Wednesday, September 16, 2009

an outsider in the inside

© Joselito Briones

as i'm sure you know by now, i'm back. and what time to be here, this place is just full of happenings. on international scale there's the u.s. open (isn't del potro just so cute?), on a more local level there's broadway-on-broadway, and of course there's fashion week in bryant park.

i was difficult to miss the massive tents in the park when i came out of the 7 subway station so i checked it out. at the entrance was a crowd of fashion fans and wannabe's and photographers. i climbed and stood on a podium on the side, but i didn't even bother taking out my own camera as there didn't seem to be anything interesting happening. what did catch my eye was an old man in a blue jacket who was just taking pictures in the perimeter of the crowd, generally ignored. i watched him for a while and saw how smoothly he navigated the crowd, his quick scan of everything around him, taking pictures of what seemed to be nothing in particular (he was in general looking below eye level, so it was obvious he was not interested in taking photos of faces). when i saw him load and reload his camera with an old-fashioned film roll, i took out my camera, took photos of him (circled, above) climbed down the podium, and followed him :)

© Joselito Briones

it was just amazing how fast he looked at things, decisively taking pictures of the few things that interested him, but quickly dismissing everything else. it was clear that the man has been doing this forever. i pictured myself doing the same when i get older :) there's this man who clearly could be someplace comfortable taking it easy and yet his passion brought him here.

© Joselito Briones

the more i followed him tho, it became clear that "becoming like him" is something one can only dream of. the man went up the stairs, was greeted and waved through by the event guards, and entered the tents. without showing an i.d., or badge, or an invitation that was required of everybody else. when he came out it was with people who seemed to be v.i.p.'s of the event (points to you if you can identify whom he's being chummy with in the photo above).

having taken numerous photos of him, i asked one of the guards who he is, and was told that he's a new york times photographer who regularly does a fashion feature. when i got back to jane's here in jackson heights the first thing i did was google him.



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