My friends and acquaintances–not necessarily the same–wonder why I always wander around with a camera. I admit these days it’s often a small Panasonic GX7 , but sometimes I dig out the Nikon D4 with the 24-70mm f/2.8. Now that is a big, honking camera to haul around. When I’m honest with myself, I think I might have Bill Owen’s observation in mind. He said,
“When someone sees me with a camera that weighs almost ten pounds, he assumes immediately that I’m a serious photographer.”
I’m not a street photographer, however you define that genre, but I have noticed that there are often photographs out there ready to be taken if you look. You still need a camera, though, and I’m a snob. I don’t consider the imaging device in my smartphone to be a camera. Oh, it will do in a pinch, but it has no flexibility. (I was going to add a sexual reference here, but I decided to forego the analogy. That you can supply yourself.)
Don’t believe me? The rather oddly dressed gentlemen was shot from my truck while I was waiting for a traffic light to change. It was over ninety degrees that day, and I still have no idea why anyone would dress that way. Extreme photosensitivity? Fashion statement? The insanity of youth?
Driving to work offers a number of opportunities. Need to have your flooring redone because of ghost infestations? Apparently this company can help you out.
I’ve never been brave enough to call them.
Curiosity and humor are not the only motivations. There can be tragedy, too. Again, I was driving to work when this car shot out from a merging lane just in front of the car ahead of me, then slammed into the median. No, I don’t know the outcome, and I didn’t stop. I couldn’t have helped, there was no shoulder, and as you can see, there were plenty of folks already helping. There was a motorcycle cop a few hundred yards ahead, and I made sure to let him know.
But that didn’t stop me taking a photograph as I slowly drove by. I had a camera.