It seems like the entire City heads central on the last Sunday of every May for the Lilac Festival. The first of many festivals of the year, the Lilac Festival indicates the official start of Spring for snow hardened Calgarians. Emerging from their dens after a prototypically harsh winter, much like our Punxsutawnian rodent friend, Suburbanites take over the city core in search of both their shadow and churros. The influx of pasty skinned bodies creates a furious frenzy of sun craving maniacs migrating slowly North and South on 4th Street SW. Birkenstocks afoot, strollers at the helm and toy dogs tucked tightly under arm the zombies weave in and out of the merchant stalls distracted by shiny beaded jewelry, bubble guns and foreign foods not commonly approved for sale or consumption in most suburban strip malls. Yes my friends, Spring has arrived to Calgary and the Lilac Festival is Mother Nature's red carpet.
Ok, I’m sorry for being so cynical! I’ve been watching a lot of Anthony Bourdain’s new series on CNN and his tongue–in-cheek brand of narration is quite engaging and strangely infectious. The truth is, 2013 was my first Lilac Festival in many years and I was not prepared for the throngs of people taking to the streets. I live downtown but I haven’t been the biggest fan of crowds these days. They are messy and confused and I find I have a hard time concentrating on composing good photos. I usually am quite social in most scenarios but Sunday’s Lilac Festival didn’t particularly inspire me. As a street photographer this is something I need to work on; crowds are an inevitable evil in this pursuit. It’s ones ability to work the crowd that makes them a successful street photographer. No disrespect the the Suburbanites; I've got mad love for ya'll!