The Stranger (Photo Set)
I was in Chicago for New Year’s 2015 and, luckily, I took my Leica M6 with me. My stay was a short 30 hour trip to attend a friend’s wedding, assuming that I don't have much time to shoot, I didn’t reach out to anyone to work with while I was visiting.
Somehow I managed to make time for a few hours to explore the city the day I arrived. I took my camera, a box of Portra 400, and started walking around. Mind you it was 7 degrees. Just 7. What the fuck? Where’s the 7 behind the 7? Why isn’t it 77? Very Californian of me. After repeatedly asking those questions to a homeless man and getting no response, I realized I need to get over it and move on. And that’s when I came across her. She was wearing a Burberry trench coat with heels, walking down the street like she was about to put someone in jail. She was going from one building to the next, so she wasn’t covered from head to toe in North Face and snot. Her walk was strong and her posture confident. I never approach random people to photograph them, but I had to make an exception.
I went up, introduced myself, and explained what I do. She was intrigued but wasn’t sold completely. I told her that I would walk with her to the next block and if she didn’t trust me by then, I would go my separate way. When we got to the next block, she turned to me and asked for my phone. She typed in an address into my Google Maps and asked to meet her there at 2pm sharp. I got to the address, a hotel in the city, and found her in the lobby. She explained that the only way she would let me photograph her is to never mention her name and to never completely show her face. She happened to be the daughter of someone important, so she couldn’t risk having their family name “tarnished”.
We went to a room and the rest is what you see here. I had one hour until I had to be back at my hotel and get ready for the wedding. We shot, she called her driver to give me a ride, and I went onto attend a wedding.