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Sunday, July 26, 2009

Man with the Cigarette.

Not many people in the Dominican Republic smoke. I don't know if it is because the culture finds it disgusting or because they just cannot afford a cigarette. Nonetheless, it is not a common sight although it must be more common than I imagine because people sit on the sides of the street selling packs out of suitcases on make-shift stands. Walking around the blocks filled with museums while attending a gallery opening, I came across a beautiful construction worker and begged him for a photograph. He was indifferent to the camera, but his friends fell in love and insisted that I follow them around the steel framed skeleton of a building to photograph the workers. I was able to get a few images that I liked, but this man pulled me aside and asked if I could take his portrait. I started to and then he pulled out a cigarette and wanted a photograph with it. He wanted to show off that he smoked, either meaning he found it to be quite cool or perhaps to show off how well he was to be able to afford a smoke. I have a series of pictures of him with his friends and a huge smile, but once he left the group he became quite serious and real, which is the real reason why I chose this image, because he felt more real in this image than any other taken.


Lindsey Stallings said...

cigarettes as a symbol are fascinating. this portrait is great!

Mary Ought Six said...