We were told that the subject in my photo had escaped from China at the age of 16 and has sold food at Damnoen Saduak Floating Market in Thailand ever since. She is believed to now be more than 100 years old. I chose to capture a candid image rather than a posed one as she sold us rather delicious food.


100 Years Young by Kevin Thornhill
Nikon D7000; 18-200mm lens at 65mm; f/5 at 1/1250s; ISO 1600

Don’s response
Shooting candids is never easy. I think of it as being a form of choreography where the photographer is trying to dance as unobtrusively as possible.

Under the circumstances, Kevin Thornhill has managed to get all the elements into a pretty reasonable balance. We’re in no doubt as to the subject of the picture, and I like the diagonal formed by the boat. The subject’s cheerful expression and extended left hand are also nice touches.

Unfortunately, her marvelous face is so shadowed that the viewer has to work hard to discern anything about the all important gaze. Obviously opening up another stop would have provided more of the crucial detail, although there might then be some issues with the high key details blowing out. Some judicious local brightening of the face in an image editor would be an obvious first step.


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