July 22, 2012

100 Strangers Project

I'm usually sheepish about walking up to strangers and asking them permission to click their photo. I've always chosen to use my 70-300mm tele lens instead to shoot strangers of interest :-D

But it's time for change. It's time to learn.

When I was in Kathmandu few months back, I went against my gut feeling and started talking to people - strangers, more precisely! It was a little hard in the beginning but after you get the hang of it, it's kinda fun :-] I started walking up to people and would ask them politely if I could take a of picture of them. 99% would agree with a smile. But there's that 1% who would shy away or would rudely disapprove. But it was all worth the try. At the end I talked to many people, clicked a lot of photos (portraits in particular). And one of the best thing about the experience was that every photo had a story.

So, now I am starting a new project called 100 strangers. I am going to photograph strangers and write stories about the experience. The goal is is pretty simple - make a collection of 100 photographs of strangers, and the stories.


About the photo:

I spotted this lady while she was walking around Swayambhu temple in Kathmandu with her friend. She was pretty cute so I thought of going and asking her for permission to take a photo. Frankly, I was a little nervous because I had never done this before - had always used a zoom lens to click shots of pretty girls ;-] So, anyways, following is the conversion with her:

me: "Hi, can I take a photo of you?"
she: (a little unsure) "Uh, hi, uhh"
she: "You can take a photo, but I'm not sure why you would want to"

She then poses with a nice smile and I don't say anything and start clicking. After few shots:

me: "Thanks, what's you name?"
she: "My name's [uh, I forgot her name!!]"

Then she smiled nervously and walked away (rather in a hurry).
And this is the part where I started thinking if she thought I was stalking her :-]

But it didn't matter. My quest was complete. I reviewed the photos and started looking for the next interesting subject - next stranger!

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