In the bustle of the thoroughfare below the Acropolis, Athens, these musicians were playing the crowd. The instruments on the left of the photo are Bouzouki (I think!) and it was easy to imagine a scene like this being played out over the millennia - the details would change of course. Bouzouki arrived in Greece only recently - the 1900's - and the musicians' dress code is modern. But it brings history to life, doesn't it ? Imagining past citizens look like modern citizens.
As the photographer, I worked this shot. Zoom lenses have their merits but they can make you lazy. Zoom with your feet, is the saying - meaning walk around a bit. Get closer. Angle the camera. My first images were from my eye level, sideways on. Maybe I was shy, it was less intimidating but also less interesting, less involving and also, more clichéd. This image here enhanced the shape of the instrument case, the flower helped with depth and colour contrast, there are leading lines from the cobbles, leading the eye in. The musicians are busy but eye contact helps with the sense of involvement. Of course I still felt a bit shy but that diminishes as you become more immersed - and some coins for thanks helps with that. More importantly, long before I got to this shot, informal permission was given, using that universal method of a smile, a point to the camera, and a nod. Street photography is a balancing act of capturing the decisive moment in a context of respect - and as a visitor and guest, even more so.
Not a perfect photo, of course (whatever that is) - my shadow is in there, and the light is harsh, but I'm happy with the return for my effort.
Thanks again to Visalis of http://www.photowalksinathens.com/
Image details : Canon 5D, 16-35 II at 18mm, 1/2000, f/5.0, ISO 200, exp -2/3
Thank you for reading.