People watching from a cafe on Cuba Street in Wellington, New Zealand, Sarah suddenly had an idea “Hey mum, I challenge you to do the 100-Strangers Project featuring a rainbow of hair color.”
It’s a new twist on an old challenge to help improve my portrait photography skills. Last year I never completed the 100 Strangers Project as I tend to be too intimidated to ask random strangers for permission to take their photo. It is easier now as I can start out by admiring their cool hair colour (and yes, I really do find coloured hair attractive).
I have read lots of descriptions of the 100 strangers project and each seems to be a bit different. I don’t know the original parameters. I know that my challenge was to approach, introduce myself, explain that I am doing the 100 strangers project, and ask to take a photo. The goal is twofold. First, to increase my confidence in asking to photograph people I don’t know and second, to polish my portrait photography skills.
It sounds simple, but it wasn’t for me. Rather than completely random strangers, I had to find and photograph 100 people with interesting hair. The finding part is pretty easy in New Zealand.
A Rainbow of Hair Colour
Often it’s the people that inspire me to travel, so I love the diversity and cultural expression. But more importantly, this is my best photo tip. If you want to improve your photography, you need to get out and take photos. If you travel and like to include people to help tell a story with your images, you need to be comfortable approaching them and asking permission. They are more relaxed, and your image will be better. For me, the 100-strangers project was the ideal tool.
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