Updated: May 8, 2021
May 1, 2021
I met Mr. Cool several years ago at the Starbucks just below Chevy Chase Circle, DC. I had been running errands, but I had my camera bag with me. I decided to stop for an Americano and blueberry scone, which I’m known to sample all over the country. I should write a guide. I noticed Mr. Cool sitting by himself outside enjoying his coffee and he immediately struck me as a fascinating guy with his brocade vest, shades, hat, jeans, and cane. I almost passed him by to enter the shop, but I was struck with a real urgency to take a candid portrait. Still, I hesitated for a moment on the steps to the front door, feeling a bit shy about asking if I could take his picture, but I knew I would regret it if I didn’t. So, I backed away from the entrance and went to an empty table next to him. With my back to him, I took my camera out of the bag, made sure of the lens I wanted, and reached for one of my business cards. Then I turned around, offered my card, explained that I was a photographer, and told him that I thought he was such an interesting guy! I asked if I could take his picture, and he smiled and said, “Of course!” He was immediately at ease and I took just a few pictures, happy for the opportunity. I sat down with him and we started to chat. I learned that he was from Lebanon and that he lives in the area, but still went home at least once a year. Shortly, we were joined by two young men who obviously knew him from the neighborhood and we introduced ourselves and chatted away. Before too long, I got my coffee and made my goodbyes, smiling at the serendipity of the moment when a whole new world opens in a just a brief conversation. I love to take candid portraits of people from all around the world that show enough sense of place that you get to know them in a bit of their surroundings. I am also glad to use Fujifilm cameras, which, with most lenses, are not so imposing as to make people uneasy. Enjoy the current portrait gallery and the new ones that I add in the future!
Image Information: August 3, 2017 Fuji XT2 18-135mm lens at 29mm, f11, 1/20 sec., ISO 200