I always enjoy going for walks with my camera and capturing moments, that is something that will never change, that is where I find my peace. Being a people person, I also enjoy meeting "strangers" and sharing small talk. Since the arrival of my daughter, small talk usually revolves around "small" people.
While walking around on my lunch break I ran into this lady and her little girl on the dock. After exchanging a few words about kids, I asked if I could take their photo to give them something to remember their day by. This is something I have done for people in the past and will continue to do so in the future. It is not a planned photo shoot, rather a spontaneous photo taken at random places. I have gotten "cool" street shots of people in the past without exchanging a single word and while I love those photos I often questioned the meaning of them since the person in the photo never gets to see them, and other than it being a cool photo, it holds little meaning to me. While I am sure that I will continue to do street photography from time to time, I prefer to have a short conversation with the "stranger" and give them my card so that they may download the photo from a folder which I make for them. I do not ask for payment, nor even photo credit, some photographers will frown at this, however like I said, I am a people person and I enjoy giving them a frozen moment of what belongs to them anyway, after all, they shared with me as well.
I have a unknown number of ideas that involve photography, many of which I will more than likely never find the time for. One idea that has been floating around in my head for about five years now, is called " I Met A Stranger Once". This is something that happens to all of us almost every day of our lives. Some "strangers" are people that we never meet or talk to again, others however become important people in our lives. My best friends were all strangers at one point or another in time, so were yours. "I Met A Stranger Once" is not about finding new friends, or making new contacts, for the most part I am pretty sure that I will never really talk to them again. "I Met A Stranger Once" is a way for me to give back as well as to learn not only about others, but to learn about myself as well.
Although I have shared many stories and photos with strangers in the past, this photo marks the official beginning of a photo journey that has no time limit, no deadline, no expectations and no demands. I do not see this as a project, rather as an extension of two things I already love....photography and people. I already know that my life will be blessed with many conversations with people I have yet to meet. I hope that I am able to give them as much as they give me and who knows, while doing so I might just capture a photo or two that will be cherished for generations to come. If I can do that, then I am truly blessed and that thought alone puts a smile on my face.
So here it is, my first I Met A Stranger Once photo. This photo was taken at one of my favourite places on a cold November day in 2014 Erin and her daughter Hadley were out braving the cold and enjoying a mother and daughter day. We spoke about kids and my fear of having my own little one walk along that dock. My girl is however a lot younger and a lot more clumsy than Erin's daughter.