Island Life: Photographs from the Martin Parr Foundation
Born in 1961, Toxteth
Shaw described being alienated by his full-on encounter with the British class system (as one of two northerners) when he left Toxteth to study photography at West Surrey College of Art and Design in Farnham – turning up to classes ‘pissed’ and causing ‘mayhem’. He turned to the nearby Sandy Hill area, photographing local ‘casuals’ on the razz who were charmed by his Liverpudlian accent, and captioning the prints in magic marker with ad hoc descriptor titles. After graduation he got a job as a night porter in a hotel where he made his signature work.