Hmmm… Someone – a complete stranger – took my photograph today, looking what must be pretty much my absolute worst. And after an initial reaction of freezing in horror at being caught so decidedly off-guard, at being the unrequested subject of someone else’s candid creativity, I smiled and gave him a wave as he carried on his way along the street…
I’m currently spring-cleaning at home, had taken down all the net curtains from our first floor flat and was properly washing the inside of all the windows, including scrubbing the paintwork on the window-frames, for the first time this year. We don’t have double glazing in this old Victorian brick build, so get a lot of condensation over the winter and it’s a never-ending job mopping it all up as best we can for the duration of the cold weather. Inevitably by springtime every year we have a grubby grimy filmy mess to clean up – which with the recent improvement in seasonal temperature was my main household task for today.
So there I was, standing precariously on a step ladder fully in front of our now-bared gable-end living room window with an old toothbrush and wet sponge in hand. Sweating from the effort I was dressed in an old pair of leggings, an oversized check shirt, my unwashed hair twisted up in a bun to keep it out the way, and with a determinedly grim expression of concentration on my face. Not, as I said, looking or feeling my best, and certainly not how I prefer to be photographed.
But as I glanced suddenly down into the street, I became aware of a young man raising his camera to his eye and taking a shot, of me in mid-scrub action, framed full-length in the window… My initial reaction was to freeze in horror, but I imagined if it had been me in the street, and know that I’d have liked to have reacted in the same way – taken the shot as it presented itself, and hope for the best. So I smiled instead, and took the hit for a fellow photographer who, after all, was just paying attention to his surroundings and doing what we all love to do best… 🙂