Being a lonely walker…

Being a lonely walker permits you to see clearly, quietly and very attentively, the world around you. For instance, I discovered I’m a people photographer and that I hate “bright sunny light” to take pictures. Yes…. ok… that is not such a great discovery but, anyway, although it’s something very simple, accepting it, it helps me to define and polish my own style as a photographer. It’s not just that I tend towards those styles, but why. That is what I discovered…

First of all: People. I love taking pictures of people but without them noticing. I don’t like to say “may you do this, or that” but let them feel comfortable on their context, on their skin, and then take a picture of how they show themselves. That is a real portrait. I don’t care if they look beautiful, if the scene is beautiful… actually I don’t care too much about the aesthetics (Oscar Wilde, don’t kill me!!) but the feelings and the sensations. The tension on a leg walking on the street rather than the perfect diagonal created by the leg with the pavement. The rough texture of that ground under your feet rather than the perfect composition of the squared (or “whatever shaped”) pavement. The relation(ship) between two strangers crossing on the street, looking (or not) at each other rather than the balance of two figures creating the “whole” of an image….

What interests me the most is not the mere image but the relationship of its components. That also helped me to feel and understand my own role as the subject or even object in the picture.

Secondly: Light. Any photographer will say that the worst hour to take pictures is midday, with those awful shadows, those unbearable contrasts… The truth is that having such a light as the late dawn/afternoon/evening light, makes one loathe any other moment of the day. The golden light touch. The soft caress on the skin. The delicate draws made by those shadows. The gradual light painting the picture, conquering each object, each corner… I feel that light almost like I could breathe “it” (if you could “breathe” something.) That light tells stories of all kinds. It tells secrets. It’s a low whisper on your ear. The breath of someone telling you a secret. It’s a delicate touch with your lips…

I feel really confident and calm walking at that hour. And taking pictures of people. And maybe talking to them.

And that I discovered being a lonely walker…

Emma Espejo

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