Project 365 – 3rd Aug 2010

Posted: August 3, 2010 in Project 365
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Day 184 – Holiday Snap

Today’s picture is quite a regular sight for anyone who regularly passes Circular Quay, or any other tourist monument for that matter. It’s funny because I’ve taken plenty of similar photos in front of similar structures in various countries, yet something about this sight at Circular Quay makes me think, in a kind of way, that they will probably miss the point and potential experience of travelling to another country.

What is it to take a picture of yourself or companions in front of a tourist attraction? Is it to send home proof that one reached the sight? Or to have a memory of your trip? Or to connect, in some strange way with the place or structure? To me the Opera House is a magnificent piece of architecture, one that represents Australia in a lot of ways, but I bet that a lot of tourists spend more time visiting places like the Opera House, Town Hall, Mrs Macquaries’s Chair, etc.. than they do interacting with Australians. Why do they need things that represent a place when you can actually experience the place from the point of view of locals just by talking to them?!

I think it’s probably one of the good things about photojournalism and documentary photography. You tend to have to talk to random people, whether to get a photo or ask them questions or just chat. The more you do it the easier it becomes and you end up with pictures full of personality and a better representation of a place than a static structure.

Having said that I’m a little obsessed with taking pictures of people taking pictures, especially in front of tourist attractions and the less relevant the attraction the better! Or maybe I just like it for the weird looks I get from the tourists when they see me taking a picture of them!

Quote of the day: Strangers are friends you have yet to meet


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