Lure Of The Crowd

©2013 Dave Ortiz

©2013 Dave Ortiz

I just got back from a lunch hour photo session at Times Square. You have to squeeze in time for photography everyday. Lunch hour, on my way home or to work, errands, anytime can be a good time for taking out your camera and snapping away. As you may already know the inspiration for the Times Square series is Daido Moriyama and specifically his  book,Shinjuku, published by Nazraeli Press. I remember learning from some documentary on Daido Moriyama that he can’t photograph in empty spaces. He says he needs crowds and the hustle and bustle. Well, after shooting for a small bit of time on this project I am beginning to understand where he is coming from. There is so much going on in places like Times Square and Shinjuku that you can practically just lift your camera and point it haphazardly and you would get an interesting picture. Almost, but not quite. It took me a few days to acclimate to the point where I could take out my camera and shoot. Then it took me a little while to be able to process all the activity to the point where I could pick out where I wanted to point my camera.

The art of photography is that of subtraction. You have to take away things in order to heighten the composition or the emotion present in your 2 dimensional creation. At first I wanted to just concentrate on intimate urban landscapes or scenics and while I have been able to do that, I can’t help but be attracted to the people and little gestures or postures.

My strategy is thus to shoot whatever attracts me and try to do it without thinking. I don’t want to edit in my mind while photographing. I want to think just enough so that I don’t include the right things.


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