what makes a great photo? when you're at a game or out canvassing the street for something to shoot, how do you know when to depress the shutter relase and capture an image?

I've often talked about the mind's eye - seeing in your mind an image and then capturing it on film or in a vast matrix of 1s and 0s. That's just how I'm wired as a photographer. I see a movie or slide show (thank heavens no more Powerpoint presentations) in my head and then I try to make it real.

That was the case during my most recent trip to Munich. Just as I was coming out of the Hofbrauhaus I saw my friend Herr Robin, the statue/mime. I call him Herr Robin because, to me, he looks like Robin Williams twin brother. Herr Robin has been in the same place, at the same time, during my last three trips to Munich.

This time in mid-December the Sun was starting to set and there was beautiful diffuse light blanketing the narrow passageways outside the buildings. What an opportunity to get yet another 20 or so photos to add to my collection of Herr Robin!

As always, I'm surveying the area - I need to get in the perfect spot with great lighting, good background, perfect angle. Click, click, click. got some good ones I thought. Now to move around, "work the scene." Ahhh, here's a nice angle to capture a different perspective of Herr Robin and fired off a few shots. As usual, I continued to survey the scene. Then I saw it, I mean them. Two young lovers with beautiful back light cascading down the background. They were obvious to everyone passing by them. The world had stopped for them and I knew that this would tell a great story. I mean, sometimes, you just know...

Within nanoseconds I adjusted my camera's settings and fired off three shots capturing some of my favorite photos of all time. I captured, but did not interrupt, their special moment. While the world seems to be going to Hell in a hand basket, here were two young lovers, innocent, and without a thought beyond that of each other just enjoying their moment in Munich.

These few photos somehow make me smile and give me hope, make me forget for a brief moment of all the bad "stuff" in the world.

As four guys once said "All you need is Love."

Until next time, be safe, be kind and hopefully someone looks at you in that very special way.