Samaritaine Scene (Age vs. Style in Paris)

by Crosley John

samaritaine scene age vs style in paris street portraits crosley seeking critique john

Gallery: Faces in Time

Tags: street-portraits crosley seeking critique

Category: Street

Published: Wednesday 29th of November 2006 02:19:10 PM


Jitka Unverdorben
nice picture, g. jitka

Karina Brys
Wat zeg je? You speak Dutch as well John :) You are right about the colours. They match allright. And yes, sometimes, an image I thought was not good due to lack of light appears to be very good. One should always wait until a photo is developed/uploaded.

John Crosley
Erwin Well, a little more Dutch, and also a bravo. Thank you. I feel about this one like late Supreme Court Potter Stewart did when he tried to describe pornography: "I can't define it, but I know it when I see it.' Apparently he saw enough of it. One of the delights as a judge was the regular pornographic 'screenings' in their basement porno theater where they could all harumph about what was being shown (except Justice Douglas who simply refused to attend saying it all was OK with him - except maybe child porn, exploitative porn with unwilling participants, etc.) Douglas prevailed. As to this photo, it's one of those photos that just seems to 'hang together'. I got one chance after a lot of would-be chances. I was lucky the woman turned as she did and lucky also the street lights complemented the color of the store window/skin/etc., or I'd have been out of luck, but that was pure felicitousness. But it's OK to have the ball bounce your way once in a while. So many times it does not, figuratively, and as a photographer one must discard what promised to be a 'great' capture that didn't 'hang together'. I am humbled by your praise, Erwin. Thank you. John (Crosley)

John Crosley
Karija Brys Well, I don't speak Dutch (exactly), but I have plenty of influence from some of the most droll, funny people on earth in me. Most people think the Dutch humorless, especially if the evaluator is trying to negotiate the price of something downward they are purchasing, but if one has lived as the Dutch have next to the bellicose Germans for all those centuries and were overrun twice in World Wars, you'd have developed a very wry national sense of humor to keep your sanity, especially if your little country had a history of once being the world's most rich and your people highly cultured and sophisticated. Dutch culture ranks high in my estimation (Dutch taxes do not, however.) (The Dutch humor is so wry/dry that it is often hard to tell a joke is being told -- something the 'serious' Germans did not understand and many 'jokes' were told at Germans' expenses I think during their occupations of Netherlands without the Germans being aware they were the butt of the jokes -- often being told right to their faces. As to photography, Yes, say I, always wait for the download/development -- surprises abound. And sometimes photos that I thought were wonderful, pinpoint sharp, turn out to have, say, sharpness problems, and simply have to be discarded -- causing me always great sadness. But this, fortunately, slow shutter speed and all, was not one of them. ;-)) John (Crosley)

John Crosley
Maarten Music to my eyes, to read your words. My job, through photos like this, is to communicate. Sometimes I miss, at least in the eyes of viewers, commentators, and raters. Apparently this one is agreed to be a better one. I knew it the moment I pressed the shutter. I don't always know. PNetter's sometimes have fallen in love with far lesser work or less accomplished work and rate such work very highly, and I often am astounded by that/other times some of my best work can hardly muster a 4/4 rating. I continue to be both amused and amazed (and educated) by this system. For all its faults, it does impart knowledge about popularity, if nothing else -- and I use it as my private polling organization for my photography -- for that it has great worth for me, as I do intend to try to publish. (yes, it's true, if anybody will have me) John (Crosley)

John Crosley
Thanks G. Gitka U. I appreciate the compliment. I just came across it, and waited the longest time until the older woman turned so I could get this photo, then rapidly moved on. I didn't try for another. In retrospect, I wonder if I should have . . . Life is like that, I guess. John (Crosley)

John Crosley
One unnoticed thing Both women are looking the same direction. I wonder if each sees the same thing in the same way? John (Crosley)

erwin bosman
John, the contrast between a poster or ad and a passenger is a rather classical subject, and it is very hard to find new approaches. What I like in yours is the proximity of it, the close contrast between the 'naughty' look of the fashionable, young lady and the meditating look of the elder woman. They are very well positioned in the shot which is very easy to read (and that is meant as a compliment). I understand that the lighting conditions were not perfect, but you did an extremely good job ! I also like the harmony in the colours ! I would say : bravo, very well done groetjes erwin

John Crosley
Karina Brys -- thanks for the compliment I like to see the word 'brilliant' next to my photos, in critiques it looks especially good. Not deserved particularly, but good. What carries this photo, maybe is the colors, as well as the composition. Shot under streetlights, the lights gave the old woman's face the cast needed to match the natural colors of the illustrated woman's coloring -- what do you think? It's just one more element to hold this photo together, and one of those things that one doesn't 'open one's eyes to, until the rates start coming in and one starts examining things carefully'. In fact, I was impressed overall about how the 'bad lighting' worked to good advantage in this photo. Sometimes one can turn a negative into a positive, even if just by chance. (There are so many photos ruined the same way, one ought to get the benefit of the doubt occasionally to have chance 'improve' a photo rather than ruin it.) To borrow a hackneyed radio commentator's phrase (one who's about worn out his welcome). 'What say you?' John (Crosley)

John Crosley
Rebecca C. It may just be the artwork and the old lady -- the artwork style, I mean, as it's considerably more 'old fashioned' modern than present-day work. In fact, this may have been 'modern' when she was modern -- in effect, this is her 'stuck in time' in the artwork and 'in the flesh' as she is now. It was an easy shot to 'see' but a hard shot to take, after dark, under streetlights, at the end of the day, with about 1/8 of a second at 180mm on a 200mm zoom lens, but vibration reduction, so I was able to be a steady holder. And, I had plenty of practice. She had stood, back to me, as I approached and took many shots of her, showing more of her body, but her face was turned away, revealing less profile and more of the back of her head -- nothing worth writing home about. Then, just for this shot, she turned. There is a reason they say that one finds the thing one is looking for 'last'. That is because there is no reason to keep looking for 'after one has found that thing one is looking for'. Any further looking would be 'completely illogical'. (as Spock might have said). So, although I took many prefatory shots, this is the one I 'found' as she turned, and although I was closer by that time, it was the 'keeper' anyway. It started out with a 'bad title' -- something about the Samaritaine store being old and etc., and I just changed the photo title, (not the request for critique) and immediately the rates went up . . . coincidence?) I've done better, but I shot all day and didn't come up with much, as much of what I saw was more touristy, and I shot it because some day it may have stock photo potential, but for no other reason, until I shot this one, then I was more satisfied it was a day well spent. Thanks for weighing in. (and don't tell the 'birds' about this old woman). Actually, this caption presently is misleading in suggesting she is 'out of style' -- she's pretty elaborately coiffed and dressed, just not modish, but then the store front figure is pretty out-of-date in dress also, just prettier (or younger perhaps) which these days has grown to become synonymous. Am I right? John (Crosley)

Karina Brys
Brilliant contrast :) I like the closeness of it.

Maarten van der Burgt
A very nice contrast and good composition. Maarten

Rebecca Ciborowski
This is great. I get an Alfred Hitchcock feel immediately. Really neat.

John Crosley
Samaritaine Scene -- (Samaritaine Department Store, Presently Shuttered) Paris's famous Samaritaine Department Store is presently shuttered, ostensibly for 'major renovations' but who knows? An artist has painted scenes and faces on various dispaly windows to keep the store looking 'lively'. Here, a woman, apparently caught in her own thoughts for a very long time, eventually turned to my camera and became part of a tableau. Your comments and critiques are invited and most welcome. If you rate harshly or very critically, please submit a helpful and construcive comment; please share your superior photographic knowledge to help improve my photography. Thanks! Enjoy! John

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