Photo expo: in search for the decisive moment

In search of the decisive moment (image: Jochem Oomen)

(Photo set will appear under the text.)

In the past century, the wellknown French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson introduced the term “le moment décisif”, which literally means the decisive moment. Capturing the momentum, freezing the moment, has always been quite challenging in photography. Choosing the background and waiting for a person, a tramway or a bird passing by and capturing the action at the right moment. That’s a strategy that photographers sometimes do use.

For years as a street photographer, I have tried to capture this moment really often. But I noticed that I needed some exercise. The coronavirus lockdowns gave me the opportunity to choose my decor and to wait until my subject passed by. To challenge myself, I opted for capturing the decisive moment in special light circumstances. I decided to do this as a final project for my photography studies at CVO Brussels during the first semester of 2021.

With my 50 mm lens, I roamed through the streets of Brussels, my hometown for years. Occasionally I went to other towns to give my creativity a boost: Antwerp, Liège, Mons, Leuven, Ostend… Normally these towns can be somewhat hectic, but Covid-19 transformed them into laidback towns, creating the ideal circumstance for waiting to capture a decisive moment.

Sometimes the sunlight and the shadows gave me inspiration and other times just the background. At those moments I waited. By times I got my decisive moment immediately, but often not. Regularly, I needed at least ten minutes, or even one hour – to capture my momentum. On occasions I even had to come back.

The result is a set of 29 street images – made in Belgian towns. Repeatedly, you encounter photos with almost recognizable persons. Their face masks, headgear or silhouette guarantee their anonymity. In times of Covid-19, I preferred to avoid a potential conflict between a random photographed person in the streets and the photographer. Most of us had already enough challenges to face in our lives during the pandemic.

You may also notice that the momentums in the images are different. Sometimes the right person is at the right place, sometimes the silhouette is partly visible. That is just an attempt to capture a “moment décisif”, but more than welcome in this series, because this is a search process.

Enjoy the virtual exhibition!

Best regards,

Jochem Oomen

PS If you have some questions or remarks, please send me an e-mail to info@jochemoomen.com or just write a message under this post. I promise you that you will get a reaction!

Option 1: gallery mode (click on photo to open gallery)

Option 2: scroll through individual photos

Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)
Street Photography Belgium (photo: Jochem Oomen)

20 Comments

  1. Simon

    Waaauw Jochem

    Reply
      • Carla

        Mooie foto’s !! Echt wel wawww !

        Reply
        • Jochem Oomen

          Dank je wel, Carla! We doen ons best, hé!

          Reply
  2. carine Naessens

    Prachtig Johem 👏👏👏

    Reply
  3. Laurent

    Super nice work Jochem, congrats on the work with the light. We love your pictures at the seaside.

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Hi Laurent, thanks a lot for your comment and the support!

      Reply
  4. Caroline

    Congrats Jochem! This is awesome work 👍👍👍

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Thanks a lot for your comment and your support, Caroline!

      Reply
  5. Hellen Mardaga

    Dag Jochem!

    Heel mooi gedaan. Zolang ik je ken maak jij erg kunstzinnige fotos. Streetfotography is echt jouw ding en dat laat je met je fotos zien. Knap gedaan!

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Dag Hellen, dank je wel voor de toffe feedback! Ja, straatfotografie is echt mijn ding. We blijven ons best doen, hé Hellen. Thanks!

      Reply
  6. Themis

    Hi Jochem, really nice and Inter project. It was really clever that you use Covid to capture, normally chaotic cities, into a different ‘light’

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Hi Themis, thanks for your great comment! Yes, due to Covid-19, our hectic cities transformed into relaxed towns.

      Reply
  7. Katrien COLENBIE

    Hi Jochem, even if I have seen some of these pictures already earlier, it was a great pleasure viewing them again! You make wonderful work. And you know why I call you the Lucky Luke of the photographers!
    Congratulations!

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Hi Katrien, thank you so much for this comment! Thanks again, the Lucky Luke of the photographers!

      Reply
  8. lea mathy

    bravo pour les magnifiques jeux de lumière

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Bonjour Lea, merci pour ton petit commentaire. J’espère que tu vas bien!

      Reply
  9. Luce Billion

    Dag Jochem, prachtige tentoonstelling! Ik hou van de strakke lijnen, waarbinnen het licht een heel speciale plaats

    inneemt. En dan altijd de nietige mens, als per toeval daarin aanwezig. Knap;

    Reply
    • Jochem Oomen

      Ha Luce, dank je wel voor dit leuke commentaar! De omstandigheden leenden zich hier ook toe vanwege de lockdowns. Het ga je goed!

      Reply

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