by n
Uploaded 12 Apr 2008 — 18 favorites
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© n
Views 1045
Likes 1
Favorites 18
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

I met Danny while shooting around town with some friends. He asked for some spare change, I said "I'm not going to give you money because I don't know what you'll spend it on, but I'll get you something to eat if you want." He accepted. To be completely candid here, I realized right then, that in my heart I was not happy to be going out of my way to do this. I simply did not want to be giving him money that might go towards drugs or booze. So off we went to a nearby McDonald's.

While he ate, we chatted about all sorts of things. Eventually it came up that in the past he was in the military, a marine, and that is how he ended up in Hawaii. He gave me some advice.

"If you ever join the Military, go into the Navy," he said. "Life at sea can be hell, but you'll see the world, and you won't see combat."

"Not the Marines? like you?" I said half jokingly.

"You ever seen the movie 'Full Metal Jacket'?" He asked.

"Sure. 'This is ma' rifle!'.." I recited in a stern tone.

"Hahaa, that's the one. Well, that is about as real as it gets."


"Yep. Navy boot camp is much easier. I remember we used to have guys sneak over to the Navy boot camp. Our Drill Sargent would say, "let 'em go be idiots!" They'd come back thinking they'd skipped the days work. Nope, that evening the Drill Sargent would make them do everything they'd missed!"

He told me a few other stories that, well, maybe I'll have to keep to myself. I'm glad I got to meet this man, it really made my day. It came very naturally to ask for his portrait before we parted ways. This was shot sitting next to the big glass window in the McDonald's. I took two exposures, guestimating the light, this is the second one shot at f/2 and 1/60th of a second. It was one of those times, that as I looked through the viewfinder and saw his expression change to this, I felt supremely confident, and the photo seemed to imprint in my mind at the same moment.

-Leica M3, 50mm Summicron DR

-Kodak Panatomic-X expired in 1980

-Developed in HC110 B for 4:45min

8 responses

  • M.S. White

    M.S. White said (13 Apr 2008):

    Beautiful story and a beautiful photo. Makes you wonder how he got to this point. Kudos to you for sharing a meal.

  • !catherine marie

    !catherine marie said (14 Apr 2008):

    and he meeting you probably really made his day... beautiful piece on humanity ~ thank you.

  • Melissa Hearle

    Melissa Hearle gave props (15 Apr 2008):

    Great portrait! Awesome!

  • Matteo de Mayda

    Matteo de Mayda said (17 Apr 2008):


  • Vicki Koch

    Vicki Koch said (25 May 2008):

    If Danny ever see this! Thank you!!! Thank you for keeping us a free nation! Thank you for putting your life on the line for me...
    (nice photo! he should be very proud that you took such a great one)
    With great care,
    A Navy Brat,
    My daddy served for 31 years in the Navy!

  • Stefan Klasener

    Stefan Klasener said (19 Jul 2008):

    His face tells the story! Love the shot !

  • nicholas

    nicholas said (31 Jan 2009):

    awesome, great story

  • Leslie MAR

    Leslie MAR gave props (28 May 2009):

    I enjoyed the story and the portrait. Nicely done....

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