Street Encounters

I just answered a question for my new podcast Street Focus: An ongoing exploration of urban photography (soon to be launched on iTunes), about the experience of being a street photographer.

As many other street photographers will tell you, street photography is more about the people than it is about photography. It is definitely my interest in people and my curiosity that drive me to roam the streets with my camera for hours and hours as often as I can. Most often, my subjects never know I capture their story in a frame. The job of a street photographer is to be a close witness while remaining invisible. Other times I interact with my subjects and make a quick street portrait of them. They will either catch my eye because of their expression, their beautiful smile, their funky hat, or anything else that makes them stand out. Before we part ways I often hand them my business card and invite them to contact me for a copy of the picture. I often receive an email a few days later or they stop by my FB Page to say hello. I’ve made many friends that way!

I want to share the story of my encounter with Karim, aka. Falk Desdichado. I was walking down Chapel Street in Melbourne Australia last February when he stopped me to ask me to sign a petition (if I recall correctly). We started a conversation and he happened to be from France.

Two Frenchies on the other side of the world!

This was an opportunity I couldn’t miss and I asked him to make a quick street portrait or two and handed him my card in case he wanted a copy of it. The next day he visited my fb page and saw his picture in my ‘Beautiful Smiles of Strangers’ series. Since then I’ve been following the story of this talented young artist on social media and it’s made the experience even more special. Today I saw a link to his new song on FB and I thought of sharing this story with you.

Street photography is a beautiful thing, and you never know the friends you will make along the way. I am fortunate to have hundreds of similar stories that have enriched my life as a photographer and as a human being.

Here are a couple of snapshots of Karim I took that day for my Beautiful Smiles of Strangers series:


valerie Jardin - Karim-2 valerie Jardin - Karim-1



And here is the link to a new song by a talented young French artist traveling the world 🙂


2 thoughts on “Street Encounters

  1. Simply beautiful Valérie. I am always looking for different projects and your “Beautiful Smiles of Strangers” is one I would like to adopt for myself……….do you mind I’d piggy-back on your originality?
    PS: I am VERY new to SP and find your dialogue highly supportive. Thank you Valérie.
    From a senior newbie!


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