Street photography is a unique type of photography and will require a slightly different technique, read on to find out more.
Street photography can be a very fun and productive hobby. Described as the art of taking ‘real life’ pictures in public places, street photography allows you to capture people and places in a natural light and presence.
However, if you are considering taking up street photography, either purely as a hobby or for work purposes, there are a few things that you will need to consider.
The first important note is to be friendly and relaxed while you are taking street photography – i.e. try wherever possible to participate in the activity that you are trying to capture. By doing this, you can blend into the background and people usually won’t mind that you are taking their photograph.
It is also very important to note that it is illegal to take pictures of other people without first obtaining their consent in some countries, so make sure that you know about any laws that apply to your location before you start to take your street photography.
Also bear in mind that you should not take street photography of children without first asking their parents for permission. In a number of cases, you may also need a ‘model release’ before you can publish or sell a photograph of another person – so don’t be tempted to sell your photographs without checking whether or not this is the case.
However, if you have already taken on board the above tips, it’s time for the fun part – buying the camera! Ideally, you will need a camera with a wide-angle lens and a telephoto lens (to get great pictures even when you are a long way away from your subject)in order to get the best possible street photography shots.
Manual digital cameras can be a great place to start – they are cheap to use as you do not need to get physical films printed and the shots that you capture can be just as clear as cameras that use physical film cartridges. Many different types of digital camera are available on the market, at very reasonable prices, so take the time to research your camera options carefully before you buy one.
When you are ready to start taking your street photography – focus your camera, aim and start shooting – there is no need to use a viewfinder or screen if you don’t want to – some of the best street photography shots can be taken without doing this.
You should expect to get photos of varying quality – but the more photographs you take, the more chances you will have of producing some really great shots! Walk around your intended location with your camera and observe the photographic opportunities that are occurring around you.
Be prepared for people's reactions – if you get a feeling that they are not comfortable being photographed, move onto another subject quickly i.e. do not intrude on another persons’ private space – you wouldn’t like someone doing that to you!
Most of all, have fun and be creative with your street photography.