Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 4
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
28 Sep 2013

Fisherman catches cat fish from Buffalo Bayou, skinning it with pliers, and frying it in oil.

Thumb sm
Kenyans Supply Somalis Herbal High 2013
Kenya
By Transterra Editor
12 Jun 2013

Khat, a stimulant similar to the coca leaf in South America, is heavily distributed within Nairobi, the largest city and capital of Kenya. It is cultivated in Meru and arrives in Eastleigh, a suburb of Naroibi, at 2 pm everyday. Khat is pre-ordered and bundled with the customer's name written on each sack, which local vendors then collect and sell to local chewers. Local khat vendors come to Eastleigh to sell the stimulant to Somalis who make up most of their customer base. Since it's an important cash crop for Kenyans and Ethiopians, Khat is a thriving business. It is now Ethiopia's second largest export behind coffee. Though khat has been banned by the US and other European countries, it remained legal in the UK until the beginning of July, when it was also outlawed. Previously it had been shipped to the UK four days a week from Kenya.

View More Photos:
http://transterramedia.com/collections/1069

Thumb sm
Addiction in Paris
Paris, France
By Transterra Editor
18 Apr 2013

The number of drug addicts in France is difficult to assess. The first problem to look at is defining the addiction, and which products are most common (cocaïne, weed, crack, ecstasy...). The number is believed to be between 150 000 and 300 000. In Paris, a city project named « shoot rooms » is set to open in October where associations helping drug addicts will be able to help and assist roughly 200 drug addicts. But before this opening, in December 2012, I went to meet drug addicts to better understand their day to day life. Lot of them refused to answer questions and being photographed. Only one has accepted to be followed during the day to better understand his life. I met him at CAARUD office, an association helping drug addicts in the La Chapelle area, north of Paris. The area between the La Chapelle subway and the La Chapelle gate, is one of the most important places for drugs use in Paris. Under highways, drug users smoke cocaïne and crack every day, searching for money to pay for their drug use. Philippe is one of them. He is 58 years old and drug addict for more than 20 years.
He would like to quit, but is unable to do it. For Philippe, everyday is the same thing: smoking cocaïne and searching for money to pay for it. Over the months we spent together I better understood what being a drug addict meant. At the beginning of each month, he receives money from his Togolese family. With that money, he pays for a room in a hotel where he stays during one week. His every day is the same. He wakes up, doesn’t eat breakfast. Goes to La Boutique; the center for an association helping drug addicts. He meets other drug addicts at the center and speaks with a social assistant. The association gives Philippe some new crack pipes so that disease contamination can be avoided. He then goes to meet the dealer, buying cocaïne and going back to the hotel to smoke. He sleeps a little bit, eats a burger, and later going back to smoke more.
But after one week Philippe doesn't have enough money to pay the hotel so he has to leave the room. At this time he decides to keep small amount of money he has to buy cocaïne, and everyday he goes to Sleep-in, a drug addicts’ helping association which offers addicts a bed to sleep in. Even if he doesn't like this place because of the violence between drug addicts, he has no choice because he has to sleep there. In order to smoke his cocaine he has to go under highways, or in some squats. After few days he doesn't even have enough money to buy cocaïne. So he sells his mobile phone to the dealer and tries to buy more cocaine.
Philippe is tired of this kind of life. He would like to go in rehabilitation. He has already done so once but he failed at the end and came back in Paris where his demon took him back.
This reportage wasn't easy to do because following a drug addict is quite complicated. Rendez-vous were complicated and I had to search for him during few hours. But Philippe, like lot of drug addicts in Paris, stays in the La Chapelle Area, so I always found him. But one day I didn't. So I went back the day after and many days after that. Finally, he called to tell me that he has been arrested and is now in jail. He doesn't like it but he knows that it's also a kind of rehab, and he hopes not to fail again when he is released.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 4
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
17 Apr 2013

Few weeks later, I find back Philippe in a laundromat.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 17
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
16 Apr 2013

Philippe smoking cocaïne at a laundromat.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 14
Paris
By Simon Letellier
16 Apr 2013

Philippe showing a few crack pipes and a small strip used for preparing the cocaïne.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 1
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
16 Apr 2013

Philippe is happy to show his new teeth which was paid for by his social insurance.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 15
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

Even if he feels tired, Philippe wants a last shoot and goes out to try and find some. Outside it’s snowing.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 2
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

Philippe showing his last tooth. Smoking crack and cocaïne destroys the teeth. Most drug addicts suffer from damaged teeth and some have none.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 4
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

At the end of the day, Philippe doesn’t have any more money to pay for his room in a hotel. An association for helping drug addicts helps him by paying for a room. It is freezing outside and he doesn't want to sleep in the streets.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 7
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

At the end of the day Philippe is tired. He didn’t eat anything in the day and he is far-fetched.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 3
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

At the end of the day, Philippe is tired. He didn’t eat anything in the day and he is exhausted.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 8
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
05 Mar 2013

Philippe tidies up the few things he brought to the room.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 10
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe smoking cocaïne below a highway. This area is full of drug addicts. Dealers are not far from the area, but they stay hidden.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 15
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe smoking cocaïne on the bottom of a highway. He is always aware of his surroundings and watching around to see if any cops are nearby.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 8
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe is quickly high after his shoot.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 7
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Few minutes after his shoot, Philippe wants one more. But he doesn’t feel secure in this place and decides to move to another one.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 12
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

On the bottom of another highway, Philippe is smoking cocaïne in a makeshift shelter built with waste materials found in the area.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 6
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

On the bottom of another highway, Philippe is smoking cocaïne in a makeshift shelter built with waste materials found in the area.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 5
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe smoking cocaïne. He used to smoke it around ten times per day.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 17
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe smoking cocaïne on the bottom of a highway.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 9
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Mar 2013

Philippe is preparing a shoot below a highway.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 13
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
11 Feb 2013

Philippe is preparing a shoot with a crack pipe and a piece of cocaïne

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 16
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Feb 2013

Smoking cocaïne acts like an appetite suppressant. Drug addicts' nutrition is completly disorganised because of a bad diet.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict 12
Paris, France
By Simon Letellier
04 Feb 2013

Philippe is preparing a shoot with a crack pipe and a piece of coke.

Thumb sm
Drug Addict
Paris
By Simon Letellier
04 Feb 2013

The number of drug addicts in France is difficult to be exactly defined. The first problem is to define the addiction, and for which product (cocaïne, weed, crack, extasy,...). But the number vwould be between 150 000 and 300 000. In Paris, a city project named « shoot rooms » should open in October where drug addict helping associations will be able to better help and assist about 200 drug addicts. But before this opening, in December 2012, I went to meet drug addicts to better understand their today life. Lot of them refuse to answer questions and being on pictures. Only one has accepted to be followed during the day to better understand his life. I met him at CAARUD office, a drug addict helping association in La Chapelle area. The north of Paris, between La Chapelle subway and La Chapelle gate, is one of the most important place for drugs use in Paris. Under highways, drug users smoke cocaïne and crack every day, searching for money to pay their drug use. Philippe is one of them. He is 58 years old and drug addict for more than 20 years.
He would like to quite, but is unable to do it. So everyday is the same thing : smoking cocaïne and searching for money to pay for it. Over the months we spend together I bertter understood what being a drug addict means. At the begining of each month, he receives money from his Togolese family. With it, he pays a room in a hotel where he stays during one week. Everyday is the same. He waking up. No breakfast. Going to La Boutique, a drug addict helping association. Meeting some other drug addicts. Speaking with social assistant. Taking some new crack pipes given by the association in order to avoid disease contamination. Then going to meet the dealer, buying cocaïne and going back to the hotel to smoke. Sleeping a little bit, eating a burger, and going back to smoke.
But after one week Philippe doesn't have enough money to pay the hotel so he has to leave the room. At this time he decides to keep the few money he has to buy cocaïne, and everyday he goes to Sleep-in, a drug addict helping association which offers a bed to sleep. Even if he doesn't like this place because of the violence between drug addicts, he has no choice he has to sleep there. And for smoking his cocaine he has to go under highways, or in some squats. After few days he doesn't even has enough money to buy cocaïne. So he sells his mobile to the dealer and tries to get another one.
Philippe is tired about his life. He would like to go in rehab. He already did one but he failed at the end and came back in Paris where his demon took him back.
This reportage wasn't easy to do because following a drug addict is quite complicated. Rendez-vous were complicated and I had to search after him during few hours. But Philippe, like lot of drug addicts in Paris, stays in La Chapelle Area, so I always have found him. But a day I didn't. So went back the day after and the day after again. Finally He called me to tell me that he was arrested and he was not in jail. He doesn't like it but he knows that it's also a a kind a rehab, with the hope to not failing when he will be released.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 17
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
19 Dec 2012

Fisherman walks out of his the underpass where he lives, carrying "Mr Happy," his homemade whip.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 9
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Frog and Fred, Gulf war veterans, sit in the park near downtown.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 10
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Fisherman sits down to dinner in the cave that he shares with other vets, an HIV positive security guard, a circus worker, and his twenty cats.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 16
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Fisherman patches up Frog's head. Another veteran hit him in the head with a brick during a dispute over a bottle of vodka.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 14
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

A catfish, caught by Fisherman, flounders on a rope in the Bayou.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 13
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Fisherman lights his way in his cave with a head lamp. He has no source of heat or light.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 12
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Frog, Gulf War veteran, sits in the cave he sleeps in beneath downtown Houston.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 5
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Fisherman fries the catfish he caught in Buffalo Bayou in oil.

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 6
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Laundry drying outside on the edge of Buffalo Bayou, beneath "the caves."

Thumb sm
Friends in Low Places 7
Houston, Texas
By Spike Johnson
13 Dec 2012

Fisherman feeds the twenty cats that he's raised from kittens. They live with him in his cave.

Frame 0004
X Addicts
Oxford, UK
By Kirk Ellingham
01 Aug 2010

The Ley Community is a drug rehabilitation centre in Yarnton, Oxfordshire.
They help men and women build new lives after addiction to drugs and alcohol.

I grew up in and around the south London area. At the age of 16 I started smoking crack cocaine and getting more into crime. I was hanging around with people a lot older than me, in big groups fighting a lot and committing a lot of crime, getting into a lot of trouble. Back then it was all about who was the maddest and who was the baddest.

I grew up around a lot of drugs and violence and back then I thought that was what it was all about, being the big hard man. This led me to spend a lot of my life in prison from the age of 16. When I was out there involved in all the madness I didn't care about anyone or anything, I was a mess. Through all this my partner, who I met when I was 16, stuck by me. I was being very violent, drinking too much all the time.

When I was 20 my son was born and I was in prison at the time and that hurt me but it was down to my own stupidity. I came out and tried to stay off drugs but I couldn't do it and in the end my partner left me and took my son and I went off and ended up in prison on a robbery charge looking at a few years locked up again. I'd just had enough of the lifestyle, the drugs and spending all my life locked up. I spoke to a drugs worker in the prison and they said what about a rehab. I thought I would give it a go. I went to court and the judge sent me here.

Coming to the Ley was strange after spending so much time in prison and putting on the hard man act all that time. Everyone here was so nice to me, kind, caring and helpful. I've been here a while and I'm getting used to things and learning a lot about myself, the real me. When you look at the people at the end of the programme you see the benefits and if you put in the work you will get there. I'm rebuilding my relationship with my partner of seven years who has never used drugs and my son who is three years old now.

Now I'm looking forward to the future and being a good father and having a good life, a clean life. I know here I will learn what I need to live that life, I'm done with my old life, I now see it was nothing but crap but I now know my future will be good. My family and people that know me and even I can see a change in me and it's a good change. I would say to anyone that really wants to sort their life out that this is the place.

At times it is not easy but it’s what we need. My future is now about getting a job and a nice little place to live, once I have done this programme, and being a proper family with my partner and my son and living a drug and crime free life. Just being happy and grateful for the things I've got and being a good father and to make sure my son doesn't go down the road I did. I grew up without my father but I'm now getting my life back and my son will grow up with his father there for him and I'm really happy I've got this chance to get my life together.