You must be an artist!


A rainy August Friday lunchtime in Leeds city centre. It’s so wet, the flags in front of the art gallery are shiny and reflective. There’s a lone figure faffing with a cameraphone pointing at the ground. That’ll be me, then.

I love rainy days for photography, light’s reflected and bendy, even though my  elementary physics tells me light doesn’t bend. And colours look different in the dull light. The reason for the faffing was the fallen leaf that looked, well, lovely in the light and the wet, though the leaf wasn’t quite in the right place, so I picked it up and placed it where it looked better. I got wetter, but it’s a small price to pay.

Despite the bad weather, I’d attracted a small audience from the nearby stall, curious about the lone hunched figure. I felt my behaviour warranted explanation, picking up wet leaves and putting them a few feet away can look rather odd.

“I’m taking a picture,” I explained, stating the obvious, then showing them the result.

“I never thought of that, what an interesting idea,” said one.

“You must be an artist!” said another. I laughed!

They were both fascinated and asked if I minded if they took a photo of the same leaf. Sure, I said, it’s not my leaf! And so they did. I think that makes them artists too!

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