Photography by J.D. Magers

The Kelby Submitted Photo

Added on by J.D. Magers.

On Monday I showed everyone an image from the recent Scott Kelby Worldwide Photowalk.  I really had a hard time choosing which of my photos I thought was best.  The other couple of times I had participated, I only was able to get one or two images that I liked, and when I saw the others that were submitted, I would quickly lose confidence.  Now though, I have a couple of more years of experience.  I was pleasantly surprised with how many photos I took that I liked.  I also came to realize that street photography is fun, and asking people for permission to take their photograph is not as hard as it seems.  The worst that can happen is they say no.  You just have to project confidence and be friendly.  I even want to photograph complete strangers again.  It's not scary at all.  

As I said, choosing which photo to submit was difficult.  To be honest, I'm not even done processing all the images that I liked.  I think I have 2-3 more.  One of the photos that I gave pretty strong consideration to submitting is the one below.

The Cigar

This dude and his buddy were standing outside on the sidewalk.  Both of them were smoking these whopping huge cigars.  When I first saw the hat on this guy, I knew I wanted to get a portrait.  I didn't want to just take any old sneaky shot though, I kinda wanted to act like a real photographer.  I had successfully asked a couple of women earlier in the evening if I could take their picture, so with my new found confidence I walked up to the two guys and broke the ice with a straight simple you guys look awesome.  We talked for a moment about why there were so many photographers downtown, and then asked if I could take their picture.  They said sure right away, and asked if I wanted them to pose or anything.  I told them I just wanted them to continue having their conversation and puffing on the cigars.  I took about ten frames total of the two guys, the last of which was my profile portrait of the guy in the white hat.

Later on in the evening, standing on a corner near the world famous Comedy Works, I saw this guy just standing on the sidewalk staring into his phone and lighting a cigarette.  Since I was on the other side of the street, I walked to a point where I could photograph him head on.  I got lucky when the woman walked into my frame from behind.  When I look at this picture, my eye goes from him, to her and back again.  I think there is a lot of visual interest in this photo.  My processing for this photo was a kind of a cinnamon matte look.  I feel like there is a sort of nostalgia to this frame, and I intentionally processed it to be kind of an old school look.

Where am I?

Ultimately though, the image that I submitted to the contest is this one down here.  This young couple was sitting at the bar of a restaurant whose windows were open to the sidewalk.  The place was empty except for these two.  I love that he has his body turned to her, giving his date his undivided attention.  They're relaxed, which is how a date should be.  I also like the brightness of the background, with all those bottles back there.  I think that holds a little bit of interest too.  Does this place stock the cheap stuff, or are they high end?  It makes me wonder.  

(I did just think of a couple of other images I could have made from this scene if I had thought about them.  What if I had waited a couple of more minutes and watched them interact?  What if he made her laugh right after I left?  That would have been awesome.  The other idea is to zoom in on all those liquor bottles, and try to isolate them.  They are so well lit that it would probably be a really cool image.  Mental notes for next time I guess.)

The Date

Anyway, that's the photo that was submitted.  I like how simple it is.  I have no idea if I won or not, but like I said on Monday, it doesn't matter.  I would love to hear what you think of them as well.  How do you like my processing?  Please tell me in the comments section of this post.  I greatly appreciate it, and will respond to any comment that is left.  Now I am off to process some more photos.  Thank you for reading today.  More later...