Quote Originally Posted by 36cm2 View Post

As for the characters having departed, I don't buy it. On my way to work this morning I saw a fight break out between a lady with three purses and a beverage delivery man on his route. Each was quite a character and the two together made quite a scene. A few minutes later, I saw a fellow swaggering down the street with an "eightball" trenchcoat right out of Shaft. The characters are still there, we just have to see them.


I take your point. however, re. the fight that broke out.....is this not an oddball "incident" rather than part of the flow of everyday life?........I'm thinking of a couple of Cartier-Bresson's pics. here.....for instance, the well known picture of the young lad wistfully walking along the street; a bottle of wine clutched under each arm...would you see this scene today?.......more likely he'd be in parent's car as it backed into the car park of his local Majestic Wine Warehouse...........
Take another example of Cartier-Bresson's work...the family group having a picnic along the backs of the River Arne. .....the senior male of the group, somewhat overweight, his trousers held up by braces...knotted handkerchiefs around heads.....a slight air of comedy about the whole scene........Imagine a similar group today......the male would be wearing designer wear T-shirt and shorts....the females would probably be clad in bikinis, with designer wear sunglasses........would you even bother to take a picture??!!!

I do agree with your comment re. the artist rising above the ordinary to make something extra-ordinary out of things....and in cities like London, in market places and pedestrianised streets, perhaps it's still possible to grab some images of interesting street life.......but i'm inclined to think there was a lot more of it about in Cartier-Bresson's day!