Tire Salesman of Old Delhi

TIRE SALESMEN OF OLD DELHI

Semetko speaks about his photograph of the tire salesmen in Old Delhi:

“I was walking through the tire sales area of the market in Old Delhi and the geometry of this scene stopped me in my tracks.

It immediately brought to mind a photograph by Henri Cartier-Bresson of two women sitting amongst stacks of boxes at the Fountain des Innocents in Paris.

Henri Cartier Bresson

I’ve spent many hours looking at the works of the masters (a practice I highly recommend) and as a result have a sort of an old school Rolodex of iconic images in my head. When I see something that accesses one of those ‘Rolodex cards’ in my subconscious I get very excited. Cartier-Bresson shot the vast majority of his images on a 50mm lens, and I was glad a 50 was on my camera at the time. The 50 gives roughly the same field of view as the human eye, and is helpful for rigorous, tight composition. The geometry of the tires is what caught me initially, but the expression of the man in the center of the shapes grabbed me as well. Only later, when I looked at the image on a larger screen, did I realize there are actually four people in this photograph.”

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