Sarajevo posed some challenges when it came to photographing people. In addition to being distracted by the bullet riddled buildings, exotic architecture, and bustling streets (likely due to the high rate of unemployment), I found it very hard to blend into the city and get shots without having people walk through them.
With so many interesting subjects all around, including a traditional Tibetan Monk using a Samsung tablet on a street corner, and an adorable little boy playing an accordion even bigger than he was, I felt extremely frustrated that I couldn’t capture these wonderfully candid moments. Also, I know for a fact the little musicians mother was lurking in the shadows (likely holding his shoes) just waiting for me to take a photo so she could stalk me for blocks begging for payment in return – a mistake I was adamant not to make.
Fortunately I found some solace at night, and while everyone was busy meeting friends for dinner or attending evening prayer, I could disappear into the background somewhat. As a result, I was able to snap this photo through a small window in the wall surrounding a Mosque.
Catching a glimpse of the man on the right as we passed the Mosque, I recognized his hand gestures as a type of prayer I’d seen earlier at a cemetery we had visited. Without time to let Travis in on the plan, I quickly ducked against the wall, composed my shot, and took the photo while silently feeling guilty for taking advantage of such a personal moment.
I actually wasn’t too pleased with this photo at first. Due to the low light the man was very underexposed, and while the background was well lit and clear it wasn’t supposed to be the main focus of my shot. Unfortunately, there was no time to take another shot as the moment was over; however after getting it onto the computer and converting to black and white, I was really pleased with what came out. I’m going to take this as a lesson to never delete anything from my camera without taking a look at it on the computer first.