Today’s face is a woman with a split tongue.
This is from June of 2009. I was at a bar photographing strangers and asked this woman if I could take her picture. What I’d noticed when I approached her was her hair, which was a bright fun orange. She said “sure”, smiled and stuck out her tongue. The split was surprising, as was her ability to move both ends independently.
For a long time this was one of my most frequently viewed faces (it’s tailed off now, dropping from the top 10 and sitting at number 30). I’m sure there are occasions when a split tongue could be useful but I can think of a lot more when it would be a real pain in the butt.
What I like about this picture is the expression on her face and the color of her hair.
Today’s face is a woman with wonderfully kinky hair.
In April of 2012 my sister-in-law Sid wanted to go out for dinner and dancing on her birthday. I’m a big fan of both. A group of us – Sid and Steve, James and Chesley, Bill, Matt, Wendy and I – went out to the Fenway. I’m sure I could look back and find the name of the place we had dinner. It’s right there on Boylston. The food and drink were good.
After dinner we walked up a couple of blocks and went to a club downstairs. Again, the name escapes me but it wasn’t far. It turned out there was a fundraiser/memorial party that night. It was open to all though and there was a good crowd. It was a pretty gay crowd and a lot of fun. I danced for ages. Not everyone in our group was as into as I was but such is life.
During breaks from dancing I took the opportunity to talk with strangers and take some pictures. I don’t recall much of my conversation with this woman. Of course I asked if I could take her photograph and then we talked about how awesome her hair and necklace were and about what I was doing with the pictures. Pretty mundane stuff.
Anyway, I really liked her face, her hair, her necklace, her smile and her attitude and hope you will too.
For the last two weeks I’ve been off on vacation and it was great. But summer is fast ending and it’s time again for things to return to their normal course. Part of that is the return of the Face of the Day.
Today’s face is of a backup singer for Stephen Marley, taken at the House of Blues in Boston two years ago.
Wendy has always been a big reggae fan and we go to shows when we can (which is less often than we’d like). In 2011 we went to this show at the HOB. It was a lot of fun. What I like about this picture is the color. The purple and orange on her face and the halo of her hair looked so good.
Today’s face is a woman at a bar on New Year’s Eve.
For a long time I relied on a flash to photograph faces. Part of it was just what I was used to, and part of it was that I didn’t have any lenses fast enough to work well in low light situations. This night, New Year’s Eve 2010, I was out late with my friend Matt. Matt is pretty into gear. For a while he was getting camera equipment but his first love is sound stuff.
He had a 30mm 1.4 lens with him and I borrowed it for a while. I was talking to this woman and asked if I could get her picture. She had a cool pixieish look and said “yes”. I really like the colors in this one, how vibrant they are but not super bright.
A funny note, or at least a coincidental one, is that I bumped into her again a few months later. It was at the Somerville Theater when Wendy and I were there to see Jonathan Richman. That’s one thing I’ve found about the 1000faces project – there are often strange connections between the people I photograph and the photographs themselves. It’s cool.
Today’s face is a jeweler in New Hope Pennsylvania.
A few years ago I was visiting my parents and my dad gave me a watch of his that I remembered from when I was a boy. This wasn’t some fine heirloom timepiece, just a run-of-the-mill Timex from the early 70s I guess. And to be honest, it wasn’t the watch that was special as much as it was the band. Leather, almost two inches wide, it was emblematic of its time.
Try as I might to get it running, the watch wouldn’t work. So one morning when we were in New Hope to have some breakfast, run some errands and look around I brought it in to have it looked at. This was the person who looked at it. When we came back later that day she gave me the bad news – the watch would need a fair amount of work.
Since the watch wasn’t what made it cool I replaced it with a newer run-of-the-mill Timex. I wear it from time-to-time and always get compliments. It’s a cool watch.
Today’s face is a magician’s assistant.
At least that’s what I was told. This picture was taken in Beverly five years ago. At the time I was with Weber Shandwick and we were doing some work with GM. The program was intended to introduce people to GM cars in unexpected venues. We had a fleet of cars – a little Saturn convertible, a hybrid Suburban, a really fun Cadillac, a Buick – I can’t remember them all now and would take them to different events in eastern Massachusetts.
We went to the Bolton Fair, Newbury Street, the big milk bottle by the Children’s Museum, a BC football game, all over. It was a lot of fun and people seemed to enjoy checking out the cars. One of the events was a Lobster Festival in Beverly. It was a raw and rainy day. We had two cars with us – a Saturn and a Suburban – and set them up as best we could at the edge of a muddy field.
I don’t recall if the magician was with us or just happened to be nearby. In either case, he was a friendly fellow whose act (at least what I remember of it) was mostly making balloon animals. This woman was with him and was doing face painting.
Because the weather was lousy and the crowds thin, we all ended up talking – the Weber team and the magician and his assistant. It turned out that she was either a relative or a friend of a relative and had come from Russia. Her role and her relationship with the magician was kind of unclear. She was friendly though, and pretty, and her pink hat was a bit of bright color on a drab midsummer day.
This is one of the first faces I photographed with 1000faces in the back of my mind.
In February of 2008 I was in Austin on business. While I was there a few of us went out to have fun. We were all in a bar and a group of strangers came over and asked if I’d take their picture. I told them they probably wouldn’t ever see it but they didn’t care, they just wanted to have their picture taken. It was the first time I’d photographed strangers and it was fun.
Later that night on the street I took a few more pictures and then more at another bar. Not a lot, just a couple. When I got back to Boston I was at a local bar with my friend Matt. I was telling him about the fun I’d had photographing strangers in Texas and (I think) about my plan to continue. There were two women sitting next to us at the bar and eventually I asked if I could take their pictures. Both said “yes” and the woman above – Mel – was the first.
A whole lot of things were happening that night that I didn’t realize but which would have a big influence on the next couple of years. First, it was a Wednesday night, which was a night this bar had a band (at the time just a guy – Scott – playing guitar) and anyone who wanted to could get up and sing. Second, Mel and several of the others there that night were regulars and once I started showing up week after week I became one too. Third, I photographed at least 1000 people there over the next few years. In most cases they were, and remain, strangers; but in a few cases they became friends.
There was a lot of good that resulted from taking Mel’s picture more than six years ago now. I also saw some things that weren’t so good as well: poor choices, petty crimes, little dramas. All-in-all though the few years I was a regular there on Wednesday night’s were a lot of fun and I miss those times.