Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Stranger, a Touch and a Picture

How often do you touch a stranger? There have been scientific experiments done on monkeys and the importance of touching and bonding from infancy. Humans need touch and caring as well.  But out in the world, when do we touch a stanger? And when we do touch, not accidently, but intently, what is their

 reaction? Do they smile? Are they relaxed? Do they touch us back? Or do they pull away and show displeasure that you have invaded their personal space. We were out walking around, being touristy, (in Key West, Florida today it is chilly, it is way colder than normal  at 58 F, it's still sunny, and a hot box compared to other places in the world going through the big chill and deep freeze)  there were lots of people taking photos of one another. I almost always offer to take a photo of them together. It seems like the photogrpaher is never in any of the pictures, and no one seems to realize that fact until many years later. The reactions when I offer to take a picture are as varied as the people.Many shake their heads and say no thank and look away. Maybe they don't like taking photos of themselves, or don't want a picture with that person, for all sorts of reasons. Maybe they don't want to impose, or they only have limited frames left to take. Perhaps, they are apprehensive as to what kind of picture taker I am. Sometimes I think they don't want a complete stranger touching their camera, or them. But most ot the time, I get a smile and an enthusiastic yes, with them just giving the camera to me. Occassionaly, the camera is a bit complex, but usually it's just a point and shoot. One thing I do find interesting, is that sometimes the person who handed the camera over, still wants control of the process. A director if you will. They are posed, and even though everyone is now in the picture, often times they are more interested in getting the background than the people in it. I do ask permission, to take 2 photos, one of them with as much background as possible, and the other witrh a close up of all the faces of the people together. After all, a picture becomes priceless when people grow up, grow older, change or if that person has moved far away or is no longer with us. I hope I have clicked upon a precious memory on film for someone to save.

1 comment:

  1. What a big heart you have to reach out and touch a stranger the way you have done for me on one of my lower days. It means a lot and I'll never for get it. My every thanks.