“Ya never know what you’re gonna git,”- Forest Gump, talkin’ bout what his mama always said.

Street photography’s a lot like that, too. Walking around the city with your camera, you never know what kind of opportunities await. A little difficult during the lockdown, but now that things are starting to open up, I’ve been able to get out more. And it’s not just me. Seems like a lot of people are out, looking very happy and friendly. “Good morning’s… hello there’s,” everywhere I walk, almost like when I’m on a bike. Maybe that’s a hangover from the “We’re all in this together” phase. Well, I hope that it lasts.

I was walking down an alleyway just off College Street and came upon a young woman working furiously on her baby blue finger nails. No way would I sneak a photo, as it looked like a very private moment for her. So I just turned around and started back towards the street. But then, not able to get this unique moment out of my mind, I stopped, turned around, and walked back to her and said, “This is a strange place to be doing your nails.”

She just looked up and smiled. Seemed friendly enough and unintimidated, so I asked her if I could get a shot of her hands. She agreed and started posing. Funny how when you want to take a photo of a stranger, they right away become celebrities on the red carpet backdrop. But the result… a very interesting and beautiful portrait. And then I just thanked her and walked on.

Another time, I was walking around Our Lady of Lourdes on Sherbourne Ave. I noticed a lady praying to the statue. She wiped the statue down with disinfectant towels, and then she kissed it. I was watching all this and getting a few shots. Then I went over to her and told her that what she’s doing is very beautiful. She just looked at me and smiled. I’m not religious, but I was very touched by her faith.

Last week I was sitting in the patio of my favourite coffee place… Ideal Café in Kensington Market, having a Caffè Americano, with my camera sitting on the table. A man wearing white, very conspicuous sunglasses, walking by on the sidewalk, stopped and said to me, “Is that a Holga?”

“Nope, “ I replied, “This is a Fuji digital camera.”

“Do you even know what a Holga is?”

“Yes, of course, it’s a plastic, toy, film camera, very popular in certain cult circles.”

And we continued to have a very interesting camera conversation, until I asked him if I could get his portrait. He said yes, and when I brought the camera to my eye, he started moving backwards as if this was going to hurt, making Instagram-style selfie poses. This camera has a wide angle lens so I have to get in close. He was backing onto the street and I didn’t want to be responsible for, well, you know what. So I kept waving, “come closer”, and he did, and then, I got the shot.

[Click on any photo for the slideshow. Please leave comments at the bottom of the page]

Baby blue

This lady prayed to the statue, wiped it with a disinfectant, then kissed it. I’m not religious, but I was really touched by her faith.

Holga guy

With Great Beer we’ll get through this together!

The Naked Artist

You’re next

This way?… no that way!

fresh tattoo on left leg

Julie Dzerowicz doesn’t give a damn about you

Julie Dzerowicz’s office… right next to the store that claims she doesn’t give a damn about you


Open for business

What are you shooting?

the tunnel

El Mocambo re-opened. Brings back memories, although I didn’t get to THAT event.