I’m not particularly fond of taking pictures of homeless and destitute people. When it comes to ethics in street photography this demographics is one of the most controversial topics. And one of the most popular to shoot as well. And as long as I don’t want to make any statement with my pictures I prefer not to opt for this quick-n-easy street scene. (Eric Kim has got a very good video about ethics in street photography)
But this photo is an exception. The building behind is the headquarters of one of the largest oil companies in Russia, so the opposition or contrast here is kinda obvious. Something along the line of poor-rich etc. When I saw this woman I thought “well, that’s just symbolic. Russia is one of the biggest oil countries in the world, and those companies earn billions of dollars, and almost every one of them belongs to the government at least partially. So how come there is no proper social care and help for these people?”
Another way of looking at this photo, considering the background, is that the woman begs the rich in that building for some money.
You can think of your own message as well, so I’m not going to go deep into the analysis. Just let me know what you think of this shot in the comments.