No Guts, No Glory (#932)

I began street portraiture as a hobby because of my lack of guts. I am an introvert, and the last thing that I am prone to do is introduce myself to a stranger. The camera becomes a prop, a tool that helps me "break the ice". It is relatively easy to approach a stranger and ask for a favor, for help in pursuing my hobby of taking photos of strangers. For me, it has been trans-formative. After several years of this unusual hobby, I have "loosened up" considerably. The surrounding world looks more friendly.

Carl was sitting on a curb adjacent to a subway entrance in New York City. At first I walked by, but took a deep breath and turned around to meet him. Carl is a soft spoken Muslim from New Jersey. Fortunately he has experienced little anti-Muslim sentiment and is totally comfortable in the U.S.A.

I could have kept on walking by. No guts, no glory.