Tag Archives: street photography

Street Soccer


During my two weeks in India, I was able to take two afternoons to myself to walk the city and make photos. A short-term trip doesn’t allow much time for building relationships, learning stories and developing images that tell those stories in ways others can connect to. Throughout the whole trip, whenever I had an opportunity, I would be snapping pictures and grabbing street shots as we were traveling to various sites. These two afternoons allowed me to slow down a little bit, but not much. As I was walking down one alley to get back to a street I had spotted earlier in the day, I came across a group of boys playing soccer. Two bricks in the middle of the street marked their goals, and the ball they used was closer in size to a tennis ball than a regulation soccer ball. I started taking pictures, but after a minute or two, the boy who was clearly the leader of the group picked up the ball and came over to me. I was worried they were going to be upset, or that they would start asking questions I wouldn’t be able to answer adequately through our language barrier. Then he smiled at me, dropped the ball at my feet, and said “play.” He didn’t have to ask twice. I slung my camera onto my back and jumped into the game. My athletic abilities have never been anything to write home about, and this instance was no exception. I tried hard, but my clumsy feet struggled to hang on to the tiny ball. I got a few good shots in, thanks more to the generosity of my opponents than to my own footwork, but I couldn’t ever get past the quick feet of the goal keeper. He managed to block every shot I sent in from a distance and steal the ball from under my feet whenever I got too close, all the while throwing in sharp dance moves worthy of a Michael Jackson or Usher music video. We drew more than a few strange looks from passersby, and upset a handful of drivers making their way through the alley we were obstructing, but none of that really mattered in the midst of our excitement. It was a good game at the end of a good day.







Hip Shots

Last weekend Kristen and I found ourselves in downtown Raleigh on the first truly beautiful, warm Saturday of the year. We had a purpose to our visit, and it was not photography, but I couldn’t resist trying to get a few shots off. I have been longing to just take a day to myself and explore the city, gathering pictures of people as they go about their lives. I want to improve my portrait techniques, and I want to take more portraits of real people, doing real things, in an effort to better represent real life. Part of my problem is I don’t afford myself the time to go out to practice photography simply for photography’s sake. I bring a camera along when I’m out for another purpose and end up feeling awkward when I try to break away from that purpose to figure out how to set up a good shot. My other problem is I feel awkward taking pictures of strangers who just see the weird guy with the camera and must be wondering what he’s up to; but I love looking at the simple beauty in life, at the way people interact with one another, and sometimes that’s best appreciated as an outsider looking in. Some of these photos were cropped with a viewfinder, most were simple quick-shot street photography. My favorite ended up being a serendipitous hip shot taken outside of the Museum of North Carolina History. There are four people in the picture, a group of guys, maybe family, maybe friends, all sharing a quick meal. The camera only found one face though, and that face is what caught my attention right away. If the picture had been of the men laughing and finishing their hotdogs would you have even noticed the boy sandwiched between his guardians? I couldn’t have set it up any better.