Foto del Dia: 8/365- Working Hard at Pike Place

The Seattle Seahawks were playing for a wild card playoff spot against the New Orleans Saints. I figured downtown Seattle would be a nightmare. So I left the quiet solitude of Tulalip and headed to the madhouse.

Manzo Bros. Fruit & Produce seller Jodi Culton at Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle, Wash.

Before hitting the pavement of Seattle, I stopped by the Shilshole Bay Marina in Ballard. The sunset had a ton of potential with puffy clouds over head. As I headed through the mayhem of I-5 and onto Market Street, a front moving from the west began to obscure the setting sun. Bummer.

I stopped by the marina and headed to the fishing pier in hopes of getting my “Foto della Dia” with a person. That is my New Year’s Resolution after all. My photo of the day must have a person.

But since I’m not a mad scientist with a weather machine, I just packed up and headed towards downtown. Traffic was unusually light as the Seahawks continued to score against the reigning Super Bowl champions, the New Orleans Saints.

Parking was a breeze. Right behind the market I found a primo spot. And I only had to put in $1.00 into the meter. Cheap.

Manzo Bros. fruit & Produce seller T.J. Martino helps a customer at Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle, Wash.

I decided to go with only one body with my wide-angle attached. Carried an extra battery, my flash, and colored gels to balance the color.

I know the lights at the market are either fluorescent or tungsten. So balancing my flash (5600°K) with light that ranges from 2800 to 3400°K is imperative. It makes everything easy when you’re in post.

Michael "Miq" Romero busks at Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle, Wash.

When I photograph people with a wide-angle lens, I believe you get more intimate portraits. Especially when you are relaxed and unobtrusive. Your subject relaxes and begins to let you into their world.

That’s how I shoot. Preferably, up close and personal. Adding intimacy in the photo by being close and capturing candid moments. And I don’t like using a telephoto as I believe it is more intrusive than being close with a wide-angle.

As I perused the veggies and fruits at the market, I also noticed many of the shop owners and their helpers sporting Seahawks jerseys, caps, and jackets. Cool. Two birds with one stone.

So I stayed in the market and shot photos of buyers, sellers, and buskers. Fun times. And something to build my stock portfolio. Also, it’s a small project I’m working on: The Market. That’s just a working title.

It’s about the hustle and bustle of Pike Place Market. And the cool thing is, the more I go there, the more the people know me and relax. Therefore, I get more intimate photos of the participants.

Stargazer lilies at the corner of 1st and Pike Street in downtown Seattle, Wash., at Pike Place Market.

While talking to Jodi Culton of Manzo Bros. Fruit & Produce, I felt a spark electricity the market today which carried over into my photographs. Sellers and buyers were extra jovial and chatty.

There was a stark contrast to when I was here the other night. It was dark and somber. Perhaps today’s Seahawks win created an electrifying atmosphere and everyone was in an exceptionally happy mood.

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