Photographer's Note

When I encounter a particularly interesting individual in a crowd I seek his permission to record his likeness with my camera. That was definitely the case when I shot "Rembrandt's Rabbi" at an airport in Warsaw.

In the photo above, my experience was entirely reversed. I was walking along O'Connor Street in downtown Dublin, trying to find a good angle to shoot the memorial known as the Millennium Spire, when these two characters sought me out. With a serious looking camera in my hand, I must have been pegged as a serious photographer. The man wearing the "Union Made" T-shirt grabbed his friend, and asked me with a heavy Eastern European accent, to shoot their photo. I happily complied, with just enough time to click off one shot before they disappeared into the crowd. The bearded stranger uttered nary a word, but raised his hand, two fingers wrapped in a soiled bandage, that left two other fingers to hold his cigarette.

The experience reminded me of the modus operandi of Leonardo. While creating the "Last Supper" for the Santa Maria delle Grazie in Milan, he behaved very much like a Hollywood casting director. He knew how the faces should look, and how his final product would look like. While strolling through the marketplace, he would spot an interesting face, a possible candidate for one of the disciples, and immediately set out after the man to produce a sketch. I wonder if any of his subjects could have imagined that they would be immortalized in Leonardo's masterpiece.

Finally, I posted a B&W version of this photo as a Workshop. I would be grateful for your assessment of the comparison.

snunney, GFSSD-1, jhm, worldcitizen, stego, Graal, aliabazari has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Bulent Atalay (batalay) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6774 W: 470 N: 12149] (41261)
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