The Faceless Ones

Colourful exhibit at Place de la Concorde, Paris.

Street photography with children has obvious ethical challenges and, much more so than with adults, we seem to be wary of people taking such pictures. Notions of censorship from both the general public and also from within implicitly colour what we choose to image.

I spent quite a while photographing this installation (lots of concentrically rotating coloured glass, with people wandering around inside and out), and although no one troubled me I started to wonder if I was going to attract attention. Sometimes the censorship that we apply ourselves is the worst kind.

The horizontal bar is a handrail on top of a clear glass wall – it is not post processed.

I did not take many street photographs with the phone. The lack of shutter speed control and the incredible shutter lag make it difficult in many situations, although no one seems to pay attention to someone holding a non-descript black phone rather than a recognisable camera. I suspect that the reaction to taking a photograph such as the above with a DSLR might have been more problematic…


  1. Yea, I know how you feel,, it is difficult but now,I think (in the west!) the worst that can happen is that someone tells you to stop. So I just take photos of any subject that takes my fancy and smile sweetly!. Here in the UK and in the Netherlands you can take photos in most galleries and musea…. Looks a great installation you found to photograph.

  2. An excellent photo, and something of a sad story. After all, parents should not have to be afraid of their children’s photo being taken. Still, beautiful work.

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