Photographing People: Picturing Portraits

I’m a keen amateur photographer, but really struggle with the reality of taking everyday pictures of people. I love the idea of taking up-front and honest environmental portraits of people in their own domain, or just capturing off-the-cuff candid shots of strangers while out and about. But sadly to be successful that really requires a level of personal interaction I feel truly uncomfortable with, so historically it’s not something I’ve ever done.

I’d love to have the faith to just go for it with a kind of spontaneous confidence that over-rides my natural hesitation and reserve. If only I didn’t feel so uncomfortable about making contact with people I’d like to photograph, feel so afraid if rejection and of failing, there are so many informal portraits I could take, capture a real snapshot of that person at that moment in time…

Of course, living in London necessarily there are often multiple people visibly present in my images, but usually taken en masse from a distance, like a crowd on the river cruiser or in the tube, or fewer individuals closer up but taken from behind so they are unaware of my presence, like in the above images from Borough Market. I’m always sadly disappointed in the results though, as my attempts at capturing people going about their daily lives are inevitably half-hearted and lack-lustre.

But yesterday I decided to be brave and take a chance on not being rudely rejected, so I finally approached a friendly, chatty stall-holder and asked with a smile to take his picture, and here is the result!

Ok, so it’s only one simple portrait of one person I’ve never met before, but for me it’s a bit of a breakthrough. Even if only temporarily, I overcame my fear, my caution, my overwhelming reticence, and I finally did it! 🙂

Weekly Prompt: People

Fandango’s Provocative Question

Hearts on a Brick Wall

I found these lovingly created colourful hearts painted onto the full height of a supporting brick wall under a dark railway bridge at Borough Market in London – they just brighten up an otherwise dead and boring space, brought a huge smile to my face and seemed to privide the perfect backdrop for taking selfies 🙂

Weekly Smile

Is the End of May the End of May?

Is the end of May the end of May?

The headline on yesterday’s Evening Standard (free London newspaper) reported that Theresa May’s last chance (fourth) attempt at getting her ill-fated Brexit deal voted through Parliament may be off altogether. According to this morning’s news, if she refuses to give up on her clearly unsupported deal there may now be a second no-confidence vote in her leadership of the Conservative party in the offing to prevent her vote from taking place… And to add insult to injury for Mrs May, Leader of the House Andrea Leadsom has now resigned from the Government, saying she cannot bring to the House a paper she cannot agree with… It all feels a bit deja vu, the demise of Maggie Thatcher’s Prime Ministerial reign all over again… Which leads to my one-liner question, is the end of May the end of May?

One Liner Wednesday

Peace Roses in a Car Park

These peace roses were blooming on a large bush bordering a car park – you can see the parking space lines in the background. I couldn’t help wondering if they were planted there to minimise road rage later in the day when parking spaces are minimal… 🙂

Pics were taken for today’s Flower of the Day with my smartphone camera early in the morning, so look a bit dull and sadly don’t really do justice to the delicate beauty of the pale yellow pink tinged petals, but oh, they gave a beautiful show 🙂


I’m trying to think of an alternative example of ‘disingenuous’ that doesn’t involve mentioning Donald Trump, but his big arrogant bully-boy face with its big ignorant alpha-male mouth just keeps on pushing its weaselly way into my thoughts – ok, ok, I get it, Trump it is – so, which example to use? How do I choose just one of so many?

Hmmm… Not too long ago Trump was all over the merits of Julian Assange, considering him (and Wikileaks) to be the best thing since sliced bread (I’m paraphrasing here, of course). So much so that Trump triumphantly tells an entire rally full of people how great the guy is. Fast forward a year or so (or whatever) and the tables have turned politically, and suddenly Trump magically has no idea who Julian Assange is, or Wikileaks. Amazing!

That, in my world, is Trump being truly disingenuous – he clearly knows full well who Assange is and what Wikileaks is when it suits him, but as he thinks it benefits him right now to pretend NOT to know, he prevaricates obfuscates lies through his teeth about the extent of that prior knowledge… And we all believe him, of course – not! (Liar, liar, pants on fire…!) 🙂