Street Photography by Marcel S. Pawlowski

Street Photography in Cleveland

A biker takes a rest in the Voinovich Bicentennial Park at lake Erie, in front of a view of downtown Cleveland, OH. (2013)
A biker takes a rest in the Voinovich Bicentennial Park at lake Erie, in front of a view of downtown Cleveland, OH. (2013)

I have lived in Cleveland, Ohio, from 2013 to 2016. Toward the end of my stay, from July 18-21, 2016, the Republican National Convention (RNC) is being held in town. And with it comes the attention of the world media. An estimated total of 15,000 journalists are covering every aspect within and around the convention. The RNC, the Republican’s idiosyncratic choice of presidential candidate, the protests, and the reactions to all that, will dominate the picture of Cleveland during that week and most likely beyond.

Both the changes brought to town with the RNC, and the fact that my stay in Cleveland is coming to an end, has motivated me to compile a portfolio of my favorite street photos taken in the city. I want to provide an alternative picture of Cleveland in times of the RNC. Having lived here for only three years makes me a mere visitor in town, but I hope that despite having a mostly outsider’s perspective I was able to capture some of the essence of the place and the people of Cleveland.

Cleveland is much more than what the world will see and focus on in this one week. Cleveland is grey but full of color, falling apart but rebuilding itself, segregated but diverse, self-deprecating but proud, struggling but successful, and truly American but full of ethnic influences (ranging from Italians, over German, to eastern European and Russian immigrant populations, as well as more recent arrivals from Asia and around the world to attend world-class universities). I have come to embrace and love this town and its people, and have strolled around countless times to documented everyday life in this city with my camera.

With these colorful street photos, I invite you to follow me on a tour around different neighborhoods, sights, and events that make living in Cleveland unique and enjoyable. The street photography tour starts in downtown Cleveland, takes you the east side neighborhoods of Little Italy and University Circle (where annual events such as the Feast of Assumption and Parade the Circle attract colorful crowds of people), and then continues to the west side areas of Ohio City (home of the busy West Side Market) and Tremont. And, in the interest of full disclosure, I’ve also included some shots from the severe, snowy winter Cleveland is known for (as one popular t-shirt in town reads: Cleveland, you’ve got to be tough).

Cleveland Street Photography

Please contact me if you are interested in featuring any of these images (credit & link required). Email:, Phone: (+1) 216-331-9382.