So I have got an obsession. A healthy one though, or at least that’s what I think: I like photographing Jewish people. I mean, I do it all the time, even one-handed when biking on Kent Avenue and not really knowing I have a car behind me ready to run me over.
As a matter of fact, I do it not because of work, but because it speaks to my heart. I do it because in those people I see my little self at 14 reading Jewish novels on my parents bedrooms. I take photos of Orthodox Jews because they are not the me of today, but they were part of my childhood dreams of the past. When I see them coming home from synagogue in the streets around Williamsburg, my heart just jumps up in my chest and iphone or else I have with me at that moment, I have to try capturing what they are doing. Those few little gestures bring me back to the pages of “The Chosen One” from Chaim Potok.
This shot is not entirely what I was hoping for:There are no women in the picture, plus many adverted consequences played against me. I was in fact managing to pedal as close as possible to my subject without him seeing me, then holding my bike between my legs, and pulling out my iphone from my back-pack pocket in a 007-semless way to try being as quiet as possible but yet indadvertedly almost falling on my face twice doing so. This photo it’s really all I could possibly swing.
Oh, well…what’s important is that I had a blast taking this shot and I manage to still keep both phone and bike intact. Now, if only the subject matter had a long, brown wig, some kids around her and maybe a husband dressed in the Saturday morning suite, then I would have had the perfect shot, but then again…photojournalism is about getting what you see to be interesting at a spare moment just like this one that happened to me today. So here I plead guilty for wanting something a little different from what was indeed just placed upon my eyes just perfectly the way it was.
I guess what was really interesting is that the boy stood there for something like two whole minutes, looking at the painting on the wall trying to figure out what it meant and then simply walked away untouched. When he turned around, it was a bit too late to pull out my other camera. He saw me and the whole hide-and-seek game was over. He almost got scared, turned around, looked at the graffiti once more and walked away from me wordlessly.
I think I may randomly find myself at quarter past 12 every Saturday afternoon at that same corner from now on!