I consider ‘Susie’ one of my best efforts. She was a very reluctant subject.
While walking on a sidewalk three blocks from my home, the path was extremely crowded. A restaurant had outdoor seating, undercover. I saw ‘Susie’ eating with a friend and her hat really caught my eye. The area was too crowded, and I am very reluctant to approach someone at a restaurant, lest the owner feel that I am harassing customers. So I continued on.
Several minutes later, the two of them were walking my way, almost upon me. They were so close that I hurried ahead and reversed course, so that I could approach them head on. Always when I give up on a person, but later have a second chance, I feel obliged to ask for a portrait. Call it fate, Karma, or whatever, I have become rather metaphysical about this. Someday I’ll get ambitious and start a discussion string about this.
Anyway, when I explained 100 Strangers and asked to meet her, she crinkled her face and asked, “What???”. She looked like I was some kind of a deviant. Worse, she had walked half a step past me and looked back over her shoulder. I have found this body language to be the kiss of death. But I repeated the request. She looked at her friend, shrugged, and said “I guess so.” As a clicked, she said with a horrified look, “Are you going to give my name?” I said. “I don’t even know your name. You could lie to me.” Still she looked uncomfortable. I said, “I know, you’re name is Susie. Hello Susie!” This finally broke the ice and I got the shot. Susie’s friend seemed amused by the entire episode.