I have a "bad" habit which affects my entire life, so it's no surprise that my photography is also impacted. Here it is: I arrive at events and appointments much too early. I'm not talking about showing up a few minutes early, but rather, thirty to sixty minutes. Mind you, I like to set up my equiment and mingle a little bit before I start shooting. Nonetheless, this can still lead to some awkward moments.
Take yesterday evening's photo shoot at Freedom Clothing Collective. I reached Ossington station at about 7:00 p.m., one hour before the event's scheduled starting time! Even after reading the Metro newspaper for a few minutes, I still had to kill time by walking in the neighbourhood and chilling at the corner of Bloor and Dovercourt.
I walked into the FCC a little after 7:30 p.m. and things became even more awkward. It must have been strange for the ladies there to see some dude walk into their shop and claim to be a photographer. I tried cracking wise to relieve the tension, but I only realized how bad the joke was after I said it.
Rule number one: never start a joke with "A black guy walks into the store," especially when you are black.
Thankfully, despite my early gaffes, the shoot itself turned out fine. Judging from this FCC tweet, it's safe to say that I knocked some socks off.