Over the course of my 35+ year career, I’ve made millions of frames. This image remains one of my favorite images. There nothing specific that is technically proficient. There is nothing that stands out compositionally except for, well, the obvious.
In this modern era of photography, a photograph rarely remains timeless. No matter how old this photo is, it evokes a smile from whoever views it. To me, and many other photographers, that's what makes a photograph relevant.
This image was captured on New Year’s Eve at a Jewish wedding many years ago. The couple was in the middle of the dance floor during their wedding reception at the Rittenhouse Hotel, and I was photographing something on the other side of the room. I caught this scenario and saw the grandmother of the bride standing next to a bridesmaid…. who was wearing a rather low-cut dress. The juxtaposition of the bride's cousin’s bust line and the grandmother’s eyes instantly grabbed my interest.
I ran quickly to capture this moment.
I will always love this photograph. It’s hanging on my wall in my Haddonfield, NJ studio, and visitors from around the world have laughed and commented on this image. I show this photo at the end of every one of my photography seminars and workshops, and it never fails to make people laugh. It reminds me that no matter where or what time of day I’m shooting, there is always a picture to be made.
Eddie Adams, the great photojournalist, once said, "If it makes you laugh, if it makes you cry, if it rips your heart out, that’s a good picture." I think this image falls into that category.
This candid photo was captured with an old Nikon F5 film camera with a Nikkor 17-35mm F2.8 lens. I'm generally known for my use of light, yet I used direct flash on-camera, and it still stands out as one of my all-time favorites.