On a brisk October Friday, there’s about a dozen people at Sara D. Roosevelt Park in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Photographer Jamel Shabazz scans the scene and two Latina nannies tending to toddlers on swings catch his eye. On the surface, they are unremarkable, just a couple of the many women of color caring for the city’s white children at parks at this very moment. But Shabazz sees them. The nannies are sisters and nearly identical.

Presenting the Canon around his neck, he asks if he can take their picture. They’re reluctant, so Shabazz produces a folio of his photographs, neatly organized in plastic sleeves.

“I love shooting brothers and sisters,” he tells them, and starts flipping through images of smiling siblings and families from across the city. The women giggle in tandem but decline.

Still upbeat, he thanks them for their time, and wishes them good day.

“I knew right away they weren’t feeling it,” Shabazz tells me. “But you know I had to ask.”

It would have been a classic Shabazz image: A group shot of people who many wouldn’t give a second glance, warmth spilling over onto a lived-in street.