Street photography is one of the most effective ways to capture all aspects of a city. You can capture the atmosphere, the people and the interactions in an area by getting right into the action.
It’s a little tricky but the end result is worth it, as not only will you capture photos, but stories.
Street photography requires social skills as much as photographic skills. These tips will help you start.
1. Locals are always happy to help you out.
Locals may be hostile or apprehensive when taking their pictures. But who could blame them when a stranger is shoving the camera right in their faces?
Many people believe that you must have more social skills in order to take beautiful street photographs. They may not be entirely wrong.
Conversations are the best way to gain people’s trust. Demonstrate that you are genuinely interested to talk with them. Many photographers will even put their cameras away during the first couple of minutes. This helps to keep them calm and relaxed.
2. Always keep your camera ready.
Even after you’ve done some shots, don’t tuck your camera away. When they are aware that the camera is there, most people do not act as naturally. Body postures become rigid and smiles are unnatural. After a long talk, take a few pictures, but always keep your camera close by.
People usually relax after a session, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to pack up your camera. When your subject thinks the session is over, they may act more naturally. This will result in more genuine and natural expressions.
3. Tell stories and not just things
Take pictures of people, places, and things around you, but don’t forget to tell a story.
Take pictures of people in a hurry at the store, for instance, or of children laughing with friends while playing make-shift dolls. The best stories are usually told through expressions, movements, and interactions.
4. Do not chimp
Chimping is the act of checking photos after they have been taken. You don’t want to miss a moment because you are too busy looking at your LDR screen. If you are concentrating on your screen, you may miss a golden opportunity.
You can always sort out your photos later.