Say Cheese

There is a really good reason you will rarely see photographs of people here. It’s because I consider myself generally lousy at portraiture.

In addition, when you aim your camera at a person, the dynamic instantly becomes much more complicated; more than one interest must be served. By that, I mean that the subject, in addition to the photographer, has a vested interest in the finished product. And I am simply not good enough at portraiture to engage confidently in that relationship.

A landscape or building or animal or insect (or any other nonhuman subject) could not care less about a visual representation of itself. I like that simplicity.

Nonetheless, I found myself raising my camera toward strangers in the Florida Keys, particularly in Key West. Maybe I was seduced by the free-spirited nature of the islands, the pervasive air of burlesque showmanship, the street performers, the tipsy tourists, the light-hearted contest for attention in which almost everyone is participating, either as exhibitionist or spectator.

It started as a sort of candid voyeuristic study with a long lens (Tamron 70-300mm VC) on Sombrero Beach and again on the Dry Tortugas, but, as twilight descended on Duval Street in Key West, I traded the telephoto for the nifty fifty (Canon 50mm 1.8).

My brief foray into portraiture is below.

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Mallory Square, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

Duval Street, Key West, Florida

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