So I was with my buddy Dave taking some photos (me) and video (him) around the park here in San Francisco. There was this event where they had random pianos scattered around the park, and anybody can go and play.
Anyway, after hanging around the park, we decided to grab a beer in a closeby place that we go sometimes when we are in that area. It is a cool place to sit, grab a cold one, and listen some live music. We got a small table right next to the “stage”. Music was good. In situations like that, if I go to take any photo, I tend to focus in the people that is watching more than the musicians. Weird, I know. But I found that sometimes you can get a little pearl here and there, little things nobody notice because everybody is enjoying the show.
This time I was not seeing anything in the public and also I had my Ricoh GR. 28mm is not the best to grab details across the bar. So I pointed my camera towards the musicians. I grabbed couple frames with this or that composition. Nothing striking … to me. So after a few minutes Dave asked me to see the photos I was taking. I don’t know if he was being a fan of my photos or just a good friend, but he saw some of the photos and he told me that if I didn’t show them to the singer he was going to do it for me anyway. Maybe I’m too harsh on my own photography, but if I really don’t see something that I really like I tend to keep it for myself (unless I need something to post here, LOL).
Well, the singer I took the photo of came by and Dave called her attention. So there was no way I could get away from showing the photos to her. I showed her one, the one I think was looking best. I was not particularly excited, eventho I really like her whole look, and so I told her. To me was just an average photo I stole while she was performing. Now here is where everything changes.
She saw the photo and she told me she liked it a lot. Compliment I thought. I couldn’t be more wrong. She is a cancer survivor. She used to have long and blonde hair. That was the first time she was on stage without the wigg. She decided to fight all these internal complexes we all have, grab a pair, and show the world her real self. Performing on a stage! I told her that I will send her the photo if she wanted, and she got really excited because she didn’t have any photo of her with her new look.
Lesson learned. Don’t hide. Share your work with the people you photograph. Something as simple and sometimes meaningless for us, like snapping a picture while having a beer, can make someone very happy. And knowing that my photography can bring happiness to someone is the best reward I could have.
Vaya con Dios!