Dubai | June | 2011
Just thought of sharing some tips on street photography “dos and don’ts”. Everything that you read here is from my point of view and from my experience of extensive street photography.
There are millions of tips to share about shooting on streets, but let me round up some of the most important ones for now.
Thumb rule of street photography is “there is no rule”. In simple “Don’t worry what camera you use, just capture the moments.”
To begin with : For a beginner the biggest confusion lies in “setting up the settings” for each shot and in streets, its about capturing a moment instantaneously ,which can be easily missed while you struggle to set the controls. Once you know your camera in and out (with experience ofcourse!), settings are a matter of few scrolls here and there and takes just about a second or two. So for all the beginners out here, put your camera on auto mode and start shooting. Work on composition and perspectives while camera decides the settings.
This shot was taken during my initial days of street photography and on auto mode…intention was to capture the feel of “Back to Back” perspective of “a tourist” here for leisure vs “the worker” here for existence. if I had fumbled across to set the details on cam, I would have easily missed this sync of them facing each others back.
Ditch your Zoom lens : Zoom lenses are not really appropriate for street photography as they attract a lot of attention and makes people suspicious. Especially when you are shooting around in places like Middle East, it can sometimes be risky aswell. So better off stick to prime lenses or Wide angles and keep it simple.Also avoid your camera bag, as its better with some reduced weight during long walks.
Paint with light : Photography in general is all about lighting and it can be used at its best when on streets, where street serves as your studio and sun as your flash guns. Look for shadows and you may end with some cool looking shots.
Get Candid : If you are hesitant to approach people, go candid. Keep the settings of your camera at its optimum depending on the lighting conditions (or put it on aperture priority @ f8) and start clicking candidly without them noticing. You will have story telling pictures this way around as it captures their mood as it is. Here are few of my candid shots to illustrate…
As mentioned in beginning there a million tips that can be given for shooting on streets. These are just the few but very much most important ones. In the next blog you would read about perspectives and various angles of shooting.