No Excuses – Street Photography 101

Another huge obstacle you will face as a street photographer (and a general photographer) is that at times you are not going to feel a lack of inspiration to go out and take photos and let your camera collect dust on your shelf. Although it can be healthy to put down your camera at times and not to feel compelled to take images, I would say it is very detrimental to your photography if you go for around a month without taking any images.

Street photography is all about capturing the beauty in the mundane, which is every-day life. The ability to take a slice of life and capture it in an image. By not taking photographs for an extended period of time, you almost lose a part of yourself. I consider my camera an extension of my body, a 6th sense in which I am able to connect and interact with the world. It is as important as an appendage to my body as my arms or my eyes.

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Skywalker, San Francisco.

Imagine not using your arms for an entire month. Just visualize them losing strength and muscle as well as the ability to make precise movements. And after a month of not using your arms, they may feel foreign and unknown to you. But you soon realize how much you have been missing out in life without them; the inability to write, the inability to embrace others, and the inability to itch your face at will. Suddenly a surge of empowerment rushes through your body, and you swear to yourself that you will never live without your arms again.

Photography is very much the same thing. If you quit taking photographs and using your camera for a month, it might feel awkward and foreign to you. You try taking photos again, but they lose that precision and touch that you used to have. But once you start taking photos again and get in the groove, you realize how much you have been missing out on life. Those little slices of life that you were unable to capture such as the man waiting at the bus stop, the woman walking with her child, or the two elderly men playing chess in the park. Suddenly a huge sense of inspiration rushes through your body and you vow to yourself that you will never live without your camera again.

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Wine By the Seine, Paris

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  • material lives

    Beautiful, Eric! Love the opening image. I like thinking about the camera as an extension of the arm, a 6th (or 7th) sense. I do feel naked when I don’t have my camera with me, but I think people who don’t photograph don’t always understand why I love to have it out and snapping.

    • http://www.erickimphotography.com Eric Kim

      I don’t think anyone else could have put it as eloquently as you did Cydney :)

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  • JM

    As always, no reply from the culprits…

  • http://erickimphotography.com/blog Eric Kim

    Dear Severin,

    Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment on my blog – I have always been a fan of your photographs and your eye for street photography.

    When it comes to ‘spamming street photography’ – what do you exactly mean? That I post too many articles on my blog, or that the articles I post aren’t helpful? I try to make my blog posts as helpful as I can, so would like some clarification on this point.

    I also still have a lot to learn in street photography myself – and still working on becoming on taking more meaningful photographs. But what about my photographs don’t you like in particular? Would love to hear feedback so I can better improve.

    Cheers,
    Eric