Food Truck Festival… Again

BBQing the ribs.
BBQing the ribs.
Another happy cook
Happy cooks at The Fat Falafel

So. I promised you that my first post of the day was just a test. It was. What is really cool about that post is that I did everything, except make the picture, on my i-Pad. This is very important since I’m trying to travel even more lighter these days. I reckon if I don’t need a laptop, the will cut my carry on luggage down to very little. I’ll test it next week from the road. Hopefully, it will work as well as I’d like. What would be extra cool is if I could just think pictures and not need a camera. Kidding.

Tonight. There is a big movement in New Orleans to legalize food trucks. Actually, it’s not to make them legal. They are. But, they are restricted. So it’s really an attempt to make the current rules a little less strict so that they can park in certain locations in the city for more than a few minutes. Some of the city council people are actually championing this. That’s all good. If you’ve read Storyteller for any length of time, you know that I really like street food in all forms. In all countries. So, of course, I really like the idea. In order to drum up public support, someone came up with the idea of holding monthly food struck festivals. Many of them are organized in Central City on Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard. That fits in very nicely with my long form project. I can photograph and I can eat. Pretty good, huh? There were ten food truck tonight. Ribs. Very high-end grilled cheese sandwiches. Burgers. Hot dogs from Dat Dog. Great coffee. Soul food. Falafels. Mexican food. And, so on. Get in line. Order. About ten minutes later you are eating. There’s pretty good music, too. And, plenty of tables on which to enjoy your dinner.

The pictures. Technically, I did pretty much what I always do. Content was important last night. A close friend of mine  suggested that I’ve been framing too tightly and that I wasn’t leaving enough background information in the picture. So, I loosened up. That’s a big switch for me. I like to frame tightly and graphically. The other change was working more with the people whom I photographed. You see the results in each frame. Even though the top image of the man grilling ribs is graphic, we talked enough for him to ask me when he could shut the lid. I worked quickly because I think that he’s trying to feed people and I’m just making pictures. Oddly, chatting with people is easier for me than framing more loosely. For many photographers that’s reversed.




  1. Hi Ray,
    Enjoyed the people images – close up or loosely framed. You mentioned using your Sony NX and I was curious how you feel about it compared to the DSLR. I’ve been intrigued by the mirrorless for the lighter weight convenience for travel. My DSLR is a crop so I don’t think there is a big difference in the sensor.
    Don’t know why but I loved the crush can in the background – just adds to the realness of your images.
    Sounds like fun to me – food trucks & photography!


  2. Thanks, Kathy. Since my DSLRs are Nikons and Sony makes sensors for Nikons, there is no difference in the sensor quality for cameras with liked-sized sensors. So a 16.2 mega pixel sensor in a Nikon is equal to the same in an NEX body. With one difference, the Sony cameras are newer so the sensor might be slightly better in terms of engineering. The processors seem slightly better too. Weight is one issue. The other issue is that people don’t cringe when they see you pointing a camera at them. In fact, last night, the cameras became a topic for discussion which, for me, was an entry point. The crush can? Ah. This is New Orleans. There’s trash everywhere, I’m sorry to say.


  3. Hi Ray,
    The crush can isn’t trash, it’s a part of the scene, 2nd shot behind the woman in the orange shirt. I love that shot of them, their faces tell a story. I agree with you that there is trash everywhere but it certainly isn’t unique to NO.
    I understand the convenience of shooting a little more “stealth” in capturing street scenes with the sony. As someone who avoids her photo taken, somehow smaller just seems a lot less intrusive.
    Thanks for sharing and giving the background – helps to place me there mentally. I have so much to learn….


    1. Hi Kathy. I’m still not sure what you mean. I mostly focus on faces. Hmmm… I probably wasn’t being clear when I mentioned people not cringing which is different than me being stealthy. For one thing, I’m too big and bulky to ever be stealthy. But, I am friendly. But more importantly, I like to engage the people I’m photographing. I guess a better way to discuss “small cameras” is to say they are not intimidating. Using a little camera with a smaller length lens and walking up to a potential subject is far better than using some big monstrosity and pointing it someone. 🙂 For me, at least. From a compositional standpoint, using long lenses creates compression which makes pictures look sort of flat. Using shorter, wider lenses can create layering and give the picture some dimension. — Ray


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