Hard to Fathom

I have had a real appreciation for the Amish culture for many years, and have captured many images over the years of life in the rural countryside in my area. Generally speaking, the Amish are not very accepting of photography and Usually I try to use long lenses to keep from getting in their face and allowing them to go about their day-to-day life without intruding. The reason I share this is because both myself and my friend saw something the other week that stopped us in our tracks. We went to the mud sale to capture a few images of local culture and we were using long lenses to keep low-key, but as we stood there talking, we saw a group of people heading our way and every person was carrying a camera. The Amish seem to accept the fact that they are at a public venue and that cameras will be there and they may have their photo taken by someone in attendance so they basically ignore the occasional snapshot being taken. This group was different, as dad,mom,brother,son,daughter and everyone else in their entourage was toting a camera. We thought nothing of this till we started seeing the younger kids going right up to Amish children and shooting right in their face, and then to top it off they would show them the image on the lcd screen. The truly baffling thing was the kids seemed to enjoy seeing their picture on the screen and would pose even more. We saw a few older Amish teens stop and look at the fiasco, but did not stop the activity, so we were truly puzzled. They would use wide angles and be feet from them and laugh hysterically as each new frame was shot, and I just stood there thinking I wanted to smack the whole crew. I figured if it was not bothering them, then who was I to intervene, plus I realize we have the right to take photos, but this was about as obnoxious as anything I ever witnessed. My friend walked away at one point because his head was ready to explode, and after I asked one kid where they were from, his parents came over and wanted to be buddy buddy with me,but I basically ignored them as I was growing increasingly irritated with them. Anyway, here is another image from the auction,plus one of a portion of their crew shooting like a hollywood celebrity was passing by. Hopefully they wont be back to our state anytime soon,but i am not counting on that happening as I was sure I saw the main guy here last year,minus his family. They will probably come in a tour bus next year with the relatives.

Advertisements