Just a Passing Observation

Black and white BW B&W Hamilton Ontario Canada contemporary documentary photography


It was one of those strange reactionary occurrences in life.

This is the intersection of King and James. If you stand there long enough, something interesting; not necessarily pleasant, will happen.

At that instance something, instinct perhaps, triggered in my head saying, “Now, start shooting right now!” so I raised my camera and held down the shutter release, panning as the car was swerving through and picking the pedestrian up over the hood. As the viewfinder goes black while the shutter is open, I didn’t even really see in real time what was occurring, although I could somehow predict what was transpiring in order to keep the lens aimed at the action.

More like documentary photography than street photography, all of the shots turned out pretty dramatic and horrifying but this one really conveys the urgency and danger of the moment.

Parts of this shot that I’m really glad I captured were the debris trail, and the witness on the park bench at the right edge of the image craning his neck to see it all unfold before him. If you look at the shot enlarged, you can see his mouth is open and his eyes are wide in shock. That’s raw emotion.

The pedestrian had a bit of a limp afterward but seemed to be okay for the most part; really lucky. He didn’t really want to stick around to be checked out by paramedics but he did in the end. It took some coaxing from the police to get him to submit to being examined.

I gave my statement to the police, and sent them my pictures but I wasn’t required for any additional investigation measures or trial.

A Misty Moment

True Colours

A Misty Moment

Just a Passing Observation

Black and white BW B&W Hamilton Ontario Canada contemporary street photography

Tough Day at the Office

I came upon these two just as the officer was taking the perpetrator to the ground. The young man he had was of much slighter build but he gave up quite a lot of resistance. I felt really sorry for the police officer as I kept photographing for, easily, five minutes as the pair grappled with each other at the side of Main Street West. I couldn’t believe that backup hadn’t arrived in all that time. I absolutely feared the worst if the swift moving perpetrator had managed to get one of his hands free to seize the officer’s weapon. It’s a tough and scary job.

Eventually, an additional officer came along in his cruiser to assist the first cop, and get the perpetrator under control. Ease the danger.

I also had sympathy for the perpetrator. I’m told that the twenty-something had severe mental illness, limited help from the existing services, and regularly self-medicated with narcotics. He lived on the 5th floor of a nearby high-rise apartment building, and was well-known for making waves there. A few months after this altercation, the guy was found dead in his apartment. He hung himself.

All Day Long

Just a Passing Observation

Black and white BW B&W Hamilton Ontario Canada contemporary street photography

Dark Day

An early morning tragedy. A pedestrian is suddenly found down on the sidewalk by an alley near Barton Street East and Emerald Street North. It is not known why. It isn’t known if the casualty will survive or not.

There, standing in the alley is someone of interest. By chance, I think, he’s dressed in black and hooded, bearing some resemblance to the reaper.

What can be done? Is there still time?

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