“Yesterday I saw a parking attendant who had just the right look in his eyes. I didn’t even introduce myself, I said, “Can I take your picture?” And either because I was so forceful, or he was so open, or there was something in my sincerity, he just said, “Sure”.
He was a fairly young kid. Weeping eyes. Eyes that really spoke of the pain of having to struggle versus really wanting to find a home. As I chatted with him as I was making the picture–again setting up the 8 by 10 is not like the snap-snap of an SLR. It takes 15 minutes to get the whole thing together. It’s a commitment and it’s building a relationship.
I find that important because I need to develop some kind of rapport with these people. So during that rapport building session, he mentioned he was going in the army. I said to myself, gee that’s just so fitting. To me when a young kid tells me they’re going in the army and they’re working in some parking lot or something like that; I don’t know for certain, but I say this kid’s looking for direction. But in his eyes I got the sense that the direction had to come from within him.
Anyway the kid had a nice pink shirt and red hair and a red hat. There were aesthetic reasons as well (he laughs), the psychological and spiritual element have to be there, but as well a successful image for me has to be aesthetically balanced.”