“Everything is easier once you’ve already started; it’s just that getting started is the hardest part…”
This was definitely true in regards to starting this project. I’d been following a few photographers works on Flickr for a while who were doing the 100 Strangers project and I must admit that the thought of approaching someone I had never met and asking them for a photo did seem extremely daunting.
It was midday and I was watching a street performer on Santa Monicas busy 3rd St Promenade when I first spotted Kara. She was working at a stall in the street but didn’t seem too busy, so I approached her and said
“Hi, my name is David, and I was wondering if I could take your photo for a photography project I’m working on”.
Although these were probably many more words than I needed to say, it seemed to come off very calmly naturally and she said “sure, what do i need to do?”. From there it seemed relatively easy… well as easy as taking a photo could be when your hands are shaking madly and your trying to get a sharp image :p
On the inside everything was going a hundred miles and hour through my brain, the composition, the focus, the pose, my heart-rate… but on the outside everything was calm. I took a few close-up shots and a 3/4 shot to show her tattoos before she asked if she could see them. To my relief, she said ‘Oh thats cool!’ and from that moment this project didn’t seem so daunting at all. Kara’s willingness to first let me take her portrait, and then actually respond in a positive way after seeing the images gave me just the confidence I needed to continue with this project.
After the shots we chatted for a quick moment about whether Australian’s and New Zealander’s had the same accent, a little about what I had in mind for this project in the future, why I was currently in L.A. and what she was studying at college (which was Audio Production/Engineering if I’m not mistaken), before I passed on my mini moo card and was on my way.
So a big thank you to Kara for being the first stranger of the series, and I hope you enjoy looking at these shots once more. Lets see where this project goes from here.