The candidness of street photography is something that I admire and appreciate. But it is also something that I feel inhibited to try it out myself as I feel very self-conscious about taking such candid shots. That is perhaps one of the reasons why you will rarely find people in my photographs.
But sometimes, people photo-ops are so compelling that my camera is out and the picture taken in no time. Like this wandering pianist I came across in London.
I saw this group when I crossed the Millennium Bridge from the Tate Modern side to St.Paul’s Cathedral. It was a sight that stopped me in my tracks, and had me pulling out my camera at the same time. Though I had seen wandering musicians of all sorts—violinists, flautists, cellists, oboists, saxophonists, trumpeters—before, this was the first time I had seen a wandering pianist. The rather battered piano was no barrier to the lovely music being played, or the camaraderie between this little group. I listened to the pianist for a little while, before moving on.
Though I wanted to go and speak to them, I didn’t do it and I’m not sure why. Today, as I type out this post, I do wonder who the wandering pianist was and who his companions were. Why they were at that particular place? And how did they wheel the piano around without the instrument suffering damage? Were they students conducting an experiment or were they students out to make some pocket-money?
Why didn’t I ask these questions then, I wonder…