When I asked Dmitri Kasterine to what extent capturing his sitters off guard was a deliberate strategy, he explained that his main aim was to ‘avoid the conventional’ and prevent the subject from ‘putting on the polite face.’ This is as difficult as it sounds. Apart from the fact that, as he puts it, ‘one is inclined to be fascinated’ when photographing the great and the good, there may be an army of minders and assistants to negotiate, or simply a shortage of time. Luck or serendipity may be crucial.

Citation: Joe Staines, Black and White Magazine