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the following project.

14 Sep 2010

Back in the summer of 2008, when I started to shoot film again, I embarked on a mini-project that involved, simply, following people for about the length of a short city block, and deciding whether or not to take a photograph of them from behind.  The criteria was more functional than anything: there couldn’t be a lot of people on said block (otherwise I’d probably run into them with my camera pressed up against my face and me not paying attention to anything other than the subject at hand), and the subject matter couldn’t be walking at such a fast clip that I wouldn’t be able to follow and use my manual focus (walking and manually focusing simultaneously is not easy, people).  I sort of gave up on trying to be inconspicuous.

So midtown (slow tourists) and the less-crowded parts of Chinatown (slower, older shufflers) proved to be the most ideal locales, with an occasional shot or two in Brooklyn (moseying dog walkers).  You start noticing all these little differences between people: the length of their stride; how some folks are also gazers, looking at everything around them, while others are purposeful, sidewalk-focused walkers; how they carry their shopping bags; and so on.  In such a pedestrian-centric town, it was sort of nice to take note of the actual pedestrian-ing.

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