Thursday, November 18, 2010
Thematic Photographic 124 - Candid
Real or not?
Laval, QC, November 2010
[Click photo to embiggen]
Welcome to the new Thematic Photographic theme, candid. If you're new to our weekly photo sharing activity, the deal is actually pretty simple: Post a pic to your blog or web site, then leave a comment here letting people know where to find it. Feel free to visit other participants to share the joy. Repeat often. It's not a competition...just an informal way to stretch our photographic bounds a bit. Click here for more background, otherwise, buckle up for the ride...
About this pic: I'm in a shopping mall - Carrefour Laval - with my mom. I've been shopping for shoes, of all things, because my beloved old Sperry Top-Siders decided to wear out somewhere between London and Montreal. We're wandering through the top floor of The Bay - think old-style retail that's been around, I kid you not, for 340 years. As I pass a window display, I notice the silhouetted mannequins and make a mental note to return, because the aesthetic speaks to me.
Before long, we're done here, so we turn to leave. I remember the scene and ask my mom to follow me while we make a slight detour. I reach into my camera bag and pull out...my wife's camera. I sweep into the general area only to be confronted by a well-coiffed saleslady who masks the cigarette wrinkles on her face with too much makeup and burned-red dyed hair. She asks if she can help me. I flash a shopping bag from the Bay, identify myself as a journalist, and in rapid-fire Quebecois-joual French, tell her I'm taking a picture.
It's more a statement than anything else. I don't ask for permission and I don't wait for a response. I just sprawl down on my stomach - I figure a low angle works best - and quickly compose. People stop and stare. One less observant soul, the man on the left of this shot, wanders into the shot, apparently unaware that I'm shooting (and probably about to get my sorry tail kicked out of the store.)
But I don't want to be here very long in case the mall-rent-a-cops have been summoned. So I trip the shutter anyway. He wanders away before I shoot the second and third shots, but a quick check of the screen to ensure I've got something to justify this insane stunt confirms that the first shot is the keeper. I bubble about it with my mom as I get into the car, and indeed for the entire drive home. It's my favorite picture from the trip, and I hope you enjoy it, too.
Your turn: This week's theme, candid, is all about capturing people when they may not be aware you're doing so. It's about telling stories of people as they are, not as they're trying to be. It can take any form - remember, photography has nothing to do with right and wrong - and I know you'll have fun with it. As we've done in previous weeks, I'd like add a slight twist this week by encouraging each of you to bring along a friend for the photographic ride. This thing becomes even more fun the bigger it gets, no?
One more thing: I think I may have inadvertently teased this week's theme as sepia. Apologies for the confusion. I'll queue sepia up for next week.