Spotlight Seven is now on it's 38th installment, and this week's exhibit features CiaoChessa (Monica Shulman). Monica is a lawyer-turned-photographer residing in New York City, and maintains both a website and a blog. We were lucky to have the 6 Million People's top contributor, Denmark resident Itzick.
In addition to her outstanding portraits, Monica also creates wonderful seascapes and landscapes. Almost never without a camera for fear of missing that one great moment, Monica shares some of her experience shooting in New York City and around the world in this excerpt:
6) Looking in your stream I can see that you took pictures in different parts of the world. Are people on the street reacting differently in different countries? Can you give us some examples?
I find that there are two kinds of people: those who LOVE to have their photo taken and those who do not.
In New York you never know what you're going to get but I'm obviously always careful and respectful of people. I prefer candid shots but if the person notices me and puts their hand up or looks away or shakes their head, then I put my camera down. Many years ago, when I was still shooting primarily film, I saw this elderly woman on the street on 5th Avenue in NY. She was wearing the most colorful outfit that I've ever seen and her eyes were all made up with black eyeliner. I took her photo and she started screaming at me in the middle of 5th Avenue. I realized that she might be mentally ill and my photo was not meant to be disrespectful in any way but I wasn't about to explain this to her and it's not like I could delete the image from my camera...I just thought she was so...interesting and unique. She was small and old but she chased me across the street and I ran into the Disney Store of all places. She didn't follow me in. Years later when I look at that print I miss shooting film and I still laugh to myself about how I ran away from a woman on 5th Avenue. That's an extreme example but people in New York either don't care about you and your camera or they chase you down. I found that the same goes for cities in Europe and South America.
The only place I've traveled where I felt like it was exclusively one way - that people seemed to be indifferent about having their photo taken and that some of them actually embrace it - is in Southeast Asia. I was in Thailand and Cambodia and my experience was that the people were so relaxed and did not mind having their photo taken at all. But, basically, I think it's a person by person basis...
There's much more in the interview, so be sure to give it a read and enjoy all 10 of the photos selected for this week's exhibit. If you have any comments or questions or plaudits, please add your comments in the interview thread. Ciao!