This week’s challenge was another of our photographer spotlights. This time we’re looking at Vivian Maier. Chelsea says,
Though not known nor appreciated in her time, Vivian Maier is now regarded as one of the greats. In her free time she walked the streets and captured every day life as she saw it.
This week, take a week out of Maier’s book and hit the streets. Now of course not everyone has access to big cities, but that’s not what this prompt is about. Instead you should be showing every day life where you are. All too often I hear from other photographers “where I live is just not interesting,” to which I say, “well, to someone it is.”
Vivian’s story is really fascinating — she was completely unknown until she died, and a suitcase full of her photos was auctioned off. She never published a single print while she was alive. Now, she’s famous.
It raises all kinds of questions for me: in addition to the normal questions of “Why didn’t she ever publish anything?” and “How did she get so good?” and “What was her life like?”, there’s also the question of “Would she really want to be famous? Are we doing her a disservice by treating her legacy this way?” I don’t know. It’s weird. But anyways, like most everyone else I find her fascinating enough that I bought the book about her (though I haven’t finished going through it yet).
As far as the actual photography assignment, street photography is simultaneously really fun and really terrifying for me. I hate standing out and being obtrusive, but I really love the spontaneity of it. There’s this feeling of “anything can happen” combined with “what if they see me watching???” But I went out this morning and got a number of photos that I really liked — it was fun to try to do some street photography “where I live” instead of “far away”, and it reminded me that I should push myself in this area a bit more. I think the following was the most “Maier-esque” shot that I took:
I have a few others from this week that I’ll try to post at some point, but I haven’t finished going through them all yet. As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts!