The topic of taking photos of people and asking permission came up recently on social media. Fine. Each to their own. To me, taking a photo and staring at someone is the same thing. No difference. As is writing a poem, or telling a story. A photograph is a memory. Some people have excellent photographic memory. Each to their own. You do what you're comfortable doing. It's never bothered me to take photos of strangers without permission, and I’ve never really been bothered much in return. I don’t seek to take photos of people specifically, I take photos of the world around me. People are part of the world. Photos are a record of reality. Once you ask permission, you create a self-awareness and you disturb the reality. If Gary Winograd, Joel Meyerowitz, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Frank, William Eggleston or Vivian Meyer “asked”, then we would not have such great photographs as these; reflections of the human condition. Art.
"There is a marginal point where I can stand here and it’s one picture or I can stand there and it’s a different picture. And this decision, of what is the meaning of what’s in the rectangle is entirely my decision. It sounds wrong, because I didn’t create the landscape, but that decision so drastically alters the meaning that the weight of the decision becomes very interesting."