Of burgers and beer

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Street photography is an art of extremes in many ways.  As such, it can be hit or miss.  There are days on which I feel not enough memory cards in the world exist for me to capture everything before my eyes.  There are some days, however, on which I feel a blind lobotomized gorilla using Instagram on an iPhone can make better images than me even if I had a $25,000 Leica S2 at my disposal.

After a great day of shooting on Saturday in the middle of the snow storm (see here), I went back out into town on Sunday, yesterday.  My purposes were more so to meet up with a friend for a late breakfast, but given the photo-addict that I am, I brought my camera along for afterwards.  Out of twenty-some frames, I managed only ONE “good” image that I feel comfortable enough to actually process and publish, taken hours later in the early evening on Michigan Avenue.  The rest . . . well, I reiterate, a blind gorilla could have done much better.  But such is the nature of street photography.  It is a difficult art to practice, let alone attempt to master.  Considering that I have only been shooting street for two years now, I have barely scratched the surface on becoming a decent street photographer proper.  One day, perhaps, but it will take years, perhaps decades, even, before that metaphorical gorilla goes away.

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ONE “good” frame out of twenty-some.

Today, I found myself grabbing a camera and lens yet again while heading out to meet some friends for lunch.  The objective today was for a group of four or five of my fencing friends to convene at Kuma’s Corner in Avondale to fulfill our monthly tradition known as “Kuma’s Council.”  This tradition of meeting and eating there only once a month is due to health reasons mainly; if anyone attempts to consume their heavenly delicious ten ounce burgers too frequently, they would find themselves in an early grave.  But they would expire bloody happy, though, given how succulent and mouthwatering Kuma’s burgers are.  Given Murphy’s Law that anything that can go wrong will, everyone else today had impromptu exigencies arising suddenly, except for one buddy and myself.  The Council this month faltered into two bored and hungry blokes having burgers and beer (as a side note, we each enjoyed a pint of an IPA beer with the greatest name I have yet to encounter: “Kidnapped by Vikings“).  That worked out perfectly for my 24mm lens, though, as we sat at the bar’s end right by the open kitchen.  As I shot away, though, I could not help but to think back to something fellow photographer Adam Barbanell (ironically, a Council member who could not attend today) mentioned only days ago about sitting at the back room of a bar where everyone had a story and him suddenly wishing he had a camera.

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Kuma’s current burger of the month. Called Indian, it consists of their usual ten ounce beef patty (rare, as I usually prefer), topped with bourbon braised spinach, corn and sundried tomato gravy, a deep fried johnnycake fritter, and chive, all in a pretzel bun. Res ipsa loquitur.

All images © K. Dao Photography 2014, all rights reserved.