In Japan, the people are the exception. They are very patient and well mannered on the surface (and deeper), but occasionally someone (that's me folks) over steps the invisible line of too much. This is one of the few occasions I have witnessed from my own actions or those of others where a Japanese person showed their ire, if briefly. The thing that pushed it was my overt framing of the image, the main problem of using longer lenses in confined spaces. I am not that person. A photo can rarely do harm, but the clumsy taking of one can. I fall squarely in the camp of "do no harm" and would never publish an intimate image like this in a well trod forum or against someones wishes. The not for profit street genre allows me to share an image of an unknown person with other unknown people as long as the audience is reasonable and aware, as street photographers have done for years. It's a reality that many of the most famous people in street photo images are not even be aware their photo was taken.
Now I have confessed my rudeness, I will move onto the image as it is one of my guilty favourites.
The colour image works for me. The colours are balanced and avoid the multi dimensional look that colour can introduce by having the strongest (and harmonious) colour on the same plane as the main subject. The warm skin tones, separated by the neutral olive sweater create a pleasant and balanced shape and the overall warmth of the image makes it look relaxed and gentle.
The mono image is deeper. The girls face dominates, forcing a more emotional response. The colder feel introduced by the untoned, grey tones and the dropping off of the background due to the bulk of the colours turning light grey, I feel, gives the image a sadder, more contemplative feel than the warmer colour image. Another phenomenon of converting to mono is the image looks sharper. This often happens when colours are turned to tones and textures. Even thought the black and white image is stronger-more direct, I feel drawn to the harmonious colours of the other image, or maybe that's the guilt talking.