Moving through the crowd at a BLM rally I spotted this young lady and asked if I could take her photo, she turned and directly engaged the camera by looking down the barrel, I pressed the shutter, thanked her and walked away. Something I now regret.
These regrets could have been avoided for a couple of reasons
Didn’t spend enough time with her to have her pose properly but its still worked out
Didn’t ask her name or email address so a print or digital file could be sent to her.
Realized that this is one of those photos you keep going back to over time.
I also learnt I need to slow down photographing protests, this is not easy as most are pretty fluid, filled withe emotion and can turn violent in the blink of an eye, however there is also a fear of not capturing the event in its entirety.
Until next time, happy shooting.
Please note: due to limited space on WP, a full-size version is available at Flickr which can be seen by clicking on the photo. Flickr presents the photo better
WARNING: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people should be aware that this blog post/website may contain images or names of people who have since passed away.
Australia day is celebrated on the 26th of January with a National public holiday, many Australians go to the beach, cook barbecues, play backyard cricket, watch fireworks and generally enjoy themselves, but there are also protests by Australia’s First Nations people who call the day ‘Invasion Day’ or ‘Survival Day’. These protests occur every Australia day, in every Australian Capital city and are growing in not only numbers, but also growing louder every year.
Trying to tell this story with words was not only difficult due to the amount of emotion and politics surrounding the day forcing me to procrastinate over what I had written. After several days I came to the conclusion that a story can be told through the power of a single photo, and there are thousands of powerful photos out there. One photo that immediately comes to mind is ‘Tank Man‘ (Jeff Widener, 1986) who attempted to stop tanks leaving Tiananmen Square by standing in their path. That single photo told a story to the world of a lone man standing up against something bigger than him and believing in it enough to risk his life. With that in mind, (and no more procrastinating) I’ll let the photos do the storytelling and leave the emotional and political charged comments to others.
A proud Indigenous woman stares down the barrel of a TV camera
I am interested to hear your thoughts on how you photograph difficult situations including those that may have emotions attached to them and how you overcame those challenges.
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