I remembered that little ditty playing in mind…about the Teddy Bears Picnic that we used to sing aloud at school when I was a little kid.
And that ditty was still playing in my head, as I was walked around the DTE area of Vancouver recently, trying to look like a professional photographer, but failing miserably…when I came across this little guy in some bushes. It often surprises many people seeing me walking amongst thousands of so-called socially deprived people in this part of VanCity…..in all the time I’ve been taking shots there, not once have I had anything stolen from me, even though I often carry expensive Rolleiflex cameras with me. I tell a lie….there have been 2 cases where I have had a little bit of hassle there….the first was when I was shooting a building just off East Hastings Street and Main….an area well-known for it’s, shall we say, street ladies.
I had only just taken my shot and was walking away, when I heard a woman shouting something at me….I turned around and she was swearing and screaming at me for taking her photo….I assured her I was only interested in buildings that day, but she was adamant that I was out to shoot “whores”, and demanded the film…I’d only just loaded the film into my camera, so rather than create a scene, I just opened the camera up and gave her the film! That seemed to quiten her down and she walked away muttering…
The second time was when I was out on a shoot, again in the same area, when a guy across the road I was wanting to cross, suddenly began shouting out to me, “Hey! You gay or something? What’s that damn flower for?” Sometimes I get an urge to look different to everybody else, so I make rash decisions as to what I’m going to wear….it may be all denims (denim shirt, pants, jacket, cowboy boots)…or it may be dressing in all-black…or as this time, a colorful flower in my lapel. So anyway, I avoided that guy by walking along the street and taking another route!
Back to my shot of the toy doll…..it seems some child may have put it there, or maybe some passer-by could have placed it there, seeing it on the sidewalk….but it really caught my eye…a kind of a surreal thing to see, in the middle of a busy city.
And this second shot, again taken in the same area…..this is a classic example of seeing something, taking a photo of it, then realising that what you saw has not been captured by the camera!
It’s a classic thing isn’t it….what we see and what the camera sees are two very different things, alas. And no matter how hard we try, whether we use the most expensive film camera, or the most advanced digicam around, there will always be moments when we realise what we saw is not what we hold in the camera.
Just to fill you in on this last shot…..when my attention was drawn to it, the shadows just stuck out a mile, as if virtually asking me to photograph them…..the human-like shadow on the left was moving around gently, caused by a gentle breeze blowing, as if it was the shadow of a man or lady dancing to some unheard music. The whole scene, no bigger than a tiny 1″ by ” square, seemed so sharp and clear compared to the surroundings…..other-worldy even.
Of course, I took the shot, but looking at the result, that magic that originally drew me towards it, has gone….maybe you can imagine what I saw…?
all shots taken with an HTC cellphone