Stranger Portrait #4 – David
David was suspicious of my motives. It seems explaining that you take pictures of strangers to interact with new people and work on your photography skills is not seen as a normal motive for doing something like this. I soldiered on and (semi?) convinced him I was simply odd and not evil. While suspicious in the photo, he was smiling by the time I left (coincidence?).
I did position myself so that he had to turn towards the light some. So I was actually thinking more about the photography aspect of things this time. I’ll consider that progress.
This little girl was at a birthday party for some family friends. She alternated between closing her eyes and sticking out her tongue (in a non-annoying way that made me like her more) and that real smile. Her older sister was there too but she was old enough to pose. She smiled but it wasn’t real. She said she didn’t like her smile. That was a pretty depressing statement for an 8 year old to make. Already self-conscious. This picture was taken in the computer lab in the building where I teach night classes. Tien Shu (spelling? seemed rude/stalker-ish to ask) is a math major. She seemed fine with having the picture taken but there might have been a communication problem. I asked her a few small talk questions but all I got were smiles and nods . . not sure if it was a language issue, or just too much time in the computer lab. It was not as satisfying as a number of the other shots but I do like that she manages to smile with just the lines on her face. Her lips remain completely straight. It is interesting for me to look at this series all together. I wonder if the closeness of the photographs relates to my comfort level or that of the subject. […]
I don’t want to be the “creepy guy with the camera” that D’Arcy mentions in his #ds106 talk but I do want to be able to capture certain images and interact with other humans in a variety of ways. If I can make myself keep trying these I’m hoping, eventually, I will have the banter and people skills down well enough to do this without it being awkward for both parties. Taz was chosen in part because he didn’t look like he’d be worried about me- camera or no. He’s pretty much the exact opposite of the first portrait. I learned his name but nothing else about him. I did not need to tell him not to smile. This experience was different than the first stranger photo but not any better in most ways. You’ll also notice that the pictures is out of focus as well but we’ll cross that bridge when I can focus more on the photography and less on the human interaction portion of things. I will say that this would make an interesting project to do in a school. You’d have to prep students properly but it would be interesting.
I found Costic? AcsinteThe name “Acsinte” is also written on the page as “Axinte.” Neither translate to anything on Google Translate but the “axinte” version leads me to a LinkedIn profile with the job description “mechanical at Magic Systems SA.” It hints at interesting things but probably just in my head. which is a new Flickr Commons participant. It also has a Twitter account. I really like these photographs and the backstory is interesting as well. They almost seem to good to be true but I’d almost be more excited if they were. In any case, the images are awesome. A number of factors coalesced last night- these photographs, returning from taking too many present day photos for the VSTE conference, and some inspiration from Stephen Downes’ ‘Half an Hour’ site. I decided I’d spend 30 minutes each night making something. It’s not Daily Create (although it might be at times) and this isn’t a pledge to you in order to keep myself accountable. I tend to trend much more towards self-directed inspiration and react against most, if not all, outside pressures. With my self-analysis session out of the way, I decided last night to try to “repair” one of the photos from the Costic? Acsinte group. I say “repair” because I really love the artifacts of decay in the […]