Children playing on the swings
Since I came back from Shanghai, almost a year ago, I haven’t taken any picture of people. I’ve photographed buildings, bridges, streets, monuments, rivers… I’ve also done some night photography, dabbled with long exposure and light trails. However, I’ve never taken the time, nor found the courage, to take my camera and do what I enjoy the most in photography: portraits, and street photography.
First, I must confess I wanted to take pictures that would please most people. Even though I consider this blog as a hobby, it’s always thrilling to realise that some articles and some pictures turn out to be quite successful, and therefore, I try to write articles and take pictures I guess people will enjoy. The counterpart is that it makes me take pictures that are not as creative, or as satisfying to me, as I wish they were.
Second, street photography is not as easy in France as it can be in Asia. French people are not that open about being photographed in the streets. Therefore, it’s a lot harder to come back with some nice portraits, for instance.
This is really a pity, because I’ve always thought photography was not about showing beauties that everyone can recognise on his own. Photography is about showing the subtle and sometimes hidden beauties we generally are too busy to notice. There are so many interesting scenes, so many beautiful people on which we don’t take the time to lay our eyes on. Photography is about unraveling what is so obvious, but none sees. Have you ever been amazed, while you were walking in the streets, by the deep wrinkles furrowing across an old person’s face ? Most of the time, people will even find this ugly. Well, on a photography, it’s not the case: wrinkles are not the scars of age, they are the majesty of years and the stories they contain. Have you ever stopped in a park and observed all those people enjoying themselves, laughing, loving, or even sometimes suffering alone on a bench ? When I do some street photography, I do, and I find them beautiful. Landscapes and monuments can be amazing, and even sometimes breathtaking, but people, moments, and in the end, life, are always the source of infinite fascination, and I think photography should only try to help this fascination come out.
Somehow, I guess I can say: “La photographie est un humanisme.”
Two young lovers on a bench
A “Pétanque” player in Jardin du Luxembourg