This week, I am discussing (at least attempting to) something that I really enjoy about looking at a photograph. Especially when I take the time and linger on it, I end up discovering much more. I ask myself questions regarding the shot, the location, the individuals involved, the scene and circumstances.
This photo was taken at Pioneer Square downtown Portland, during a lovely afternoon. People were sitting, enjoying the warm weather, some were just walking by. A nice change after the Winter when it is deserted there.
I sat down and looked around, observing my surroundings. I noticed the gentleman with an impressive beard. He was just there, enjoying himself, or so it seemed. At times eyes closed, and other times looking around. He looked at peace. I took a few photos, but nothing too interesting. It was OK anyway, since I was, myself, enjoying the moment. I sat there for quite a while and thought the scene could potentially develop into something interesting. Or maybe it was just an intuition. A few people walked by, but nothing was really working well.
Until…I was again rewarded for being patient. Two gentlemen walked by and stopped to give me a pamphlet about some religious matter, they were friendly and I smiled and thanked them. They naturally proceeded and stopped in front of the bearded man.
At that point the scene became quite amusing. They were not sure whether he was sleeping or meditating, or just trying to ignore them. The man with the pamphlets took a step towards him and then backed up. He stood there and smiled, unsure of what to do next, his colleague puzzled about the awkward situation. That is the exact moment when I pressed the shutter. They then just left without ever communicating with the man.
I only took one frame of this humorous interaction between the different characters. I was quite happy with the result when I developed the roll of film shot that day. It worked! I was able to capture the moment that I had experienced.
Now it leads me back to what I mentioned initially. If you, the viewer, look at this photograph and spend a little time on it, what would you think, what story would you come up with? You know some of it now from my description, but does it match your thoughts or impressions?
This is what I find fascinating by looking at a photo a little bit longer and allowing ourselves to go beyond the initial impression, and trying to imagine the story. A story that can be so different, likely based on our personal story, background and experiences.
Thank you for visiting, I hope you enjoyed the moment. I did!