4 Killer Steps to Level Up Your Street Photography

By: Ana Margarita Olar | Fotograpiya.com

Street photography is very challenging regardless if it is a hobby or a profession. Things on the street range from subtle to extreme conditions.

There are unlimited subjects and ideas to choose from. Here are some more intricate steps to level up your street photography techniques:

Conquer fear of people.

So you’ve started to shoot people from a distance. But in street photography, you really want to capture emotions and state of human conditions; you need to move a little closer.

At first, it is really awkward to approach a total stranger. To overcome your fear, you need to dig deep within yourself.

What exactly are you afraid of? Being snubbed? Being shouted at? Having violent reactions from people?

To put things simply, there are two methods by which you can shoot a photo of someone? To say please or not to say please?

Saying please (asking for permission) can disrupt the candid moment but, you can also ask first and then ask the subject to continue with what he is doing, and then take the shot.

On the other hand, when people see that you are taking their photos, the common reaction will be: they will just ignore you, or they will ask why you took their photo.

You can: nod, smile, take a bow or be honest in explaining why you want to capture the moment. This will put your subject at ease and you can earn their trust.

Street Photography

Mind your camera, your lens, and your camera settings.

Always take your camera with you when you go out. You never can tell when a great photo op will appear in front of you. It’s very frustrating to see be in a place packed with action and drama and you have no gear to capture it all.

Also, learn to choose lens wisely. You’ll look creepy if your camera has that giant lens being pointed at anybody. For street photography choose a compact camera that’s smaller, discreet and lightweight.

You also need to check your camera settings so that it is ready to shoot at any moment. The easiest set up will be AV mode, selecting aperture and ISO manually.

If your camera has a shutter speed higher than 1/200th a second then it’s time to shoot.

Let go of your inhibitions.

Just like letting go of your fear of people, you also have to let go of your personal inhibitions. Loosen up a little. Overcome any hesitations by practicing more, shooting more, and going out more.

Familiarize yourself with a certain place so that you can anticipate when the action is likely to happen.

Look and wait for the moment.

As you familiarize yourself on a certain place, the subjects (people) will also be at ease with your presence.

An example of moments is: emotions, being lost in deep thought, etc. you can also look for contrasts that can catch the curiosity of your audience examples are: smiling children despite poor living conditions, a well-groomed man on an unkempt place, a sad face despite the luxury, etc.

These are just some simple but killer steps to upgrade you street photography techniques. What matters is that you continue shooting, and spend more time on the streets so you can take a good shot effortlessly.