Decisive moment -- image thread

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Jan 3, 2012
Troy, NY
I've poked around a little bit, and I can find no image thread dedicated to "the decisive moment." It's a phrase coined, I believe, by Henri Cartier-Bresson (HCB), and often refers to street or documentary photography, but it could occur in any photographic genre. It's a flickering, ephemeral moment when all the elements align just so, and an instant later, it's gone. Two of HCB's shots that crystallize the decisive moment are the person jumping over the puddle and the bicyclist zipping by the staircase.

And it doesn't have to be a photograph of a person. It could be any fluid, changing situation. Of course, one could argue that any time you freeze a moment in a dynamic scene with a still photograph, you have created a decisive moment.

Nevertheless I'm willing to bet that the folks who participate here at www.seriouscompacts.com know a decisive moment when they see one, and further that everyone here has captured his or her own decisive moments.

I'll start the ball rolling with my own decisive moment, captured just a few days a go. I get up early and see the sun rise most mornings. On this particular morning, there was a spectacular cloud formation to the south, and I stepped outside with my FZ200 to capture it. I took a few shots and was about to go in when a handful of Canada geese went tearing by overhead. The second shot I took of them captured my Canadian friends just as they were silhouetted against a patch of clear sky. It was pure luck and, in my view, a decisive moment.

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So what's your decisive moment, and what's the story behind it?

Cheers, Jock

Note to administrators: I couldn't figure out where to post this; feel free to move it wherever is appropriate.
 

olli

Super Moderator Emeritus
Sep 28, 2010
Sofia, Bulgaria
olli
Never noticed the geese, but it did strike me almost instantly that the cloud formation looks like a man running away while looking over his shoulder.
 

grebeman

Old Codgers Group
Probably not really a decisive moment, rather more of an unexpected capture, the spray from a breaking wave masking a photograph taken from the end of Mount Batten Pier



Perhaps this motor cyclist qualifies a little more since that was waited for

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I can't seem to get away from water in my photographs :)


Barrie
 

Petach

Hall of Famer
Oct 22, 2011
UK, Essex
Peter Tachauer

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Jan 11, 2011
Houston, Texas
Jack
This is an oldie, posted before. Out of all the photos that I've taken over the years, this was the most "decisive." However, it was just one photo out of the two dozens I took of the bushman's victims on that particular day. It was planned, and not a spontaneous occurrence that I just happened to capture with my hawk eyes and cat-like reflexes -- not! This photo turned out to be the best one due to the expression of the victims' faces. And it helps that the photo was actually in focus (not always easy with the M9). On a side note, I've seen various bushmen each time I've wondered at the Fisherman's Wharf over the last 4-5 years. It is one of the most creative ways of panhandling. And yes, I did tip this particular bushman as he provided me with countless moments of laughter.

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Bushman strikes again! by Armanius, on Flickr
 

Jock Elliott

Hall of Famer
Jan 3, 2012
Troy, NY
This is an oldie, posted before. Out of all the photos that I've taken over the years, this was the most "decisive." However, it was just one photo out of the two dozens I took of the bushman's victims on that particular day. It was planned, and not a spontaneous occurrence that I just happened to capture with my hawk eyes and cat-like reflexes -- not! This photo turned out to be the best one due to the expression of the victims' faces. And it helps that the photo was actually in focus (not always easy with the M9). On a side note, I've seen various bushmen each time I've wondered at the Fisherman's Wharf over the last 4-5 years. It is one of the most creative ways of panhandling. And yes, I did tip this particular bushman as he provided me with countless moments of laughter.

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Bushman strikes again! by Armanius, on Flickr
That is hysterical! Every person's posture tells a story.

Cheers, Jock
 

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