I've long admired Jim Darling. Not only for his amazing portraits, but also for his very approach to photography. Jim is known for actually talking to the strangers he photographs and building a connection with them. The result? Amazing, intimate images of strangers.
I have longed to approach street photography—my recent obsession of sorts—in this way. Sometimes I see a beautiful photograph to be taken, but I just don't feel comfortable sneaking the shot. So I've walked away thinking about the picture that could have been.
This past weekend in NYC, I saw a man sitting outside Starbucks, smoking a cigarette. And I thought, "This is it. I'm going to just do it and ask him."
And I did. He responded with merely a hand gesture indicating it would be fine and to step back and take the shot. After I took a few pictures, I introduced myself and he asked if I'd met his friends sitting on the bench nearby. So I shook each man's hand and asked if they would mind if I took a picture as well. I stood back as far as I could (without crawling on top of a street vendor's table or parked car) to get a shot of all four men.
So, I dedicate these shots to Jim Darling—an inspirational photographer and all-around person. *looks around for glass to raise*