As an introvert, the thought of street photography, would normally send a shiver down my spine. The thought of asking people to take a photo, or getting that stare from a person when taking a photo can be scary. Here are a few of my tips Have learnt from getting comfortable with street photography.
Blend in, but don’t hide.
One of the most important things I have learnt is to blend in. I have known a lot of people when starting Street Photography will hide, and try not to be noticed, which can make you look more conspicuous. Just take the image, if you get noticed and catch a smile or that look, it can really change an image. Be natural and don’t worry what people will think.
Get your settings right before you shoot.
When taking images on the street, you are often trying to catch a moment in time, and a person isn’t going to stand there while you mess with your camera to get the right settings. I often shoot in aperture priority at f8-f11 at ISO 200-400 depending on the light, but when I am walking about, I very rarely change this, unless I am looking for a specific effect such as motion blur or a blurred background. I also use a 25mm fixed prime, so I don’t have to worry about zooming.
I’ll guarantee that once you get the right settings down, you’ll uses them all the time, and it will make taking that shot easier.
Image quality isn’t everything.
On the street you are trying to capture a small moment in time, so spending time to get the right composition, exposure, could mean that you miss that shot. When I shoot I try to tell a story, over getting the right composition. As you shoot more, you will naturally learnt how to get that composition right without thinking about it.
Take your camera everywhere.
One of the aspects of street photography, that fascinates me, is that when I go out, I don’t know what Im going to shoot. Having that camera on you when that special moment happens is the key, but you don’t know when that is going to happen. You can predict a beautiful sunset, but catching that image of that fascinating person walking past, is unpredictable, so being prepared for that moment is the key.
I am aware that some people hate having their photo taken, so if people object then don’t be scared to strike up a conversation. Have a chat, show the person the image, and if they want you to delete, so say thank you and delete. I’m not that precious about my images. I won’t take images of certain people as well, for example, I won’t take images of homeless people, unless they are happy for me to do so, and if you do, buy them a brew or have a chat, don’t judge!
Just do it.
We as humans, tend to worry what others think, which often will stop us doing what the stuff we enjoy. Learn to ignore the fear and you’ll find that you might enjoy it. Get out there and try it, at least once. How do you know if you haven’t tried it?
I hope this helps with your street photography, it would be great for you to share your images, so why not hit me up on instagram?