Thursday, August 17, 2006
Photographers right's in Kuwait
Even Saudi Arabia loosened it's tight grip on photography recently - allowing public buildings to be photographed.
I generally don't have any problems while photographing public places. However, on a few occasions, I have had people come up to me and question me why I am taking pictures. Few months back, while photographing this building, a woman walked up to me and wanted me to stop taking the picture because she thought that she and her friends - who were sitting nearby - might get included in the shot. I quickly took the pictures anyway, before she reached me.
This week, I was photographing the National Assembly building. I setup my tripod and the camera and started taking some long exposures. A Kuwaiti guy walks up to me and wants to know why I am taking picture of this particular building - and whether I am a presss photographer. Unfortunately for me, I don't know much Arabic and all I could communicate was that I am taking the pictures for personal use. He seemed to become suspicious and it looked like he wanted to call the cops or something. Luckily for me, my wife and kids were around, and when they walked up to me, he seemed to lose interest.
Moral of the story: When taking pictures of public places in Kuwait, it's good to have your family nearby as insurance !