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Will I live?

By paulbroad
Been having a bit of a lay off as some will realise. Busy at home amongst other things so few comments lately. However, here's another to have a go at.

Shot in the street in Whitby whilst my better half was shopping. I stand outside clothes shops if possible!

Shot using Liveview on the 7D. No noise to speak of as fairly close to her. Camera round neck but held sideways on at mid chest level so that I could see the LCD. No one seems to notice.

EOS 7D. Autofocus. Aperture priority f3.5. 105mm Sigma EX DG Macro. IS on. ISO 200. 1/400 @ f3.5. Light quite low.


Tags: Woman Smoke Cigarette Portraits and people

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


kel55 6 8 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2014 9:08AM
Interesting shot and title fits so well , I would like to take more street shots but always feels a bit awkward , great advice on your sneaky technique , simple but clever ,


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NDODS 7 5.1k 125 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2014 9:09AM
Great covert imagery. Love the subject, the smoke trails wonderfully defined against the black background subject.

Regards Nathan GrinGrinGrin
cats_123 Plus
14 4.8k 28 Northern Ireland
7 Apr 2014 9:58AM
excellent focsuing and subject matter Smile
Sooty_1 8 1.5k 221 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2014 12:00PM
If only the chap with the glasses hadn't been there!
The woman's expression is good, she's sharp, and apart from wishing the crop was a little wider, I like the composition. Without the chap behind, she would be sharp against a muted background, and the image would be much stronger. I'd like to see all of her hand.

Unfortunately, I don't think a 105 mm lens is ideal for street shooting, because you often need a decent distance to shoot, and you get a lot of stuff in the way, unless you are only after close cropped head shots. A shorter focal length is better, and you can always crop from a wider view.
Most street shooters use a 35/50, or similar, but that does involve getting a bit closer.

I must admit, I'm not a fan of being sneaky, as when you are found out, people tend to react adversely. At least if you're open about it, there is no suggestion of underhandedness.

paulbroad 10 123 1249 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2014 2:34PM
I think, in about 30 years of shooting sneaky stuff, I 've been rumbled twice. Once caused an arguement, one a laugh. The thing is, it's not illegal in this country, UK, and you shouldn't get spotted if you are careful. It only becomes a problem on private priperty or if you cause an affray. In the UK, you do not own the copyright of your own features. An interesting one.

What is private property can be an issue in a case where, say, the local council owns the area. I would argue that I am, thus, a part owner! I pay my tax.

I normally use even longer lenses for street shooting. Why not? Distance is even better for not getting spotted and even if they see you, they have no idea you are using a long kens just on them, they think they are part of a much wider vista. You also have narrow depth of field on your side.

I do use wider angle in crowds at markets, but then use the bridge camera with all sounds turned off. No noise, no indication you have shot, even from a couple of feet.

For me, most good street shots tend to be frame filling shots of heads or a few heads. Just what I like to see.

Looking at her expression, she maybe wishing the chap wasn't there, too. He was with her.

It's all about a bit of fun and common sense, I think. I use street photography to pass my time as my wife shops.

paulbroad 10 123 1249 United Kingdom
7 Apr 2014 6:47PM
The thing is, if you are not sneaky, the shot is not a candid, and that is an accepted area of photography.

dudler Plus
14 706 1351 England
7 Apr 2014 6:59PM
I think there's a distinction between a candid and a sneaky picture. This is not a sneaky shot! "Sneaky" would be aiming to get a shot that is unkindly unrepresentative of the person (scope to discuss, of course - but that's my starter for ten).

The lesson on technique is really useful, and I am sure that new togs wil lbenefit both from Paul's initial comments, and hte discussion above. Live view has brought back the viewing options that waist level finders used to give - for low (or abouve the head) shooting, and for going sideways, as Paul has.

This is hard to fault, really. I quite like the "echoing" faces in the background, though I suppose, ideally, the man woudl be slightly further forwards to (almost) even out the spacing!

I'd love to see just a fraction more space at the bottom, to include the lady's thumb.

Otherwise, it's jsut about perfect: and any way round, I wish I'd taken it!
Jestertheclown 9 7.7k 252 England
7 Apr 2014 9:09PM
Hi Paul,
I like it.
An 8x10 crop removes that grey bit on the RHS and with a little tweaking, also takes out the dark area on the LHS.
Just an idea.

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