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Interesting Street Photography Tips

Street photography is fun but it can also be challenging so to help you out, here are a few tips to turn you into a street photography pro.

| General Photography

The street environment with all of its peculiarities, sub-culture garnish and a certain amount of danger lurking here and there is a one-of-a-kind gallery waiting to be captured by photo enthusiasts.

For this reason, it has been the subject for numerous world-renowned photographers, but to enhance the beauty within this somewhat extreme setting, you can't just randomly take pictures of whatever happens to be in your way. The art of street photography demands knowledge in portraiture, close-ups, an adept eye for mini-narratives as well as the skill to assimilate with your environment but don't worry; here are a few tips from to help you get started on your street photography journey. 


Interesting Street Photography Tips: Street photography


Analogue Vs Digital 

Although using a Digital SLR is completely fine, an analogue camera can give you more artistic scope. The black & white tones you can capture with certain types of film, not to mention the film grain, will only add a certain romanticism to your shots. By working in black and white you'll also be able to enhance the textures of the streets around you and really make a feature out of older faces. Plus, you won't machine gun the shutter button as you only have a select number of frames to capture which means you may take more time to hunt out that perfect photo.  Also, depending on your camera choices, may actually make it easier to blend in so you can capture better candids. 

The Kodak Tri-X 400 black & white film will be a great choice if you're wondering what film to reach for and as for cameras, Yashica, the HOLGA series, Lomography Diana, Instant Mini 8 and Leicas are just a few of the popular brands out there. 

If you're a fully-fledged digital shooter, you can use your DSLR, compact or mirrorless camera and still capture some cracking street photography. Plus, digital cameras are convenient, quick to use and very responsive which can make it easier to capture that perfect shot when exploring the city with your camera. 

So you're not lost in the world of apertures and shutter speeds, have a go at shooting in P mode and see what you can capture. By using P instead of fully auto you'll still be able to adjust exposure compensation, ISO and flash which gives you a little more control over how the final image comes out.


Interesting Street Photography Tips: Street photography


Lens Choices  

28mm, 35mm and 50mm can all work well when out exploring the city streets. 28mm lenses are known for their ability to transport the viewer right into the photo but you will have to get rather close to people if portraits are your goal. 35mm is the closest focal length to what the human eye sees and a 50mm lens is great for portraits, particularly when your subject is a little further away from your lens. 


Interesting Street Photography Tips: Street photography


What To Take Photos Of?

While Googling the phrase 'street photography', you might have already noticed that some of the most popular subjects of street photographers are people. There are plenty of 'characters' out there who are well worth photographing as they all have a story to tell. If you'd prefer to capture something other than people, how about these for ideas: 

  • Graphical components of the surrounding architecture
  • Billboards that can change their meaning in different contexts
  • The 'rhythm' or mechanics of the city, including the cars and people during the rush hour
  • Angles - shoot from high up or low down
  • People eating in cafes, unaware of what's going on outside
  • Animals & wildlife 
  • Commonly found objects in uncommon places (camp-bed in an alleyway.)


Remember, despite whatever technical expertise one possess, street photography is more about capturing a narrative and feeling rather than getting something technically correct. Think vibes, rawness, honest documentation and the sense of drama and you're on the right track to street photography success. 

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