We were coming to the end of the day in our very successful Melbourne Flickr Group Meet-up and we decided to head back towards Bourke St Mall for one final shoot-out before people headed home for the day. Everyone immediately spotted someone for their own photo series so I preceded further up the road to find my own – luckily for me Mavis was on her break and was happy to become Stranger #35 in my series.
Normally when looking for strangers in my project I normally go through a mini ‘checklist’ of sorts before approaching the subject. Generally I am looking for:
- People that stand out from the crowd in some way, whether that be through a particular event thats happening so I can tell that story or even something they may be wearing which is striking,
- I’m always thinking about the environment that we are currently in and what type of background I can shoot them against,
- Someone that will be interesting in a close-up headshot, not only as a full-body shot, because I have a certain style I’m trying to maintain throughout my series, and finally;
- Someone that doesn’t look to be in a hurry to get somewhere else 🙂
Luckily for me, Mavis said ‘yes’ when I asked, but as she was on her break from work I would have to be quick. Of course, little did she know but I was already well prepared. So as to the plan I had in my head, I positioned Mavis in an area partly covered from the direct sun and shot ‘wide-open’ to really blur out the busy crowd in the background. She was finding it hard not to smile but I was really happy with the facial expression I was able to capture – a subtle smirk 🙂
As I mentioned previously, Mavis was on her break from Alannah Hill when I caught her. She is originally from China and has now been in Melbourne for the last 3 years. She has also completed a Master of Accounting at La Trobe University but the only numbers she is crunching at the moment is on the cashier desks for Alannah Hill’s finest fashion items.
Mavis was a pleasure to photograph and seemed to really enjoy being apart of this project. It was great to see her excited about being chosen, and thats what makes this whole project even more enjoyable for me. So thank you Mavis for being apart for the series, it was pleasure meeting you and I hope you like this portrait.