I disagree. The photographer saw something from the street. The gentleman chose to go to an open window, where he was in public view. Flapping the shirt drew attention. And the shot was intended as an observation of a beautiful moment.
I think the shot was taken within ethical boundaries.
You are incorrect. He gave his permission as soon as he chose to do something where everyone c an see him. Private moments are done in a private setting. You are simply trying to make a fuss. There is nothing wrong here. Just an interesting public moment now immortalized on film.
I imagine this man doesn’t care if he is photographed semi naked or not. He looks ok with his age and show us his integrity although in an old body. When I look at him I have the same good and respectable feelings about what people are writing here, I see the same poetry Jon Marie wrote and I thank Scott for this beautiful photo.
Interesting discussion. I for one don’t agree with the comment that, because ‘everyone can see him’, he has no right to privacy. First of all: he’s not on the ground floor, you’d have to look up to see him. This could give him the illusion of privacy. Second: I feel there is a huge difference between someone seeing you and someone taking your picture and publishing it. This discussion very much reminds me of the recent one about the Kate Middleton topless sunbathing pictures, taken with a long-focus lens while she obviously felt not being overlooked. I don’t want to compare Scott’s pictures with an extreme example of voyeurism, I really don’t, but they could both raise the same similar: what are the boundaries of privacy when you are in a place where others can see you?
Having said all this: perhaps this man just doesn’t care, or Scott asked for his permission to publish the picture. Who knows?
Beautiful shot, but this feels a weee bit intrusive to me. Nonetheless, as always Scot, your work makes me wonder about the person – their personality, likes, dislikes etc. I wonder how he spent the rest of his day.
Oh my that old grandpa is so skinny! I like the funniness and uniqueness of that photograph, he is really serious and I fail to understand why he’s throwing his shirt through that window! I just love the shot,amazing!
Doubt my comment will be published, but I agree. It’s not as though the man was walking down a public street without his shirt on. He assumed (one would surmise) that he was in the privacy of his home and as such, was not presenting himself on public display for a photographer to shoot him.
I agree that this is a beautiful shot, but am too uncomfortable with i being published online without the subject’s consent. This dignified gentleman who obviously takes pride in his appearance deserves to control his own image. If this was a young woman in her undergarments, I doubt you would have published this shot. Does this man not deserve the same respect?
When you put yourself out a window where anyone and everyone can see you, you ARE giving your consent. Its not like Scott is using a long distance lens! Be sane, please. I swear some people here are just constantly looking for a soap box. Well…look elsewhere. What is public, is public. What is private is done indoors.
well, in response to the voyeuristic=not so good comments – can understand that sentiment, but after all, the man *is exposed to the public domain, since he *is already hanging out the open window in his underwear, and shirtless for all on the street to see, and clearly doesn’t care who sees him ;)
i respectfully never take photos of those cultures who have a strict taboo about cameras (Amish, for example) but if it’s not a cultural no-no, and you didn’t invade the person’s personal space while photographing…then it seems not so invasive…?
I’m sorry Lizz but I disagree. I really honestly love Scott’s work and I think this is a stunning shot, but I do think it is wrong to post this photo unless this was a set-up kind of shot. Maybe from a public domain point of view you can say it passes so from a legal point of view, but it has nothing to do with that, it should be just common sense to not post a photo that was taken in a private moment like this. Come on he was not running around half naked on the street, he probably stepped to the window for a few moments. I feel like this shot was posted with the claim to be art and to create the kind of discussion we are having now but I do think with the power there is now of using the internet we also need to treat it with common sense and respect to people. Yes, it is a poetic photo, so real, but I catch myself in voyeurism and wish it would be taken down. Sorry Scott, I had to speak my mind on that, I am still a fan of the work but that doesn’t mean I would agree on everything.
I love Scott’s work, too, and I don’t say this to be critical, but I also feel uncomfortable with this shot. My boyfriend is Italian and I spend a lot of time in Italy. The population density is high relative to what we are used to in North America – people in the cities live in apartments piled on top of each other for most of their lives. I don’t think it’s so much that he leaned out of the window without any concern that he would be photographed as much as he simply wanted to shake his shirt out and didn’t want to descend the stairs to the courtyard or street (I’m thinking of my boyfriend’s parents, who are very elderly and live in a very old palazzo without an elevator (they don’t get out much)). I don’t think this man expected to be photographed and for the photo to be published on a popular blog, and I do think there’s an element of public intrusion into private life with this shot.
Thank you for your well chosen comments. The moment appears very personal and private and while the photograph was taken from a public place it ventured into the private space of another individual and should not have been posted onto the internet. People do deserve privacy. I find this conversation quite interesting since I have just started a course on street photography and this type of situation has been discussed. Ultimately, the photographer made his decision.
I really like this photo. I thought about ‘privacy’ and how this photo could be viewed as invasive, but if it was a hot young buff dude no one would say anything about these things. Just because he is old does not necessarily make him vulnerable.
HA! Love this. It deserved to be captured on film. What crybabies some people are. If he wants to complain and knows of this, he can do it himself. Otherwise, you are hypocrites. I have seen pictures of people that are not looking at the photographer, and likely do not know their picture is taken, in every single blog. Not just this one. What makes this different? Because he is older? Surely you are not offended because you are seeing a male upper torso? Men walk around “topless” all the time. So its just his age. And that is NO REASON AT ALL. Otherwise if this bothers you then half the pictures in most street style blogs should bother you. If he is comfortable doing it in public, then he is fine with it. If he was shy he wouldn’t have leaned over a public street!
Thank you, Martine, for your most reasonable response. The picture sure packs a punch. Interesting just how bothered so many people are about this one. I think it’s because he is older AND shirtless. If he were dressed and just leaning out of the window, I don’t think anyone would have given it a second thought. If he were a YOUNG, shirtless “stud”, the only bothered that people would have been would have been HOT and bothered. He came to the window willingly and is, in fact, beyond it. What is “private space”? Where does it start and end? Why do we feel we “own” famous people, and can insert ourselves into their space, but not this regular guy? Interesting discussion…
This is why we love your blog.
We are super over saturated with photos of the same people at the same fashion shows such that they really don’t inspire anymore.
This photo however captures beauty of form and something sincere.
Its only good or pretty or correct if we are seeing some projected and build up reality?
This picture shows real life, in opposite of some just random and repetitive
States and mood, all around fashion and the obsession on the young, (just to be clear
I do not have anything against fashion)
To me, this picture, at first seems sad, but apparently that man has lived quite
A life and he is doing what he feels! Its nice to keep us on our feets nice gut dear sartorialist!
I love this photo, and I assume Scott would have got the subject’s consent, as I assume he does with all his photos.
Here’s a proposition for you: it’s not what someone is doing, or whether the photo will be published, or where you are or where they are: it’s that you’re photographing them at all. People have all sorts of legitimate reasons not to be photographed, including in a crowd and/or on the street (religious, professional et al) and you simply cannot decide for a stranger what is legitimate.
I think if you can see me, then you’re close enough to ask my permission to photograph me, and therefore: you should. Just as a human courtesy. Every person has a different set of feelings and standards about this topic, and you simply have no right to assume that someone else feels the way you do. Always, always, ask.
If it’s a ‘candid’ shot and you can’t ask first, then take it, show them, and ask if you can keep it or publish it or whatever you’re planning- and abide by their decision.
I love this pic. The only way to get to be this ripped and energetic at that age is either by genetics, discipline or combination. Bottom line is, this gentleman embodies what every man wish to be when the senior years arrive.