The Textile Market
Shoot the Street was conducted by David Nightingale and started with a morning class where he discussed both technical and social aspects of street shooting. David emphasized quick thinking and learning what story to tell. We discussed showing the broad view, shooting people in the context of that view and using detail within that context. We also talked getting people to agree to street portraits and how it was necessary to have a reason that they find acceptable. The reason could be as simple as “I’m a tourist – taking pictures is what tourists do” to having a project that the subject can buy in on. This is an area that I personally want to work on. In the markets of Dubai it was not difficult to get willing subjects, here in the states it can be more challenging.
Today’s trip would be to the fish and produce market in the morning followed by the textile market after lunch. Not wanting to be more disruptive than necessary we arranged for meetings at certain times and places with David for any questions or issues that came up. We then scattered working individually or in two or three person groups. The markets were covered but mostly open sided, probably a good thing with the number of fish on display. The fish sellers were among the most cooperative subjects we would have. Indeed, sometimes it seemed like their feelings were hurt if you didn’t take their picture.
Arguing over the sale seems to be a way of life
Being a market it was a very active place, with lots of preparation going on while customers prowled the aisles looking for the best deals. In the photo above there was quite the discussion going on over whether the buyer should get one more fish in his bag. All concerned seemed to be having a good time, haggling over prices being almost a regional pastime.
A short break from preparing fish
While the fish market was fun, after an hour or so I moved on to the produce side where is was somewhat less fragrant. Separated from the fish market by a small building where meat was butchered it was also covered, with a huge selection of fruits, dates, spices and other produce. One could make a meal out of the samples.
Dates and spices
I was encouraged to sample dates from the different countries in the region. There is a surprising variety of flavors among them, but I found all of them delicious. I even bought some only to find out that I couldn’t import them back to the US. Oh, well… two dollars wasn’t going to ruin the budget.
An aisle of the product market
The colors of the produce side of the market were quit the contrast to the fish market. The trip wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the meat market which was the only part in a mostly enclosed building.
As was the case in the fish market, the meat was butchered quickly and efficiently. Unlike what we’re used to in the US, the patrons purchased directly from the cutting tables. There is no doubt that your food is fresh when you buy in this kind of marketplace.With in now being afternoon, we regrouped for the trip back to the Knowledge City. David’s Shoot the City and Shoot the Street workshops were divided into field and post production sessions, so the next day (Monday) we reconvened in the afternoon for a class on post production techniques. This portion of the class could easily have been a workshop in itself, with a very good discussion and demonstration of Photoshop tools and how to best use them. In addition to the class David gave us access to his online course “The Art of Black and White Photography,” a course on using photoshop tools to create and enhance images converted to black and white. Having completed the course since my return from Dubai, I can highly recommend it.
Next up – Photo interlude.
Some more of my shots can be seen at my Flickr site here. Search for the Shoot the Street tag.