On a recent trip to Seattle, I took advantage of a beautiful morning to walk the Pike Place Market. Usually bustling with activity, the market was rather calm so early in the morning. Vendors stocked their stands, florists bundled bouquets, and trucks delivered fresh fish from the sound. Only a handful of people walked the wet, brick streets. It was a nice way to enjoy the market and take a few photographs.
As I walked down to the pier overlooking the Puget Sound, I saw a young woman taking in the same view. Her red hair was backlit by the morning sun and reflections from the water below were vivid in her sunglasses. Often times I have to work hard for a shot. But, as I saw her standing there I instantly knew the photograph I wanted to create. I grabbed my camera, metered, focused, and clicked. Before I could take another, a friend walked up to her and the opportunity passed. The moment didn't last long, but I felt so energized by being able to capture it. It's probably the best street photograph I've taken to date.
Empowered by the experience, I started looking for the next shot and while walking back through the market I met Bailey and her aunt. I was struck by her red hair against the blue water and gray sky. I grabbed a business card from my bag and nervously introduced myself. I asked to take her portrait and she graciously agreed. I took a few photos before thanking her for her time and walking away. It was the first time I had worked up the courage to approach someone on the street and ask to take their portrait. The photo below was captured when a perfect little gust of wind blew across her face. If given the opportunity again I probably would have taken a little more time, but the experience gave me confidence to take similar risks in the future.
Rather pleased with the morning, I stopped at the original Starbucks and made my way back to the hotel. It was an excellent way to start the day.