Readers’ wildlife photos

Today we’re featuring more people pictures because I like them (and remember, humans count as wildlife). These come from Joe Routon, and are “street photography.” Joe’s captions are indented.

This first one was taken in Philadelphia a few months ago. I had no idea how prophetic that sign would be.

This was in Times Square in New York City.

Here is a tour guide in Antwerp, Belgium.

When in Atlanta, I was at a fast food restaurant. This young lady at the counter took my order for burgers and then, seeing the large camera around my neck, asked if I was a photographer. I told her that I enjoy taking photos, and she asked if I would take a picture of her for her boyfriend. Never one to pass up a shot, I said sure. This is the photo I emailed to her after I returned home. She replied that her boyfriend was pleased.

Wandering through a small village in Europe I happened to see a couple emerging from city hall. The woman was holding a bouquet, so I presumed that they had just gotten married. One of my favorite things to photograph in Europe is brides, so I asked if I could take their picture. They graciously consented. After I returned home I sent them their “official” wedding photo.

Wedding customs, including photos, vary from country to country. I happened to look out my hotel window in Turkey and saw a couple of professional photographers having a photo session with a bride. I quickly grabbed my camera and went to investigate, hoping that there might be a photo I could take. When they stopped for a few minutes to take a break, I stepped in before the bride could move and asked the photographers and the bride if I could take a couple of pictures. They gave me permission, so I took this photo. I’ve never seen a similar bridal pose, but I assume it’s common in Turkey.

When in St. Petersburg, Russia, I photographed this wedding party that posed for me in front of the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood. It takes guts for a photographer, who’s a stranger who doesn’t speak Russian, to ask, using hand signals, a whole wedding party to pose, but my motto is “nothing ventured, nothing gained.”


  1. Ken Kukec
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    Boyfriend oughta be pleased; that’s a lovely portrait.

    Is there a story behind the story regarding the Ladies Liberty on Times Square, Joe?

    • Posted September 1, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      Agree on the portrait: Very nice. What focal length did you use for that? (And crop factor, if any?)

      I use a 45mm f/1.8 Olympus lens for most posed portraits (crop factor of 2, so it’s 90mm equivalent, my favorite FL for portraits, though 85mm and 105mm are nice too. When I was doing 35mm film, I used an 85mm f/2.0.).

      • Joe Routon
        Posted September 2, 2020 at 5:20 am | Permalink

        My focal length was 85mm, f2.8, 1/75. Camera was Nikon D610. It’s my preferred portrait lens.

        • Posted September 3, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

          Cool, thanks. When I was using 35mm film, my favorite was an 85mm f/2.0. 🙂

  2. Posted September 1, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Very nice shots Joe!

  3. Posted September 1, 2020 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    That first photo looks like it should be a Pulitzer Prize winning photo from Life Magazine or some similar publication. As you say, it’s so prophetic. Even the “One Way” sign above the intersection seems loaded with meaning.

  4. C.
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    I just read Bill Hayes’ new book, How We Live Now, which chronicled the first months of the pandemic in NYC, along with his street photography. Your work is much like his. Being a chronic anxiety sufferer, I cannot imagine having the guts to just ask people if you can photograph them like you and Hayes do but I’m glad there are people like you. The future will be glad there are people like you. Some day some kid will be perusing your pictures and saying “look at that! How crazy people dressed back then!” Or “wow, I saw one of those _____ in the museum!”
    Present ventures, future gains.

    Of course, we can already look back at these photos from the not-very-distant past, like the Statue(s) of Liberty and sweetest the man in the background with the “Free Hugs” sign and think “wow! Did people really do that back then?!”

  5. Posted September 1, 2020 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    That was a cool wedding dress photo. I thought it was a lily at first glance.

  6. rickflick
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Very nice shots. The opportunities come along in interesting ways.

  7. Posted September 1, 2020 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Terrific pictures! This expansion of R’WPs is working out well.
    That first picture is prize winning, I think.

  8. nay
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    Agree, Agree, Agree – fabulous pix! prize-winning pix! wedding pix! Hugs! (sigh)

  9. daniaq
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    Lovely pictures

  10. Marina
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    You really are talented. And the smiles
    you get from your subjects tell a lot about your kindness, I think

  11. John Conoboy
    Posted September 1, 2020 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Great photos. When I was in St. Petersburg we frequently saw brides in gowns and grooms in suits or tuxedos on the streets, usually with several other people also dressed for the wedding. Our guide said that this was common in the city. She also said that the divorce rate is very high and most of these marriages don’t last very long.

  12. Posted September 1, 2020 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.” Mark Twain.

    Had Twain a camera he might have added something about boldly photographing others is equally parlous for bigotry and prejudice. Love the first one.

  13. Posted September 1, 2020 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    Lovely and delightful! Thanks!

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