Victor Dallons  

Small Business Survival by Victor Dallons

June 2020 - Small Business Survival

About the Image(s)

Small business, independent shops, are trying to survive through the pandemic closures. I am working on a series to document how some businesses that can’t allow customers to enter are trying to maintain some commerce by meeting customers at their doorstep to deliver their goods. I try to capture some interaction between the store operator and customers. I wonder if I accomplished that.

There are a few things I wish were a little different in this image, but I would have to re-shoot to change them. But that is the nature of street photography, the scenes don’t repeat themselves. One can only hang out in the area hoping for something better.

I would appreciate your thoughts.

Nikon D7200, 105mm (157 mm FFeq), f/5.6, 1/400 sec. 450 ISO.

This round’s discussion is now closed!
6 comments posted

Ed Tepper   Ed Tepper
Victor, I think this is excellent storytelling and B&W rendering.

When I first looked at it I saw the man wearing a hoodie with his left hand clinched behind his back and his right hand reaching from the side with something in it and I immediately thought the worst. Then I became relieved to see the phone in his right hand. The scene still looks confrontational to me. The women's face has a worried look to it. That emotional roller coaster is what makes this photo so powerful in my mind.

If I could recreate the scene I'd like to see what the shop was selling. The skin care salon is a little out of place in this story but that doesn't diminish the power of it in my mind. I wouldn't change the composition or cropping from what you have given the POV you had.

To draw the viewer's eye more directly to the subjects I might suggest: 1- adding just a very small amount of brightness to the woman's face, and 2- add a vignette around the man and woman by (a) adding a little brightness to the overall scene and then (b) using the graduated radial filter to add an oval shaped vignette around the man and woman, gradually darkening the background back. I think that might provide some separation of the subjects from the background and allow the viewer's eye to be directed to the subjects.

I'm not sure if this is correct but from a legal standpoint you might want to consider blurring out the license plate. Check on that before you post this publicly. I'd be interested to know what you find out.

Super, super street photo.   Posted: 06/05/2020 22:17:52
Victor Dallons   Victor Dallons
Thanks for your comments Ed. I tried your suggestions for darkening the perimeter of the image, especially some of the bright door frames, and then brightening the subjects. That brought better attention to the subjects.

As far as I know, there is no law about photographing licence plates or any other subject when they are in a public place in this country. Bluring it out would be more of a courtesy for someone who does not want to be photographed. The only restrictions that I am aware of is that I can not use the images for commercial uses without getting model releases from people or for images of private property.   Posted: 06/09/2020 20:20:16

Beverly Caine   Beverly Caine
This is an excellent street photo. I really don't see anywhere that I could suggest to improve this image as it tells the story that is intended. I'm not an attorney but I can't believe that there would be a legal issue on publishing a car parked on the street with a visible license plate. That would be another interesting issue for discussion.   Posted: 06/09/2020 06:37:52
Victor Dallons   Victor Dallons
Thank you Beverly.

I replied to the comment about licence plates in my comments to Ed above. It is good to keep in mind what the limitations and restrictions to photographing other people and property are, including legal, ethical, and courtesy considerations.
  Posted: 06/09/2020 20:40:59

Karen Johnson-Nieuwendijk   Karen Johnson-Nieuwendijk
I like the story this photo tells. It has so many questions for me-Is the man asking for directions?, is he buying something for his wife/girlfriend?, why is he holding his phone?, and why is he holding his left hand behind his back?. So hard to read expressions with masks. This photo makes you think about the possibilities of why he is at this shop. No suggestions to make it better.   Posted: 06/11/2020 15:07:55

Bill Foy   Bill Foy
I like Street Photography that poses as many, or more, questions than it answers from the viewer. Personally, I think the man's hands are positioned to keep them away from the woman and any germs she might be spreading. I wonder if he has a full face shield? This image is a very good story of how people are being forced to interact during the Covid-19 pandemic.   Posted: 06/13/2020 17:02:38