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Humor: The “Best” Excuses to Use When Doing Street Photography


English historian Thomas Fuller once said that “Bad excuses are worse than none.” To help street photographers who are having trouble responding to subjects after candid portraits, Swiss street photographer Thomas Leuthard has come up with a list of “the best excuses” to use on the street.

Here are some of Leuthard’s excuses, republished with his permission:

“I just shot this building in the background and you walked into my photo.”
“I’m a tourist and document life in the city”
“Do you know Bruce Gilden? He is even worse…”
“Do you know Vivian Maier? If you kill me, your photo will be released to public…”
“You should see Eric Kim, he is a creepy Korean tourist with a Leica M9…”
“There is this contest on Flickr I’m participating in…”
“I’m a photo student and our teacher wants us to shoot people. He is very tough…”
“I work on the 100 Strangers project…”
“I have this new camera I’m testing today…”

“I love your beautiful eyes…”
“You have an interesting face…”
“I love your style…”
“You are hot. Can I have your phone number…?”
“You look like my grandmother…”
“I’m a talent scout. Do you want to become famous…?”
“I’m a famous photographer looking for new models…”
“I thought you were a celebrity…”
“I thought you were a famous actor…”
“I took your photo, now you owe me 10 dollars…”
“I want to marry you…”
“Elvis is alive…”
“You look like Osama Bin Laden…”
“Don’t look at me, it wasn’t me…”
“My camera is stuck, it shoots by itself…”

“I have a really ugly wife at home and this is curing me…”
“I’m an investment banker. The recession made me do that…”
“I’m young and need the money…”
“I have an unhealthy addiction to ugly people…”
“Others use drugs, I do candid portraits of strangers…”
“You will be on television tomorrow…”
“We are making a movie, please stand back…”
“This is a crime scene investigation. I cannot answer your question…”
“Your wife wants me to observe you. You should bring her some flowers tonight…”
“Thank you, I will sell your portrait to a charity to teach disabled children photography”
“Give me your address, I will send you a print…”
“One day you will be proud that I took your photo…”
“No, I cannot delete the photo, it’s on film…”

In case you’re wondering how real people respond to these excuses, Eric Kim (the “creepy Korean tourist with a Leica M9”) actually recorded a video of himself trying out some of the lines (warning: it gets pretty awkward).

(via Reddit)

Image credits: a face in the crowd by jon smith., Louis Mendes by lourencoparente, street photographer by Paul Keller