One nice thing about traveling is meeting new people… whether it’s climbing the ruins of Angkor Wat, loaning your phone to stranded tourist at the airport, or just standing in the rain on a dark bridge trying to capture the sunset, no trip goes without meeting a few new people.
Many of the encounters start the same… “Can you take my picture?”. There’s something universal about being handed a camera by a complete stranger. No matter the language, the communication is universal and usually the same. I get handed a camera… they point at the shutter release button and smile. No translation necessary. If they do speak English, it often starts with “You look like you really take nice pictures” or something to that effect. I guess that’s the impression people get when you’re hauling around a ton of stuff.
The trouble is, I take crappy tourist portraits. Part of the problem is, I just don’t know how to work their cameras. Sure you would think point & shoot is just that… point & shoot. But much of the time it’s late at night and they want to stand in front of the sunset or a backlit scene. Sometimes the flash fires drowning out the background, sometimes the focus locks on the horizon, not to mention all the different ways the lens zoom is configured.
Getting a quick course on how their camera operates offers little in improved results. If they do know how to setup their camera for a rear curtain flash or even just turn on the flash… communicating with hands & feet is not as easy as pointing at the shutter release and smiling.
I have started this page for those whom I have taken such bad photos of… after two or three attempts with their camera; I normally just fire a few shots with my own rig. Not to say this always makes a difference either, as most of the time I’m setup without a flash, or have my settings configured for a 20-30sec long, manual shot of the scene. But at least this way, I can (hopefully) re-configure quick enough to take a shot.
Some took a pose… but many where just a smile, gaze, or gesture towards the lens. In this gallery, very few are edited… most are low quality JPEGs from the camera. In many cases the color is way off.. but they all caught my eye.
Regardless of the quality, I’ve enjoyed meeting you all…
Categories & Keywords
Category:Lifestyle and Recreation
Keywords:Can you take my picture?, New Friends, People I meet, Point & Shoot, Street, Tourist