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.

42 comments:

Karen Sather said...

What happened to their heads? lol Very nice theme too! Well Carmi here is my take on Candid I hope you like it! ..and everyone else too, I can't wait to see all the posts!
http://twincitiesblather.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographic-124-candid.html

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srp said...

I SO had one ready for this theme! I think I missed out the last time you did "candid". I almost had one to go with your headless mannequins.... but that might have to wait for the sepia or another black and white. Anyway... this really was candid, as I am not a real photographer... although, the actual photographer should have thought of this for a real pose.

Lynne H. said...

Hi Carmi.. yes, I am a thematic Photography addict. Happy now?

Here is my post for this week:http://juluca27.blogspot.com/


Yours is amazing..I love it and would actually hang that in my home.. Bathrom or den perhaps.. I love unique.. Great job!!!!

Buff said...

Yup, I was psyched about the sepia... so I worked up a sepia candid.

http://randomoutrageous.blogspot.com/2010/11/oblivious-to-anything-but-world-of-good.html

Your capture of the mannequins is fabulous!

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

The man on the left is what makes the picture. Nice one, Carmi!

Max said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Max said...

Carmi - great picture, and I have to agree with Lynne H: I'm addicted!
Anyhoo, here's my pictures for this week.
Candid
Thanks for keeping this going

A Paperback Writer said...

Somehow I just can't leave these things alone, even when I don't have much from which to choose.
Okay, here's my try for this theme:

http://apaperbackwriter.blogspot.com/2010/11/photo-non-contest-124-candids.html

fredamans said...

This one I had to dig around for...

http://fredamans.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographic-candid.html

dennisthemennis.co.uk said...

as ever I am drawn into your words, I love this story and I love the thought of you taking this shot, Brilliant!!

Ill be back in 30 mins with mine.

dennisthemennis.co.uk said...

Here is Mine

Kalei's Best Friend said...

I had to think on this theme, here is mine:
http://afreshstartwithkalei.blogspot.com/2010/11/tp-124candid.html

The Gearheads said...

I like the story that goes with this picture, I can just imagine the sales lady's blood to start boiling as you lay down to take the shot.

The Gearheads said...

I forgot to add my TP124 here
-Mr

bruce said...

here are mine for this week....stepping on or over the the boundries again...



http://bruceejohnsonjadip.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photography-124-candidv1.html

Cathy said...

Here is mine for now. I plan on getting out to find something more interesting. Thanks for the challenge Carmi.
http://nccathy1.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographic-124-candid.html

Aunt Snow said...

Your comment about seeing people as they are, not how they're trying to be made me want to repost this post from 2008:

http://doves2day.blogspot.com/2008/12/fruit-seller.html

hapzydeco said...

Love to photograph people doing what they seem to love. Here is my take on candid.

Tony said...

oh man, that picture is so awsome. I like it a lot - I wish I could take pictures like that. I pretty much suck when it comes to taking pics - thanks for your comments on my blog, it was a very emotional time,much more emotional time than I thought it would be

Vicki said...

Great story! I find it amusing that even though your subjects will never detect what you are doing, you are very aware of who else might be watching.
Here is mine
http://writteninc.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographic-124-candid.html

kcinnova said...

Love the headless group posing for you, and the one guy who has his head on... and yet he is the one who does not know he is being photographed.

Alexia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alexia said...

oops link wouldn't work last time.

I'm not too good at candid shots, but here's my post for this theme.

Thanks so much for continuing to give us a highlight for each week, Carmi

Juniper said...

In Dublin's Fair City...

Titanium said...

The lighting, the backdrop, the composition, the subject(s) in this shot... every facet is striking. It tells a fascinating story; the man wandering aimlessly had best be careful lest he be the next to lose his head to the 'shopping gods'.

Mine is here.

Jim said...

I had to step out of the woods for this one, Carmi. Take a look here.

T. Becque said...

This would have caught my eye too - nice one. And good tale to go with it!

Max said...

Just wanted to thank you all for what this wonderful series has become. I look forward to it every week, not just because I get to showcase my pictures, but because I love looking at all of yours too. Amazing work out there.

Cathy said...

One more Candid: http://nccathy1.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographic-124-candid_20.html

srp said...

I have always had this question.... if you have more than one posting for the theme each week, should we put it here or in the comments of one of your other thematic posts for the week...
This one is a universal scene that could be from many different countries.... and a situation mothers probably shudder at just a bit.

Carmi said...

SRP: Thanks for asking. I think it may be easier for visitors to keep everything under the same virtual roof if you leave a comment under the original TP entry.

While I do my best to support the theme every day, I don't always have a chance to do so through the week - life gets in the way, I guess. So in cases like that, it may be easier to just post a comment and link right back where it started.

Hope that clarifies...thanks!

Chibi Janine said...

Here is my contribution

The Gearheads said...

Sorry, apparently my link is broken, here is the link to my candid this week, and if that link doesn't work, here is the url.

http://the-gearheads.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photo-124.html

Sarah Walton said...

Love it - better with the ignorant stranger I think - makes one double-take, especially because he is at the left and leading the eye.

Here's my candid:
http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_rVy_JsUQDI4/TM50z5SR02I/AAAAAAAAJfs/epHc8Ynk108/s1600/portrait1.JPG

I live in Dubai, and am just becoming accustomed to seeing two straight men holding hands in public (it's illegal to be gay in the UAE), and I'm starting to think it's beautiful. Bring on manly love.

Greyscale Territory said...

Love the frozen silhouettes! For some reason I initially thought they were figures at an airport watching planes!

Here is mine for this week:
Candid Shopping

Ben said...

There's probably nothing I enjoy more than taking candid shots of people I don't know! Of course you can get a little nervous around people's kids, but usually I would sneak those when I am with my own kids alongside me. Fun theme Carmi!

I chose Example from Florida.

Mustang Sally said...

Wow ... this has been a popular theme. It's been a busy weekend but I finally got mine up ... it's a double feature, having the electric photos I took, but didn't get up last week. You can see them here

Vicki said...

Right now it is lay-off season for me. My goal for this time is to edit and clean out my picture files. Here are some that fit this theme. Enjoy!

http://vickijf.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photographiccandid-what-might.html

srp said...

I have some candid feet and candid heads (of a sort) to go with your candid bodies.. but decided on one final entry that is a bit more warm and emotional. And no leering birds in sight!

Aunt Snow said...

Carmi, this was more of a challenge than I thought!! I think I have one for you finally.

http://doves2day.blogspot.com

Karen Sather said...

I really feel the urge to send this too... take Two

Link: http://twincitiesblather.blogspot.com/2010/11/thematic-photgraphic-candid-124-take.html

Aunt Snow said...

Once I started looking for candid shots, I found them everywhere!!

Here's another:

http://doves2day.blogspot.com