Report spam→
Some days wife reckons I am a squatter……………………………………………………Alex, a fun watch

by Imants | 26 Nov 2007 11:11 (ed. Nov 26 2007) | in the bad books, Australia | | Report spam→
Good stuff Alex. I have learned something today. I had no idea this squatting was a possibility in London.

You have your way with reflections…nice work.

by Brambor | 27 Nov 2007 01:11 | Windham, United States | | Report spam→
Great documentary and Soundslide work, but IMHO the music doesn’t fit the photos and actually might detract the viewer from your work.

by Gregory Yapp | 27 Nov 2007 02:11 | Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | | Report spam→
i like these:





looks very different from my squatter friends in nyc!

by Erin Siegal McIntyre | 27 Nov 2007 02:11 | San Francisco, California, United States | | Report spam→
Thank you all. You can read more about it here http://www.squatter.org.uk/


by [former member] | 27 Nov 2007 16:11 | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
alex - wonderful… reminds me of the squats in paris as well

by Ninfa Bito | 28 Nov 2007 07:11 | Manila, Philippines | | Report spam→
Hey Alex, an interesting project. The subject’s quite fascinating – hard to believe the squatters can get away with it, yet at the same time these particular guys seem to be well-adjusted people who are not abusing the property and aare actually caring for it. Quite a different perspective to my old opinion of squatters being dirty homeless types with needles sticking out their arms. I guess these guys face that kind of stigma from the local community a fair bit.

Anyways, a very interesting story.

by Graham Roemmele | 28 Nov 2007 08:11 | Bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→

well yeah, you find all sort of people squatting these days, and the images is indeed the one you described above.
By being so many empty houuses/buildings around here some people use them as a home, some others to make parties, some
just to destroy te place yeah…

I did start some work on squatters before but I had to drop it as the contacts were a bit difficult to photograph and too much of
a standard for a story. Increadible enough, the group I ended up following was found on a friend’s London Paper (they run a little piece about them living in the first house they have found in the area)…which if you live in London you know what I am talking about. Basically these two papers (LPaper and LLite) lower the collective knowledge about
events a bit, and by being distributed for free have become the standard people over here read on their way home instead of a more concerned newspaper…in the end, keeping an eye on different publications was good, but you don’t expect to find good stories coming out of there too often..

Thank you all again,

Have a good one,


by [former member] | 28 Nov 2007 10:11 | London, United Kingdom | | Report spam→

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Pete Woronowski, Photographer Pete Woronowski
Saskatchewan , Canada
david sutherland, travel photographer david sutherland
travel photographer
London , United Kingdom
Jack Watson, Photographer Jack Watson
Bronx, Nyc , United States
Imants, gecko hunter Imants
gecko hunter
" The Boneyard" , Australia
Brambor, Money for Nothing and Sho Brambor
Money for Nothing and Sho
(talk to me)
Windham , United States ( PWM )
Gregory Yapp, Journalist Gregory Yapp
[undisclosed location].
Erin Siegal McIntyre, Photographer & Writer Erin Siegal McIntyre
Photographer & Writer
Tijuana , Mexico
Ninfa Bito, Ninfa Bito
Manila , Philippines
Graham Roemmele, Photographer Graham Roemmele
Bangkok , Thailand ( BKK )


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