Serendipity Walking | Granada, Nicaragua

November 15, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

A young man walks past a shop in Granada, Nicaragua.Whalen-120828-5031-2 This eight shot composite image is the result of one of those occasions when you look at a situation and say "Wow... if only...?".  On the day that this photograph was taken, I was being guided on a photo tour by an amazing Managua, Nicaragua based photographer, William Shevchuk.  Five minutes before we saw this young man walking up the street, we were standing next to the green wall below.  William said, "Wouldn't it be great if someone walked by wearing a green shirt right now?"

Daily life in Granada, Nicaragua.Whalen-120828-4998 I responded with a pessimistic, "Yes, but, what are the chances?  We could stand here all day waiting for that."  We then walked two blocks, turned left, had a quick chat with a jewelry maker and continued down the street.  We turned to cross that street and I saw the local below out of the corner of my eye.  It took a few seconds to register that he was wearing a pink shirt and yellow shorts and walking directly toward a pink and yellow wall.   It took another second for the vision of this composite to pop into my head and I must admit that I was a second too late when I finally started shooting.  I stopped in the middle of the street and clicked away, but he was already crossing the doorway.  

A young man walks past a door way in Granada, Nicaragua.Whalen-120828-5034

Luckily, William has more courage than I do when it comes to asking strangers for permission to take their photograph.  William asked the young man to stop and walk past the door again which allowed me to get all the images needed to complete the composite above.

The takeaways from this experience for me are:

1.  When it comes to street photography, and possibly life in general, the question should not be "What are the chances that what I want will present itself to me if I simply stand here and wait long enough?"  The question that we should ask ourselves is "What might present itself if I keep moving forward, stay focused and keep my eyes open?"

2.  It does not hurt to ask, in fact, great things can happen when we ask.  Personally though, this fact does not make it any easier.  I know that there are plenty of photographers out there, like William, that do not have any inhibitions about asking someone for permission to take their photograph.  I also know that there are a lot of us out there that are not comfortable with it at all.  Photographers, please share your thoughts on this in the comments.  

Finally, here are a couple of additional images taken shortly after the images above.  We were on a roll when it came to the people photos at this point!  The first image; a purple shirt in front of a purple wall?! The serendipity continued... 

A young man sits out front of a cafe in Granada, Nicaragua.Whalen-120828-5057 A expatriate from Florida sits in front of a cafe in Granada, Nicaragua.

A man sits in front of a cafe in Granada, Nicaragua.Whalen-120828-5056

If you have an feedback on these photographs, positive or negative, or would like to hear how I took the images, please leave a comment.  Thank you for reading!


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