Wednesday, March 22, 2006

On The Street

Lately I've been going through my old negatives and contact sheets, still neatly filed in old 500 sheet 8x10 enlarging paper boxes. I've got them going all the way back to 1961 when I first got interested in photography. I just wish that I'd kept better notes about my subjects and the stories that they told.

I was living in Boston in 1965, and as I was walking downtown I ran across this man who was visiting from, I believe, Czechoslovakia. We got into a conversation for probably 15 or 20 minutes. We probably each smoked two or three cigarettes while we chatted. He had a thick accent but was really quite fluent in English. Those were still the days of "the cold war" and it was very unusual to run across a tourist from a commuist country. I forget the reason he gave me for being able to travel to the United States. I shot a few pictures as we chatted and I suggested a few places he might want to go see while he was in the Boston area. I never saw the man again.

Back then I had a grey Leica III-CK with a 35mm f/1.8 Canon lens, and rarely carried anything else with me beyond a spare roll or two of film. When I first developed the film this image popped off the contact sheet shouting "ME! Print ME!" Looking at the contact sheet now it's still the best picture on the roll. I've always liked it.


Blogger taffer said...

I can understand you have this picture among your favorites Al. It tells us from the subject, from the closest environment and your story as always compliments it perfectly.

7:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Todd looked rough then as well!

9:04 AM  

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