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Gratitude, 1967

Gratitude, 1967

People often accuse me of posing this photograph, but in truth I did not. A ladyfriend and I -- I no longer remember who -- were walking along St. Mark's Place about midnight in late February or early March. My companion gave this unfortunate gentleman a quarter, he thanked her in a manner reminiscent of a Catholic communicant receiving a host, and I shot this picture and maybe three or four other frames. Obviously the lens was a 28mm, no doubt wide open at f/2.8. Probably -- because of how fast I was able to react -- the camera was one of my lever-driven VT Canons, but maybe it was my Pentax H1A with its extraordinarily sharp Spiratone f/2.8 preset lens. The lighting is what we used to call "available darkness" -- ambient illumination from street lamps and windows. The film is Tri-X, pushed -- I know this from the approximate date -- to 1200 in Diafine.

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