Luck


In this article Barry Talis and Edas Wong show us the role of LUCK on the street

I remember the first thing you told me is that you and I are very different photographers. How would you define our differences and similarities?

-BT

The first impressions after looking at your photos are:

1. Each photo gives very large range and extreme strong expressions

2. Technique of using flash is so incredible

Both of them normally cannot be found in my photos and so I said our photos are so different :-). I don’t want my target subjects to know they were being shot; therefore, I don’t use flash and in most of photos, they were in “faceless”…..! So, up to now, I am still a fool on using flash 🙁

On the other hand, I think both of us have similarity: connectivity. You link various intertwined expressions to form a shocking photo. For me, I link the relationships between different subjects to form a surreal photo.

-EW

Untitled by Edas Wong
Untitled by Edas Wong

One of the things you told me about your photos is that they are “luck only”. I can really sympathize with this feeling of having almost no control of the situation. However your photos are far from being only lucky, so How do you gain Control of the situation? DO you observe and wait? are you looking for certain things?

-BT

All of my photos were obtained from LUCK. It is a fact :-). My shooting style is actually very simple and also there is no standard rule. I always keep walking (wander) to seek for “luck” and shooting. I believe 99% theory, i.e. 1 out of 100 will be a good photo. Therefore, the more shooting, the higher opportunity of having good photos. Moreover, sometimes (but not often), in case I find an interesting scene/background, I “might” stay there and wait for opportunity; oppositely, I “might” trace an interesting subject to look for relative background. Furthermore, I also like boundless imagination/dreaming during observation ,-).

-EW

Untitled by Edas Wong
Untitled by Edas Wong

Lots of street photographers say that “they have to shoot, if they don’t shoot they become sick” can you relate to that? why do you think you shoot?

-BT

No, NOT ME. I can stop shooting but cannot stop imagining/dreaming. In the first half of 2014, I completely stopped shooting because I left my camera in Stockholm and came back Hong Kong to take care my wife. During that tough period, although I didn’t produce any photo, I still imagined to outline some interesting images.

-EW

Untitled by Edas Wong
Untitled by Edas Wong

For me, street photography is not only shooting. It also Editing your work snf sharing it. What is your favorite/un-favorite part?

-BT

Personally, I prefer going out to street than spending time on editing. My experience is a good photo normally doesn’t need big editing…, even no cropping. So, I only spend little time to change the color not to be so “digital”. However, sometimes, even the photos had been posted to flickr, I might edit and then repost them again, if I changed my mind…..

-EW

Untitled by Edas Wong
Untitled by Edas Wong

As a good artist/photographer, own character is very important. Your photos always provide amazing extreme expressions. What factors cultivate you to have such unique character, education, culture, etc.?

-EW

I like listening to people and I am drawn to interesting and natural expressions. Some say that you are looking for characters that represent you, for me its sympathizing with someone with a clear expression. So if I can sympathize with him, he is me in some way. But usually one face isn’t realy enough, it has to come with a suitable background and good contrasting characters that can spark my imagination for a story So for one face to work, it has to be very close to let me observe the inner world of the character.

-BT

Untitled by Barry Talis
Untitled by Barry Talis

In your flickr photostream, all of them are street photography. Have you thought to change to other types of photography? What are they?

-EW

I discovered street photography by mistake , while trying to shoot visual materials for documentary films. I do want to try other types sometimes but the street genre is so vast (and therapeutic). I feel that I cant get enough of it.

-BT

Untitled by Barry Talis
Untitled by Barry Talis

I really admire who can approach targeted objects so close and shoot them with flashing. If I did like this Hong Kong, I would get a pair panda eyes by being hitted. Had you encountered any difficult situation after flashing someone?

-EW

Every street photographer has gotten in trouble and I also gotten a few panda eyes. Im always trying to be careful but when I see an interesting opportunity I usually go for it and deal with the consequences later. It can actually be easier to shoot people from close distance, because its so unusual they think you are shooting something else in the background. The flash is a different story, it limits me to only 1 natural shot before people notice me and the moment is over.

-BT

Untitled by Barry Talis
Untitled by Barry Talis

Let talk about our theme – luck. Could you show us some examples (with links) which you got them with full of lucks and unforgettable memories?

-EW

All street photos have an element of luck, but these 2 are truly happy accidents for me. This one is pure luck.

-BT

Untitled by Barry Talis
Untitled by Barry Talis

Favourite street photos from UPSP

 

Barry Selection-1

Eye doctor’s appointment by Violet Kashi

“This wonderful cinematic photo from Violet Kashi, still leaves me speechless. Its one minute before 12 o’clock, the old lady is eager, the Secretary is annoyed. So many stories that can be told, and the wonderful Characters are positioned perfectly in the surreal perspective. Tim Burton would be proud.”

Barry

 

 

Edas Selection-1

Untitled by Andreas Katsakos

“This wonderful photo from Andreas Katsakos makes me tears down. It triggers me to remember my passed away mother and how painful I was in 2014. There are so many touching stories/messages behind the photo. Did she look at her young photo to reminisce youth? Or, did she memorize the lost family member?”

Edas

Thank you Edas & Barry

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