Can I make a photo of you?

November 3, 2011
November 3, 2011 Matt

Can I make a photo of you?

Man with grandson

As a professional photographer. Wait, I hate that term “professional photographer” It’s a terrible thing to say. That term seems really derogatory to photographers who do not earn money through their art. The fact I earn money from my photography does not make me a better photographer than those who don’t. A brief browse of Flickr and I’m usually astounded by Bill the bankers weekend trip to Bognor’s landscapes.

I always try to carry a camera with me. One of my old tutors used to say “Never be without  a camera, you never know when the Aliens might land” He also used to say, when people asked which camera is the best, “The one you have in your hand all the time” In fact one of the best photos I have ever seen, was taken with a $50 camera. (I’m searching)

As a young photography student in NY, I wanted to be the next Cartier-Bresson or Robert Capa (yes of Magnum, we all need to dream BIG) Of course when you grow up things become more clear. Anyway, street photography was what I always loved. Walking with a camera and hunting the shot with the X or WOW factor. “The Hero” shot is a term many of the magazines I now shoot for use
Anyway, what I want to show in this blog, is the photos that I have made without a commission or any financial gain. However they are often the most rewarding images I make. I always ask permission. Whether it’s in a language I hardly know or just showing the camera and a thumbs up or down and the permission given is just a nod.

Family and friends gather round a house one week after the 2010 earthquake

Old man in Lolol

Bunch of kids on a football field

Men working

Tourists in a thermal pool

Men resting under a eucalyptus tree

young woman in vineyard

Men chatting in the street

Salt marsh worker

Old couple collecting firewood

Two young boys in front of church destroyed by earthquake

Man on a bench

Fisherman with fish and friend

street worker sitting in a wheel barrow

Young girl with kitten































































































































































































































The one thing ALL these photographs have in common is that none were directed. I pointed the camera and the subjects did whatever they wanted to.

I hope you enjoy the images. Please remember, they are all © Copyrighted. Any  use must be pre agreed with Matt Wilson

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British photographer, living in Chile. Working mainly in the drink industry. Just finished work on third book of wine photos and planning next project

Comments (6)

  1. The “Man on a Bench” is a really striking image, I like that one the most.

    And I am with you — I usually ask permission too. I know it’s kind of a controversial subject amongst photojournalists, but I feel like it’s disrespectful not to. I think sometimes photojournalists dehumanize the subjects they’re shooting and just got in with a long lens and take a portrait of their subject caught unawares. But how would the photojournalist feel if someone did that to him? I know I would not be particularly happy with a stranger pointing a camera at me without asking and then putting my photo on their website. It’s just a respect thing.

  2. Matt

    Hi Kyle,
    I think unless it’s a serious news event and permission is an impossibility, it should always be asked for and given. I used to carry a polaroid camera with me and give the subjects a polaroid as payment.

  3. The firewood photo is excellent…I love his look of victory, and hers so demure.
    The polaroid is a great idea…you may have to look at a portable digital printer now.

  4. Matt tus fotografias son hermosas la expresividad de los rostros de la gente de mi paìs es maravillosa gracias por darmi questo regalo!!
    Un abrazo

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