Friday, May 1, 2015

Expectation of a Miracle

Hairdressers in the sun, 1966 by Robert Doisneau

Yes, the expectation of a miracle. It’s very childish, but at the same time it’s almost like an act of faith. We find a backdrop and wait for the miracle. I remember a backdrop that never worked for me, possibly because I didn’t wait long enough, or didn’t return to it often enough. In the foreground you can see the steps of Saint Paul’s church, the background is a perfect faubourg, as you imagine them from literature or movies. I frame it in my viewfinder, from rue de Turenne to a shop called Le Gant d’Or, and wait there for an hour, sometimes two, thinking, “my God, something is bound to happen”. I imagine events I would like to photograph, one wilder than the other. But nothing happens, nothing. Or if it does – bang – it’s so different from what I expected that I miss it. The miracle did take place, but I wasted it, because I didn’t pay the right kind of attention. When you are tired, you become unable to react, your emotion is no longer available. - Robert Doisneau


Image source here