Just for fun, I wanted to see if I could replicate another photographer’s style of street photography. I wanted to see if I could live up to my belief that ‘it’s not about the camera, it’s about the photographer’.
Basically, it came down to keeping my camera slung at waist height, my lens at 35mm f/2.8, and my focus manually locked to about five feet in front of me. I was literally shooting from the hip and, although I only gave the whole exercise about 10 minutes around one Sydney location, I’m reasonably happy with the results – which you can see in the photos above.
But then I noticed something funny. If you’ll indulge me, look at the above photos again…
Now look at this.
It’s the cast of The Bachelorette, which apparently takes place in this country.
See anything strange?
I started diving through the rest of the photos in my Street Photography collection…
Like these lovebirds in Paddington.
This street artist at the Queen Victoria Building.
These kids in front of the George Street cinemas.
Or these ladies not far down the road from them.
Now look at the cast of The Bachelorette again.
As I’ve written before, the Australian media has a whitewashing issue. It’s one thing to write about how Australian television doesn’t represent any kind of reality I understand as a Sydney resident; it’s another thing to actually see it before my eyes.
People talk as though The Bachelorette is clever because it shows what happens to gender dynamics when traditional power roles between men and women are reversed. It’s great feminist fodder.
Yet these same people seem to be completely comfortable with the show’s preposterous cultural imbalance. I mean, look at it. Every person in the cast is bronzed and white. It’s patently absurd. My photos alone are evidence that ‘cultural diversity’ isn’t a made-up buzz phrase for academics to throw around – but for some reason, people are giving The Bachelorette a free pass.
And to be brutally honest, the gender dynamics on The Bachelorette are only mildly amusing if you’ve never seen an episode of If You Are The One – an equally trashy show from China that happens to include Caucasians of every persuasion (seriously, watching a Frenchman try to impress 21 Chinese women, 2 Korean women and one Russian woman in Mandarin is fricken hilarious).
I have no expectation that anything I have to say will change any of this, and people have the right to watch whatever they please.
I know many people who watch The Bachelorette.
I often tell myself to stop asking why.
People just like to watch garbage.