The Art of Learning Street Photography

San Mateo, 2014

San Mateo, 2014

I just re-read an excellent book titled: “The Art of Learning” by Josh Waitzkin. If you’ve ever watched the film “Searching for Bobby Fischer” (the movie about the kid chess prodigy)— that movie was based on Josh Waitzkin’s life.

The Art of Learning” is a rare book in the sense that he became world champion not only in chess, but also later in competitive Tai Chi “push hands”. In the book, Josh breaks down how he was able to learn at an incredible pace, how he was able to push his own creative boundaries, and how he achieved excellence at a master-level.

For this article I want to break down some lessons that I’ve personally learned— which can help you in your street photography or life in general. Let’s go:

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Streettogs Academy No. 10

SA 10 Dates

I’ve always believed that good work will stand out on its own and it will spread. That is pretty much what happened in our assignment No. 9. given by Harry Fodor. Everyone gave out great black and white work which in turn gave a bit of limelight to the group attracting new members.

Streettogs Academy is pretty much close to 3,000 members now. With that in mind, there are new policies and guidelines implemented so that everyone will be guided on how to interact and post in the group. As always, I am in deep gratitude for everyone’s participation in the group and its assignments.

So let’s jump straight into the next assignment Editor’s choice Chilun Leung gave us!

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Measure Your Life as a Photographer in Decades, Not Years


The other night here in Chicago, I woke up in the middle of the night. I was tossing and turning (put on the heater too hot at night).

In a state of being half-asleep, I started to have all of these random ideas for blog posts. One of them was: “measure your life as a photographer in decades, not years.”

I recently got 164 rolls of Kodak Portra 400 developed after a year of shooting (and not looking at any of the images). I would have to say— I was so impatient towards the end. I wanted to see my images, and I started to get frustrated. There have been many times when I’m frustrated waiting for my film to get developed that I think of just switching all of my work to digital— to get that sweet, blissful instant gratification.

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How it Feels to Shoot Street Photography 24 Hours Straight

South Korea. March 2015.

South Korea. March 2015.

This is a guest post by Josh White, a street photographer based in Seoul, Korea.

Josh: Yesterday (and sort of the day before) I took part in the 24 Hour Project. For those of you that don’t know, it is a street photography initiative that involves photographers worldwide.

Basically, how it works, is you take one photo per hour for 24 hours in your given city (cities in my case). So, from 00:00 on Saturday, March 21st, until 11:59 I was to stay awake and take and post one photo per hour. By the time 00:00 rolled around I felt more like #fml than #24hourproject.

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Play the Cards You Are Dealt in Life and Photography

Los Angeles, 2014

Los Angeles, 2014

I have been re-reading a lot of stoic philosophy recently, especially “Letters from a Stoic” and “On the Shortness of Life” by Seneca, and “The Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius.

One of the biggest things that I have re-learned is that for true happiness, we should focus on appreciating what we currently have, rather than what we don’t have. Seneca says the following:

“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing. The greatest blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach. A wise man is content with his lot, whatever it may be, without wishing for what he has not.”

By focusing on making the best of what we have in life is the key to happiness.

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What I Learned Processing 164 Rolls of Film After Waiting a Year


When I dropped off 164 rolls of Kodak Portra 400 at Costco

I recently stopped into the Costco in Mountain View, California with 164 rolls of Kodak Portra 400. You should’ve seen the look of the staff— it was a look of confusion, awe, and amazement.

They were surprised that all that film I brought in was all shot by me. They were also partly worried that they would have to process all of it. I reassured them by telling them to take their time— I wasn’t in a rush. After all, I had been sitting on my film and letting them “marinate” for nearly a full year.

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Streettogs Academy No. 9 Results and Analysis


And so the cycle continues for Streettogs Academy! Our assignment this time round is deceptively simple. This assignment would actually go down as the assignment with the most interaction (so far). Many comments were shared and there were a number of photos that got the attention of many members of the group. If you look closely, the photos that got selected and got the most interest are the ones that had the simple basic requirement of a good image: A strong visual hook. So let’s see all of them.

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