After making purchases and portraits inside the Rail Yards Market, I stepped outside for air through the western wall’s side rear exit. I mentally noted that the area would be an interesting location for a future photo-session.
Unlike my previous experiences with the 100 Stranger project, I did site selection in advance, and only had to wait for the right person to materialize.A few people used the side alley although they appeared to be leaving the market in a hurry. Eventually a young family came walking in my direction. The mother had a camera without a strap. She put her eye to the viewfinder and instructed her daughter to hold hands with the dad to pose for a few photos. I observed her picture taking for a brief period, Then I decided to approach and ask if she would like to be photographed together with her family.
Immediately, the woman agreed. She handed over to me a full frame DSLR. I looked through and considered the exposure setting too bright for the scene. The control dial was in a spot different than on my own camera body. I asked the woman to show me where to locate the control wheel.
In a matter of seconds, the woman revealed where to find the camera dials. I carried on expediting the exposure adjustments and while doing so, asked if she were a professional photographer herself. She claimed to be, “just a nurse who takes pictures as a hobby.” I experienced my first case of camera envy right then and there.
Using her camera I made several shots that pleased me. I asked her to look and make sure she was happy with my results. While she scrolled through the pictures I asked the woman if she wouldn’t mind posing alone for me a moment longer, but this time with my own equipment. And would she agree to participate in my 100 Strangers project?
I explained the project. I offered sincere flattery at her lovely appearance. The woman agreed to participate: quite flattered. Her child and husband stepped to the side. I directed her to stand in the middle of the alleyway and face me. I aimed down the length of the buildings to make her portrait. This is Whitney, 55/100 of my strangers.