Can You Pick What's Wrong With This Image? by David McMahon

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Can You Pick What's Wrong With This Image? by 

I won’t tell you what’s wrong with it just yet, but I’ll tell you the story behind this image. It was shot on a Calcutta (Kolkata) street during a brief visit to India in October 2006.

You’ll notice that I’ve focused on the air vent inside the car, as well as the wing mirror. There’s a specific reason for that, as well as the fact that the man with the newspaper is not in the sharpest focus.

Have you picked it yet? If not, I’ll reveal that the man is not a real human being – he is a roadside mannequin! The newspaper, however, is real. It is a Kolkata-based paper called “The Telegraph” and I’m guessing someone puts a fresh edition in the mannequin’s hands every day!

I do not crop, enhance or post-edit my images in any way. Shot with a Pentax K100D, using a Sigma 18-125mm lens. F6.7, 1/45 sec, ISO 400, focal length 50mm.

Featured in STATUES AND SUCH, September 2010.

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calcutta, david mcmahon, india, kolkata, mannequin, newspaper, the telegraph

Walkley Award-nominated journalist, novelist and wedding photographer at

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  • Lesliebc
    Lesliebcalmost 4 years ago

    Um, I don’t think the man is real…but rather a statue advertising something.

  • He turns into a real human being after midnight!

    – David McMahon

  • Lesliebc
    Lesliebcalmost 4 years ago

    LOL – I just read your side bar!

  • I didn’t think of checking to see if it was linked to advertising of any kind.

    – David McMahon

  • Shubd
    Shubdalmost 4 years ago

    Neat way of advertising !
    Though you haven’t mentioned why you focussed on the air vent and the wing mirror . Is it to show that we drive on the ‘other’ side in India ?! :)

    Trust you to come up with an unusual and interesting capture David!

  • Just a whim, Shubha – I didn’t want the figure in sharp focus! Glad you like the unusual subject!

    – David McMahon

  • linaji
  • Submitting it now, Linaji!

    – David McMahon

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