NEW CAMERA: Playing With Shadows

August 08, 2017
Last week I finally bought a "proper" camera. My lovely friend Sarah lent me her Sony a6000 so I could film some YouTube videos and I fell in love with the hybrid nature of it. It has an electronic viewfinder which I find really helps me to get lost in the photograph. When the lending period drew to a close, I couldn't bear to part with it, so I ended up getting one myself.  

I'm thrilled with how these first few photos have turned out. They're filled with lush greens and deep blue skies. When I saw the little tufts of fluffy white cloud from my window I just knew I needed to get outside and take some photographs. For a while now I have been walking casually around my neighbourhood, mostly en route to the supermarket, and have been itching to capture the scenery. It's amazing how most things present themselves as art when you open your eyes and create a frame in your mind. 

Sometimes I get so frustrated not having a camera on my person. Often I see something peculiar, a colourful flower on a chainlink fence, or a whispering shadow being cast on a building. Armed with no instrument I am helpless. I am forced to simply walk on by, averting my eyes. I suppose the sensible and patient thing to do would be to take note of where I felt inspired and at which time and hope that one day I can return and take a beautiful picture the way I envisioned it. 

Whilst I was out collecting images (the new Russell Brand Show podcast in my ears) a well-dressed man in his thirties called out after me. He must have hollered a few times, but he caught up and I removed an ear bud to give a moment of attention to him. He was wearing a Microsoft employee's lanyard. He was either on the way home from work or just wanting to seem official in some capacity. His white button down shirt implies the former. 

He then began a torrent of exasperated German, explaining (or mansplaining) that I could not take pictures of houses. It was an invasion of privacy. Do I have some ID? Why has he never seen me before? I explained in my broken German that I live on the corner and I'm just testing my new camera. I showed him my green provisional drivers license, which in hindsight he had no right to demand. He then switched to English which never fails to twinge at my patience. He continued stating that when I'm here I'm definitely not allowed to take photographs. 

I was mostly worried that he would make me delete the pictures, but I managed to get away with my booty in tact. I stormed off home - to the home I pointed at from where he had confronted me. I'm typing this almost 24 hours later and I am still exceedingly irate. 

Of course, the first thing I did upon returning to my apartment was Google the laws. Microsoft man was nothing but a brown-nosing busybody. I'm trying not to let him spoil the photos I have so far, or create apprehension about going out to take new pictures. 

I hope you enjoy these photos and the short story that precedes them. What I wrote feels oddly poetic so I will be recording myself reading it. But that is a job for another day as my sore throat is preventing me from doing so. 

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