I am finding more and more, that the ability to approach and speak to people is an art of fleeting moments. I have also discovered that most people do not have the ability to, in a relaxed manner, talk to complete strangers. I have been shooting off and on at the Overland Park Farmer’s Market for a year and a half. Most of the vendors I know. I know their produce. I know them. I have come to this by the conversations we have had, and the “gift of gab.”
I have talked to numerous photographers about this. We, in general, feel comfortable behind the camera. We don’t have to put anything out there for the world. We get to see moments of life and time, capture them, and then share them. I would offer this. Your photography will mean more to you if you invest something of yourself into it.
I walked up to a mom that I have talked to so many times before, and asked about making photographs of her and her family. This is what you can get when you make a stranger into a friend by investing yourself.
Beyond this, there is something about feeling comfortable in your own images and ability. Zarda Bar-B-Q (http://zarda.com) followed me on Twitter the other day(@ZardaBBQ). First, I responded by saying thank you to them for the follow. Second, I warned them I may show up with my camera. I was advised they would welcome me anytime. I took them up on that. I walked in, told the manager who I was, what I was doing, and that I wanted to see something nice. Out came a great sandwich and some Kansas City Burnt Ends! Now understand, the sandwich was not staged by the kitchen... I did that. They were concerned that it would taste great, and trust me it did.
These were shot in the main dining area of the Lenexa, Kansas restaurant. No portable studio. This was one flash, off camera with a hand-held shot. I would not have had the freedom to do this had I not been able to talk to the manager and explain what I was doing. Take the step folks, and ask. Put yourself out there and see what happens. They say “No.” Ok. Move on. Ask again... and invest in your photography.