Thursday, September 27, 2007
Fear of strangers
"Handout man / L Magazine," Tim Connor, All rights reserved
I have taken lots of pictures of people in public without their permission (here for example), but for some time now this has felt uncomfortable. My solution has been to limit my improv public portraits to events like the Mermaid Parade, where people expect, even crave, attention, or to friends & family.
The above picture is part of a self-assignment to develop the nerve (& the fluency) to photograph strangers after 1st asking permission. I'm photographing handout men/women because 1) they interest me 2) I can tell them I'm an artist taking pictures of people handing out stuff on the street & it seems to satisfy them. I use the little Panasonic Lumix I carry around all the time because it's so amateur-looking. So far I've only done 5 or 6 people --maybe 4 quick snaps each. All the subjects have been very nice to me. Only one guy turned me down, & he offered to take his handout back.
Here are a few others I've done:
Handout man /Modern dental
Handout man / Emma's Dilemma
Handout man / NY Metro
It's crazy to be so self-conscious. I thought I'd put it out there...