Kim Usan has been photographing strangers in Ottawa for a bit over a year now. I had never met Kim—or her husband & lighting assistant D’arcy—until our Saturday shoot at the GCTC Theatre in Hintonburg so I suppose I qualify well enough as her 54th stranger.
As an avid portrait photographer myself it always feels weird to fall under the scrutiny of someone else’s lens. While I’m safely ensconced behind the viewfinder I’m constantly imploring my subjects to “relax and act natural”; but the second I’m in front of the imperious gaze of an SLR I become awkward and stiff.
My own strangeness aside, Kim was able to coax out some great shots and I’m very happy to have been given the opportunity to participate. After reviewing the proofs she sent later, Kim told me that we were in virtual agreement about which shots worked. Truly a rare commodity. Thanks again, Kim.
Photo by Kim Usan. 100 Strangers can be seen at www.lemien.ca