Photographer Harassed by Woman in Park

Photographer Harassed by Woman in Park

A family photographer who was in the middle of photographing young children in a public park was verbally harassed by a woman who was upset that the photographer was using the park for photo sessions earlier this week.

In the NSFW video, the woman, after a profanity-laced rant toward Nickolette Mottola, the photographer, can be heard screaming, “This is not your studio! This is a park for kids and children and people; this is not a place for you to conduct your business!” She was extremely upset by the benign family photo session taking place. The children — whom Mottola was photographing — can be heard crying in the background, presumably upset by the tantrum-throwing woman.

This incident certainly isn’t the first time a photographer has had a run-in with an angry person over photos being taken in a public space and highlights a disturbing mindset by some that photography is somehow a public nuisance. 

Reportedly, the woman seen in the video owns a home located against the park in question and has complained publicly regarding the activities that are allowed to take place in the park by the local parks department. After Mottola posted the video of the incident on Facebook, another photographer came forward in the video’s comments explaining that the week before, she and her clients had been sprayed by the same woman with a pressure washer from the woman’s backyard. The photographer said she’d obtained a permit from the parks department, which cost $12, and that the woman called the police on the photographer. The woman was angered when the police refused to do anything because the photographer had obtained the proper permitting to conduct professional business within the park. Mottola was taking photos of a friend’s children, and not conducting professional business.

Should Photographers Be Considered a Public Nuisance?

Far too often photography is lumped into park or public space rules along with other seemingly nefarious activities like skateboarding, graffiti, and drug use. Visit enough parks, and you’ll run across a “park rules” sign stating “no photography” along with the activities listed above.

Obviously, the reaction of the woman in the video above is an overreaction, but does the public really have reason to view photographers in such a negative light in regards to conducting photo sessions in public spaces, particularly if the photographer has obtained proper permission and permitting? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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145 Comments

Felix Wu's picture

That women must be mentally sick and must have had a difficult life.

Felix Wu's picture

Don’t take it too literally. All I am saying is that a normal person does not behave that way. There’s definitely something wrong with her though, maybe it’s her childhood or her marriage she seems to have a lot of grudge against others and acted like a two year old screaming in public space....probably 10 times more annoying than any negative impact anyone had caused at the park.

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Read other reports to supplement our understanding here, such as:

https ://coralspringstalk. com/neighbor-angered-with-residents-taking-family-photos-in-public-park-21238

Yelling like that in public is a social dysfunction, worthy of sub-clinical categorization of "... mentally sick and must have had a difficult life ...", no one is making a clinical diagnosis, only assessing the situation for how to respond, and perhaps conclude that reason is not a tool to deal with the yelling person.
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Edward Blake's picture

Given your own manifest issues of anger and irrationality, and the fact you accused someone else of being a domestic violence offender (this person being someone who was trying to de-escalate your behaviour), perhaps you should stfu.

Edward Blake's picture

That's the spirit, Jack. As always, you believe the defect lies with EVERYONE else on the planet. You couldn't possible have any issues at all.

I still have strong suspicions that you are a serial rapist, or inclined in that direction - only being restrained by the possibility of prosecution.

Yeah, I'm gonna have to go with full blown crazy.

Bah c'mon mentally sick? People sometimes just hit a breaking point. If someone looked at you the last time and said "felix is sick and mentally unstable because of a bad childhood" from a 10 second interaction that might be a bit much. Or perhaps you're projecting your own bad relationships and bad childhood on to this woman? :)

Felix Wu's picture

Do you yell out loud in front of children? Do you water spray people in the park? If you do I suggest you call help because there’s definitely something sick about this behaviour.

Edward Blake's picture

It is pertinent to note that norms of behavior on the internet are bleeding through to real life.

I don't think this is true at all. People have always been this way.

We just see more of it now when everyone carries around a photo/video device.

Edward Blake's picture

Possibly; however, the normative frame is shifting.

Reginald Walton's picture

Maybe she's doing something illegal in the park and is afraid that it will be captured on camera.

Jason Lorette's picture

wow...just...wow.

David Moore's picture

I' upset that skateboarding is lumped in with drug use. lol

michaeljin's picture

I was just going to comment on this. WTH?

Benjamin Nations's picture

Serious?! What's up with that?

Rick Nash's picture

The NIMBY woman is annoyed because the public park has become a photographer's destination of an outdoor studio for more than the odd photoshoot. The NIMBY neighbor is perturbed because the park is no longer simply a place for recreation but for photographers to conduct their business in.
Now if someone was taking photos with a smartphone, its okay, because it isnt a "camera".
Best to do the photoshoot discreetly so as not to trigger the snowflake NIMBY neighbor.

Bert McLendon's picture

I don't think people need to be recreating in this park. If she was this upset about someone taking pictures, imagine if they were recreating? HOLY HELL! =P

Rick Nash's picture

Ok ok i should proofread before posting.

Jordan McChesney's picture

“You don’t care about anyone but your own godd*mned self”, she said completely unironically in a park full of children.

I’ll never understand why so many people get annoyed at photographers who aren’t being intrusive. Would she have responded the same if it was a yoga class? A painting workshop? A Sunday afternoon improv class in the park?

I hope she’s able to get whatever’s up her butt surgically removed.

Spy Black's picture

...then again, a fresh set of batteries might have her enjoying what's up her butt and put her in a better mood...

Tim Ericsson's picture

Always works for me!

Damn... bro... you's a savage. Stop it, its offensive to the other females man. LOL.

Mr Hogwallop's picture

Eventually people do get annoyed. A couple years ago in Santa Monica there were so many Tai Chi, Yoga, Boot Camp, Stair climbing, clown college, etc classes going on the parks were full of instructors using public facilities for their classes running classes all day long.The city cracked down to limit the biz in the park . To be honest Improv classes should be banned everywhere. And Mimes.

Mentally troubled?

Henry Louey's picture

Maybe she is, maybe she isn't, who knows? #BeBest

Crystal Johnson's picture

No, photographers should not be considered a nuisance in public locations where photography is allowed. They were not doing anything illegal, and had the proper permits needed to shoot there. She doesn't own the park, and has no right to shoo them away from there. If she wanted peace and quite near nature she should move into the mountains.

Jordan McChesney's picture

The number of permits is irrelevant if it’s legal and they aren’t harassing anyone. She can be annoyed about it, but it doesn’t make it right to harass the photographers.

It would be like flipping out because “you have a picnic here every weekend”.

Crystal Johnson's picture

Nonsense! Public parks are for public usage regardless if there is a professional photoshoot or not. Parks that are locally controlled by the city need funds to maintain said park. Parties, and permits are part of that funding. This isn't some freaking HOA blocked park, it's open for anyone not just that neighborhood. She's probably harassed people just doing free shoots there as well.

This woman is a nut case, and a drunkard(with a DUI mind you). She's harassed not just photographers, but parents at kids parties(who PAID to host a party there) and other park goers for no reason She's gone to the city about this park numerous times for various different issues, and yet they aren't doing anything because no one is violating their laws, and is doing everything by the book. It's HER, not everyone else, and no they aren't pushing permits like it's crack. If you watch the video there is next to no one there.

The fact is this woman is a total cunt.Yelling at pregnant women, cursing in front of kids, making them cry, being belligerent and acting like she has legal ground to harass people.. NOPE! She has no damn right. The neighborhood is blocked by a line of trees outside their fences that face the park.So her issues of privacy or whatever bullshit she's spewing are negated. She has gone out of her way to harass people, spray them with water, and invade what they've paid for.

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