When I started regularly photographing street art over a decade ago wandering the streets of East and West London with my mate Sam “HowAboutNo”, not so many people were interested in the culture or doing this kind of photography. George MacDonald was! He created a photo based printed fanzine called Very Nearly Almost, usually abbreviated by its audience to VNA. I remember George wandering up and down the queues for urban art shows outside Black Rat Press and The Leonard St Gallery giving the zines away. Even though I had not started uploading any of my photos onto the net at the time of those early issues in 06/07, my gut reaction was “print is dead”, George proved me completely wrong.
Fellow contributing photographer Matt “Cheffo” Strutt has a very interesting interview with Editor in Chief George and Art and Design Director Greg in which they describe how the mag developed from being a photocopied stapled freebie to the lush feature filled publication it is today and how the culture has evolved in the years they have been covering it.
I have been proud to contribute photographs and the occasional article to VNA since about issue 6 or maybe 7, despite which Very Nearly Almost is still going strong.
The ethos behind the magazine (high quality photography) was touched upon in this article which appeared in the Evening Standard in 2010, down in the bottom corner a shot of the cover of Issue 11 features though the caption at the top, “street art’s NVA” does rather expose some poor sub-editing at the Eeny Stannit.
Being print based, many of the fascinating interviews with artists featured in VNA can only be found in the pages of a real copy you hold in your hands but fortunately many previous editions are still available as very reasonably priced back issues through the VNA shop . VNA is well worth considering for a subscription, Christmas is coming you know.
Interview Link: http://gcasfm.com/blog/very-nearly-almost