comment: I see this as a wonderful example of symbolic street: "The Urban Angel" over large and looming, looking down on a squalid urban scape; It's gaze points to a person living on the street for whom this project, I assume, has been initiated and from whom it is obviously disconnected; the shot reads very well "benevolent look down, leads to a hopeful look up, leading to the symbol for the state (Canadian flag)". I also love the contrast between the smoothness of the banner and the structure of the wall of the building. One drawback of this shot is that it is too small... I can imagine myself getting goose bumps looking at a large print of it hanging on a gallery wall, but this size here does not play to the strength of this wonderful image.
..just one split second glance and I know this is Toronto ---- even when U.S. film makers used to try to disguise To in movies ...... you could always spot it ............of course living in Toronto probably helps in the recognition dept.
I totally agree with Mary & Eric about the selective colouring. The shot itself is a very well seen juxtaposition (even though I don't really like this word) of the advertising poster and the harsh reality of the people on the street. The rising steam even enhances the whole message even more, making it a great shot - if it were not for the selective colouring. I don't think you'd need it to convey the message of this particular shot, I guess it would work both in pure colour or in pure b&w...
I think it's great! In my opinion the message comes across even stronger now - you've got the angel ad standing out and the people contrasting that image in slightly muted colours due to the steam rising up - great contrast to me. Also the muted area achieved by the steam kind of "highlights" the spot where those poor people are standing, so the eye is instantly drawn there. Plus there aren't a lot of colours anyways, all those brown hues are fine, not too much or confusing at all.
To me it's great just the way you discovered and shot it!
comment: The angel watching over the dirty street and poor people is great. A well spotted and captured moment. Your image doesn't need any kind of edit, it would be great in color or in b/w. Selective color is a photo manipulation, because you intervene in post-production enhancing certain details and forcing the attention on them. This is not usually accepted in street photography where the amount of edit should be minimal, and it should be the composition alone to hold the eye's interest. I like the composition of this image very much, and I'd love it fully in color
If you've had any unexplained rejects from Street groups, the reason must be the selective coloring that you did, because otherwise it's a fine picture. It's too strong an effect to go well with the "straight photography" ideal that Street people tend to stick to, in one way or another. If you want a more objective argument than "Nobody likes it in Street", it's rather patronizing to the viewer - "Hello! You should look at this... and this... this!" It turns what could be a voyage of discovery into a securely signposted Sunday walk. If you want to make the lady and the angel stand out more without using selective coloring, you could consider the digital equivalent of dodging and burning, and perhaps a brush with contrast or (slight) saturation if you use Lightroom or Photoshop. There's a fairly great distance to the human subject, so you're probably right to put it in the City Life gallery, but if I'd see it in a Street exhibition or photo book (without the selective coloring that is), I wouldn't mind at all though, it has a Street mood and vibe. There's a grandness about it that I like, which contrasts with the shabbiness of the scene and probably the woman.
I love it as it's now. The story of the picture has become much more subtle, the connection between the angel poster and the building is restored (it seemed to hover mid-air first), and the colors are in balance too, with the bluish grey of the angel complementing the warm brown hues of the buildings.