More and more people are showing interest in street photography. Street photography indeed seems fun, exciting and challenging. But then, it is not as simple as you may think it is. Somebody new to this form of photography will initially feel a certain fear – fear of photographing people.
If you are just getting started in street photography and feel nervous about taking candid shots of the people you see then that is normal. What you need to do is overcome that fear and apply techniques to get the pictures you want without being too intrusive.
To Ask Permission or Not To?
In street photography, you will be taking shots of random people candidly. Sometimes you will feel the need to ask permission but oftentimes you will just take the snap shot without their knowledge. While it can be some sort of privacy invasion, you can take away the guilt of taking shots if you try to assess if the picture will hurt or offend that person.
Some street photographers opt to determine first how the person will react before he takes the shot. If you think the person will get mad once he noticed you photographing him, then don’t take the shot. The best way to get away with being caught red-handed is by smiling and bowing your head to show positivity and respect. If need be, you can give an explanation on why you photographed that person or why you want him/her as a subject. It can be as simple as you like the clothes, hat, hair or the like.
Choosing where to shoot?
Now, where can you find interesting subjects to shoot? Street photography doesn’t mean you have to limit yourself in photographing only in the streets. You can take pictures in different public places. You can go to a popular tourist destination like a zoo or a park then look for interesting individuals to photographer. You need to keep an eye for once-in-a-lifetime, fleeting moments that are worth photographing. Even Paul Fuller Photographer is always on alert when covering weddings to avoid missing precious moments.
Here are some tips to help you produce wonderful street pictures.
- Pay particular attention to people’s expressions and mood. See how they act and react to what’s happening around them.
- Bring a small camera like a reliable point and shoot camera or a light weight mirrorless. DSLR cameras are quite big and not really that suitable for street photography unless you have a reliable camera bag and telephoto lens.
- Go to a crowded and appear like a tourist. People will think you are shooting the views or scenes you see though in reality you are photographing the people there.
- Smile and be nice. A smile, nod and bow are gestures that show courtesy and respect. The more friendly you look, the more
- Close up shots that show real emotions and expressions of people are great to capture. For DSLR users, a telephoto lens is awesome to use. You can take shots from a distance by just zooming in and the image will still appear sharp. You will also remain unnoticed by your subject.
- Try different angles and practice constantly. Experiment with how your images will appear when shot diagonally or when you go down on your knee for a shot. You can check out Martin Beddall Photography website to get ideas on what unique angles are best in getting awesome images.
There’s so much more to learn about street photography. If you’re really serious about it, then continuously study and practice until you master it.