Jenny is Owen’s (Stranger #38) wife. They were walking along The Mall together, on their way to the Science Museum to see a photographic exhibition. Owen asked me to guess Jenny’s occupation. From her dress, it suggested she was in a chic profession so I said something to do with fashion? Not quite – she works in the theatre making hats for costumes. Both Jenny and Owen were lovely to talk to, thanks for spending the time.
Marie was my second stranger of the day, enjoying a stroll along The Mall with her two sons and husband. I managed to have a quick chat and photograph the whole family in just a few minutes. She was visiting her son Rory (Stranger #33) who now lives in London from Ireland. They were making the most of their trip, despite the weather. Thanks for agreeing to have your portrait taken, Marie.
I met Tracy today on the end of the pier at Shoeburyness. She was with her husband and son who were trying out a new telescope her son had been given for Christmas, spying on the boats chugging past! Her red scarf and hat, along with matching lipsick, immediately caught my attention. We chatted for a while about the telescope and her life. The family have recently returned to the UK from Queensland, Australia after spending 4 years there. They came back so that her son could have treatment for a serious medical condition. He is now on the road to recovery and looking forward to using the telescope to watch the stars as well as the boats. They are hoping to join a local astronomy club. Thank you Tracy for taking the time to chat, it was great to meet you.
This evening I went to an event associated with Culture Code, where developers who can build things were encouraged to mix with folks from local museums and the cultural sector to find out what sort of data and information is available to be used. I didn’t speak to Liz until quite late in the evening, but she stood out because she was holding a stuffed pigeon. She is from the Woodhorn Museum & Northumberland Archives. Amongst their collection is a lot of pigeon-racing memorabilia, including that of Iron Man, a remarkable pigeon who won the Pigeon Olympics. The bird certainly provided a talking point! Unfortunately, the lighting was either very dim or very harsh, so I wasn’t able to get as good a picture as I would have liked, but I wanted to include Liz (and Iron Man) in my Strangers gallery as they had such an interesting story.
I enjoyed the outing to Portobello Market on a photoshoot with the London Flickr Meetups group today. Shayna was one of the other people who came along – I had not met her before but we enjoyed chatting from time to time during our walkabout. She is an American, hailing from New York, who moved to London 25 years ago to run a shop in Portobello Road. She is now an Attitude Adjuster. What a fantastic job description! Thanks for your company Shayna, it was great to meet you.
Today I went to Portobello Market on a photoshoot with the London Flickr Meetups group. I met Michelle in the market, selling delicious home-made cupcakes at her stall. She is a professionally-trained chef, but since becoming a mum she has been running her own business, Minklez catering. She has had a stall in the market for about three years and loves the vibrancy of meeting people there. I bought one of her baby cupcakes – which was delicious! Thanks for taking the time to chat, Michelle – I wish I could bake half as well as you!
It’s been ages since I last took any stranger photos – my previous was Patrick back in August. I’ve been thinking I needed to get back into the swing of things, so when I was out with friends today shooting some street photography, I vowed to progress the project again. The event we were at was celebrating the switching on of the Christmas Lights in Chelmsford town centre. There were various attractions and groups performing all afternoon. Lucia was with a team of Ceroc dancers who were strutting their stuff in the High Street. She came and sat on a bench next to me to catch her breath after a particularly vigorous dance. We got chatting. She’s been going to ceroc classes for about 4 years and was very enthusiastic and passionate about it. She says it’s a great way to socialise and meet new friends. She is also a big fan of purple, so we had something in common! Her daughter is a budding photographer too; Lucia says she has a very good eye for a picture, so I pointed her towards Flickr to share her work. Thanks Lucia for being so friendly and for sitting for me this afternoon.
I took a walk along the beach at West Mersea this afternoon. It was very hot and sunny but there was a cool sea breeze blowing. I struck up a conversation with Mary and her husband Patrick (Stranger #21) who were sitting on deckchairs enjoying the sunshine. In case you’re wondering, this isn’t a nudist beach – Mary was wearing a rather nice off the shoulder purple sun dress! She enjoys reading her book on the sand and watching the world go by. They have a caravan behind the beach huts which they use during the summer to stay in the area. Thanks Mary for being one of my strangers – I think your glasses are very stylish and would not look out of place on the beach at St. Tropez!
Rhian was the daughter of Stranger # 15 – Lynne and her uniform was new as well. She was apparently a Russian Militia Captain – the “only cop in the village”. I thought she looked very smart in it. Her red hair certainly matched the braid and badges! Thanks for having your picture taken, Rhian.
Lynne was another character I met at the War And Peace show. Her husband is a re-enactor representing the Russian Army and she has gradually become more involved over the years, along with her daughter Rhian (Stranger #16). Lynne works in a doctors’ surgery in real life, so it was only natural that she chose to be a Major in the Russian Medical Corps for her events. This was the first time she had worn her new, custom-made uniform – and very smart it looked too. The sunglasses probably weren’t authentic, but I thought they added a nice touch to her character! Thanks for agreeing to be part of my project, Lynne.