We sat down with Salvo Toscano and talked about his new commission 'Local Heroes' in association with Reading-on-Thames Festival.
 
Salvo is a Reading based photographer, for him photography is a way to "document and appreciate what I see and experience, observing aspects related to place and belonging. Images of people, things and places, on their own or interacting within an environment, observing the world as it changes before it changes and recording it so that’s not forgotten. Observing and trying to understand why I feel attracted to something or somebody. But also to discover and understand the new and different and uncover those common traits, affinities that bring us together."
 
What excites you about the Local Heroes commission?
"I have always felt a fascination with the idea of home, belonging, relationship with a place and the people that make up this “home”, the community around me. It is an ongoing theme of my work - constantly work in progress - and some of it exhibited in Reading in the past. I am always very enthusiastic to discover new and diverse aspects of the community. This commission gives me the opportunity to continue exploring “home” and document and celebrate the people."
 
What do you look for in a Local Hero?
"Heroes often do not know they are heroes and they will not tell you that they are heroes. They are humble and strong. But they all have a story to tell, a story of making a difference, of being unique in their own special way. I would like them to tell me their stories."
 
What's your favourite part / parts of Reading to photograph?
"I do not really have a favourite one. Different parts tell me different stories of the town, of different periods, of different lives. However, the canal and the Thames have a certain charm and “Waterways” is a recent series I worked on exploring this aspect of the town."
 
Click here to view the "Waterways" series.