Chess in the park

Taking photos here in Stockholm is literally and figuratively a world apart from taking photos in Southeast Asia. There's very little life on the streets, and the paranoia people emit when they see my camera is almost palpable. This is not to mention the cold weather and the fact that when I'm already familiar with a place I tend to have a difficult time seeing something new. Luckily there have been fleeting moments of sun and warm weather, and after the long, dark winter, people occasionally drop their guard and forget about the guy with the camera.

Such was the case yesterday in Kungsträdgården, a park in central Stockholm. The weather wasn't exactly warm (I overheard some Thai tourists complaining about how cold it was), but there were people out enjoying the sun, in particular a couple men playing street chess. I started out with this image:


The pic shows what was happening, but lacks dynamism. To make it a little more interesting, I moved to a different angle, closed in a bit, and tried to capture some of the movement of the game:


Not being entirely happy with this, I used the old trick of tilting the horizon:


and then cranked down the aperture to depict the movement:


which resulted in the best pic of the lot. I'll be the first to admit that this isn't much more than a mediocre image, but it is much more dynamic than the first, and I'm happy that I'm beginning to become more pragmatic about my photography. I also like the fact that I am slowly getting better at being able to pick out what I want to show, or what I don't want to show. Now if there was only more life here...