Beer Money....

Uploaded 20 Oct 2008 — 13 favorites
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© Ahmed Roberson
Views 283
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Favorites 13
Comments 28
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More of Ahmed Roberson’s Photos

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Photo Info
UploadedOctober 20, 2008
TakenOctober 19, 2008
MakeNikon Corporation
ModelNIKON D80
Exposure1/100 sec at f/4.5
FlashNo Flash
Focal Length85 mm
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Q: Choosing a Pentax prime lens

A: Do you know?

Photo license: © All rights reserved

I feel so lucky at times to be able to meet the very interesting people roaming the streets of Long Beach.

I was on my bike sitting on one of my favorite corners to shoot when I met this gentleman.

I didn't get a chance to get his name as our transaction was very brief, but all I know is, he moved VERY slowly, smelled like a Brewery, and spoke like Wolfman-Jack.

He asked me for a little bit of change, and I counter-offered him a dollar for a quick shot, and a short story, but because of his intoxication, all I got was this quick pose, and an additional request for $5 for Beer Money for 'me and my friends'....

I don't drink, so I try not to fund it. The dollar I gave him was for his time, and for me to take a clean shot. His choice to use it for Beer is exactly that, but I will not give more than $1, unless it's genuinely for food.

28 responses

  • Antonio Perrone

    Antonio Perrone said (20 Oct 2008):

    I like this portrait, congratulation :)

  • Stefan Hudson

    Stefan Hudson gave props (20 Oct 2008):


  • John Linton

    John Linton gave props (20 Oct 2008):

    Great shot.

  • Arla Ruggles

    Arla Ruggles gave props (20 Oct 2008):


  • Regenia Brabham

    Regenia Brabham (Deleted) said (20 Oct 2008):

    A great shot. Sad to say, but money given to them is used for alcohol or drugs. Next time, try taking food instead and then you know you are not helping to fund the other things.

  • Ahmed Roberson

    Ahmed Roberson said (20 Oct 2008):

    I totally agree with you Regenia, but a lot of times, they don't even mention food. To be honest, this is one of the first homeless guys that I've had the pleasure to meet that actually was bold enough to honestly ask for Beer Money. Usually, they just ask for a little change, but in order for me to get them to allow me to shoot them, and possible get their stories (Like the "Snowman" in this gallery), I offer them a dollar or two just to make them more comfortable, and make it worth their time.
    Also, I do have another photograph of a gentleman that I met that actually did ask me for a dollar for food, and I have that shot, but I have not had the change to process it as it is a little soft/out of focus, but he was much more humble, and honest about looking for food.
    I will post that shot tonight, but I do not have his complete story either.
    Thank you for your interaction Regenia ;-)

  • Billy Houckham

    Billy Houckham said (20 Oct 2008):

    Nice photograph,Nice title

  • A F

    A F gave props (20 Oct 2008):

    Ahmed, great background to go with the great picture.

  • Alfredo Moreno

    Alfredo Moreno said (20 Oct 2008):

    this men is same to Chuco Peña!

  • Jyri Vissak

    Jyri Vissak gave props (21 Oct 2008):

    Very interesting shot and story!

  • V. Anthony Rivers

    V. Anthony Rivers (Deleted) gave props (21 Oct 2008):

    Great shot Ahmed. I should probably take a trip to Long Beach and see what I can capture. I typically hangout in Venice, downtown LA or Watts/Compton among other places but never checkout LBC. Excellent portrait and I'm sure the stories enhance what you do even more..

  • Kelly Cummings

    Kelly Cummings gave props (21 Oct 2008):

    Great shot Ahmed. I sure wish i had as much things to photgraph along with stories like yours. Excellent as always.

  • Ahmed Roberson

    Ahmed Roberson said (21 Oct 2008):

    Thank you as always Kelly! Yeah, there is a lot to photograph along my way, and although it may be sad to shoot, it is real, and sometimes, a little journalism goes a long way. Hopefully, someday soon, someone important enough will see this and make a difference.
    It is amazing in Long Beach. On one corner, it is absolutely beautiful, and on the VERY NEXT CORNER, there are MANY homeless.

  • Lynn H

    Lynn H (Deleted) gave props (22 Oct 2008):

    Super portrait!

  • Rod Beveridge

    Rod Beveridge gave props (23 Oct 2008):

    Great photo, lots and lots of real life detail here, good stuff.

  • Kris Martin

    Kris Martin gave props (24 Oct 2008):

    great photo! i like his facial expression and interesting story too

  • *#!@&*June Phillips

    *#!@&*June Phillips gave props (25 Oct 2008):

    Ahmed I was very moved by this picture and the story it tells of addition in America. This man was and is someones loved one at one time in he's life they most likely still care they just can't handle the pain of watching the ravages that booze and drugs can inflict. He is most likly a nice person but his addition can and will distroy him. At least you paid him for his time which is not something most people would do what he does with the money is on him.

  • Ahmed Roberson

    Ahmed Roberson said (25 Oct 2008):

    I so hear you June! He actually was a nice guy. Our conversation was brief, but he was very charismatic, and easy to talk to.
    I actually do get to shoot and meet a few of the homeless in LB, and they all have been very nice.
    As long as you treat them like they're still people, they'll be glad to talk to you....just like the guy in my "Snowman" picture.

  • Karen K Smith

    Karen K Smith gave props (27 Oct 2008):

    Excellent story and portrait!

  • Ken McElroy

    Ken McElroy gave props (29 Oct 2008):

    Great character capture. What an interesting visage. As you say he's made some choices and he chooses to live his current life for better or worse.

  • Ann Reece

    Ann Reece   gave props (31 Oct 2008):

    This photo really "talks" about how the man seems to be feeling. He does look lonely and probably is. We usually never give street people money because of the fact that they usually use it for drugs or alcohol. I can see your reason for it though to get a good photo and maybe a story out of them. My husband gave a man a few dollars this week because the man had two really cute dogs with him. Ed can be a softie abot dogs. I told him it would be much better to just go buy a bag of dog food and give it to the man. He has a bag of dog treats in his truck that he gives to a particular dog at the bicycle shop. When Ed shows up in the shop that dog knows that the "treat man" is there and comes looking for her treat.

  • Blair Baker

    Blair Baker gave props (2 Nov 2008):

    With or without his story, this is an outstanding portrait. You captured him perfectly. Very compelling photo Ahmed.

  • Tannaz santos

    Tannaz santos said (5 Nov 2008):

    Nice portrait!

  • Christian L

    Christian L (Deleted) said (26 Dec 2008):

    Great street portrait. I think you captured the mood and the moment here. I also love the HDR effect, it gives it a lot of texture. My kind of shot.

  • William Garvey

    William Garvey gave props (9 Jan 2009):

    Really nice shot and a great retainer fee...

  • Sarah Storer

    Sarah Storer gave props (19 Mar 2009):

    This image speaks a thousand words Ahmed... A real gem xx

  • Michele Wambaugh

    Michele Wambaugh (Deleted) said (9 May 2012):

    Great character study!

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