Friday, May 02, 2008

"Mama,Why Is The Policeman Taking My Picture?"

Scene of The Crime

Here is a narrative that is typical of the treatment that street artists in St. Augustine receive.


"Well,out of the clear blue they came up to me Thursday, April 3 in the middle of doing a portrait of a 6 year old birthday boy tourist grandson at the corner of Charlotte and Hypolita to interrupt the rapport I had going with this youngster and issued me a citation. No less than two police cars and three policemen stayed for 20 minutes while the boy and his visiting grandparents watched. They said I could be arrested if I set up again. They took a picture of my easel. One of the shopkeepers thought there must have been a major accident. It was embarrassing and humiliating and I kept apologizing to my clients for the unpleasant experience on their vacation. They had returned from a previous trip two years ago when I had done another sibling to have this one done for his birthday. I take a lot of pride to give my portrait sitter a pleasant experience during the portrait session and it was upsetting that the police were so disruptive to this with no regard for the impact on the tourists. What a great birthday memory for this family to bring back to Ohio! Other tourists going down the street on the other side called out: Do you have time for another one?"I called out: "Looks like NOT!", pointing to the police officers.Quite a shock to the peace and community feeling that's built up over two years on that corner with the local businesses benefiting as I often sent people to the surrounding shops and restaurants."
Nancy Christensen

3 comments:

  1. Karl The Rottweiler04 May, 2008

    Suvo and his attorney Tom Cushman will be in Judge Patty Cristianson's courtroom at 9am on <5-13>. He is charged with "offering artwork for sale" in the Plaza.For this he spent the night in jail and risks a fine of 300 dollars. I was put up at another artist's home until my master Suvo was released.It was OK, I guess. The food that night was probably better than what Suvo got at the St. John's County jail.

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  2. KARL you hang tough!
    There are plenty of humans who love you and your "partner in crime" ...LOL...
    You & your master will always be in our thoughts!
    Make sure you give T. Cushman a big ole doggie kiss for taking care of SUVO!

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