People are my favourite photography subjects. There are so many interesting and beautiful human beings in the world and I can’t tell you the number of times I see someone on the street and think, “I would LOVE to take their picture.”
And so I begin this new project – The 100 Strangers Project. I take pictures of people all the time for my work, but I really want to step outside my comfort zone and ask strangers if I can take their picture. This is a challenge for me because I can be a bit shy sometimes and I get nervous that I will make people feel uncomfortable, or maybe I will feel awkward if someone says no. But I want to conquer this fear!
Today I ventured to the weekend craft market in Lagoa, which is the adorable neighbourhood I lived in during my first trip to Brazil in 2008. Located in the centre of the Florianópolis, it is the place to find crafts, culture, tourism, night life, and good food. There is always something happening there, and I love the energy of the place.
I went there with my American friend Kaila, who speaks both English and Portuguese perfectly. She was a big help to me when I was about to chicken out. I photographed four people – I meant to do more, but I got hungry, and then it got dark, so I’ll have to go back another time! It was really fun talking to the vendors about their crafts. Creative people are usually very interesting!
Ready to meet my strangers?🙂
This is Rosario, from Argentina, who travels, surfs and makes jewellery. She spoke basic English so it was easy for me to explain my project and request a photo. She agreed but told me I could only take ONE picture, so I had to make it count. I love her dreads.
This is Carolina, from Paraguay, dressed all in turquoise. She spoke English well and was a lovely, lively lady. She hugged us and thanked us for our energy as we left.
The second I saw Renan I knew I wanted to photograph him – his afro was calling to me. I was super nervous to do it, because we hadn’t spent any time talking to him at his stall, but Kaila did the talking, and he happily agreed. I’m so glad she was there to give me that extra push!
Lastly, Peter – I had met him before, and he is such a kind man. He remembered that I had little kids and asked me how things were going. He didn’t speak any English so I said my whole shpiel in Portuguese, and it worked! I felt pretty proud of myself.
I really enjoyed this experience and can’t wait to do it again. I learn something new with every picture I take and I am positive this project will turn me into a better portrait photographer.
Check out my new blog page with all of my “strangers” (who aren’t really strangers any more!). Let’s see if I can get to 100!!
As always I used my Nikon d300s camera with 50mm 1.4 lens at a 2.8 aperture for each photo.
Questions? Comment below or contact me.