Stranger Portrait #29

Mike Ingroll - working construction near VCU - #29

It’s been a long time, almost exactly a year, since I did any stranger portraits. It remains a difficult thing for me to do which is a large part of why I do it.

Additionally, driving into work this morning I saw the scene below. The park is a place where many homeless people seem to gather/sleep/live. I went back to check on the man but by the time I was able to park and walk back police and ambulance personnel were on the scene. It’s the kind of thing that makes me wonder about my own perceptions of my environment. If it weren’t for the bike would I have gone back to check? It seemed to add an element of action interrupted rather than someone passing out or sleeping in the open. Lots of questions about internal and external elements.

3 thoughts on “Stranger Portrait #29

  1. Your ambiguity on helping is well noted. Years ago (a lot of years ago) I was visiting a bookshop in a rougher neighborhood, and saw a man sprawled out on the curb in front of a row of apartments. Momentarily, I was concerned, then undecided, then just went about my business. After shopping, I saw that he was being helped up by another man, likely a neighbor or friend. I felt bad that I didn’t help, but also that ambiguity of not knowing why he was there, or his condition, and concern with my own safety (and convenience), all combined to give me a memorable experience. I hope I am more willing to act in similar circumstances in the future.

    Sorry, no picture. —Bill

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