Shooting Street Photography With a Flash in Hollywood

During my Los Angeles Street Photography Workshop, Rinzi Ruiz followed me around and recorded me shooting street photography with my Canon 5D, 24mm f/2.8, YN 560 Flash, and CSLR C-loop and Glidestrap.

I enjoyed the experience and this time aimed my flash aiming upwards from a low angle (while crouching down). As you can see through the video, a lot of people were very friendly (as long as I smiled and said “thank you” or that I liked something they were wearing). A few people objected and gave me weird looks (as you can see) but I am pleased with a few of the resulting images.

In addition, the workshop was a ton of fun, and you can see my previous footage talking about Day 1, Day 2, and the best street photographs my students took.

Also check out my upcoming street photography workshops in LA and San Francisco.

What do you think of this approach and the pictures I got? Let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below!

Upcoming Street Photography Workshops

If you want to conquer your fears and meet new peers, join me in Stockholm, Portland, San Francisco, Chicago, Toronto, NYC, Istanbul & More!

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  • http://twitter.com/85mm_ch Thomas Leuthard

    Looks good. Some of the shots a bit bright. But this happens, when they wear white. Some of them with a bit a low angle. Seems that nobody really cared and at daylight, you don’t really realize the flash.

    • http://twitter.com/ryca3505 ryan cabal

      I agree, truly diggin “The Bawse” photo. Feels like that guy was apart of the Italian mob…then after the video he seemed quite nice :]

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

      Thanks Thomas. Still have a lot to learn, but getting there ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/Bockett Ben Bockett

    I think it’s a great idea seeing someone do it live and how the viewer gets to see peoples reactions from behind the camera. It’s also helpful for newbies to see how certain situations are handled.

  • http://zenowatson.com/ Zeno Watson

    Great Eric. :)

    Keep up the fine work!

    Zeno

  • http://www.foggodyssey.com/ Anonymous

    maybe I’m the only one here but I disagree with this approach 100%. Actually lost a lot of respect for you man for doing this. Everyone can say how cool this is but Bruce Gilden isn’t that great for doing it either (even if he’s famous for it). It’s total New Yorker attitude in a way when he does it.

    I seen a guy from NY doing this in India and I was floored by it. I flat asked him what the hell he was thinking and he went on to give me the Bruce story. I didn’t care because the reactions from the people on the streets was all I needed to know. Imagine if 5 people a day came up to you and did this what the perception would towards ALL photographers.

    It’s your website, you show, so can’t argue you have the right to post it and do it but as a subscriber I really did lose any interest in your work after seeing this. Just because you can do something and get away with it doesn’t always mean you should.

    • Kyle Batson

      “Imagine if 5 people a day came up to you and did this what the perception would towards ALL photographers.”

      This is one of the main things that bothers me about this style of shooting. I’d rather people didn’t even know I was there. I don’t want to interfere with the scene unfolding in front of me. And if I am noticed, I’d rather the people I’m shooting didn’t feel like I was invading their space, annoying them, or being rude. I think this is especially true when you step in front of people walking and they have to walk around you. That would be rude enough without a camera. Just because you’ve got a camera doesn’t give you special dispensation to annoy people.

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

        Hey Kyle, definitely not out there to annoy people–rather capture a beautiful moment they are interacting in. However it is true that in the end people do get annoyed (which is the drawback)

        • Ray

          Eric – I think a prevailing opinion of many of the posters here that there is something disturbing about your approach. To me, there seems to be a lack of respect for the subjects when you say “people do get annoyed” and call that a “drawback”.

          While I sympathize with the desire to develop a style, an anything-for-a-photo-regardless-of-the-cost tactic seems a bit caustic. When presented with this type of ambush, it doesn’t help the public perception of photographers and the next time these people see a guy with a camera in hand approach them, they will likely be more leery. Yes, street photography shots are often caught surreptitiously but the aggressiveness of this approach does not create goodwill amongst to targets. On top of that and as previously stated, annoying unknown people at close quarters isn’t exactly the safest approach either. Best wishes to you.

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

      Hi Foggo,

      First of all I am a huge fan of your work and appreciate all the love and support you give the communities you visit. It is very inspirational.

      Also you bring up a good point. In different cultures shooting in different styles are important. I have found in Hollywood people frankly speaking don’t mind the flash much (people love to be highlighted).

      I keep your comments in mind and thanks for your support.

  • Michael

    I enjoy street photography and I also enjoy Eric’s blog but this video really disturbs me. I would be hell annoyed if someone just ambush me especially with a flash. I got a question for you Eric, don’t you care for people being annoyed and surprised? Like the girl with the phone was calling out to you after you took a shot but you just kept walking away ignoring her call, don’t you think that’s 1. being rude and 2. being disrespectful of the people you shoot while you publish them on your blog? I can see it will become an entirely different photography if you were to ask people for their permission but at least I think you should show some manners (‘I like your shirt’ is not the way ‘Yeah!’).

    One more thing Eric, here’s my tip to you: http://youtu.be/e5NgG5koPZU
    This guy is amazing, not only he asks people but he makes their day as well. Look how much respect he’s got with the people in the streets already knowing about his photography and his blog. This is like street photography to a whole new level, plus he doesn’t use flash :-)

    • Rinzi

      Scott Schumann’s stuff is great.

      • http://www.slruser.com/ SLRuser

        Scott Schumann seems to be a stand up guy and he has beautiful work. Aside from its location, street photography it is not.

    • Dnguyen

      Irrelevant! Sartorialist is a fashion blog. How else are you going to have people stand still so you can take their portrait showcasing their fashion style. Street portraits, yes.

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

      Hey Michael,

      I didn’t really notice that girl who was calling out to me — but noticed that guy at the end and I deleted his photo upon his request. The other girl who I did notice I did get a bit caught up in the moment and made the choice to avoid the confrontation. That is just me in that situation, and not how I always react when shooting.

      Scott is definitely great too–but hes not a street photographer. Street photography should be shot without permission. However he does what he loves and is great at it.

  • http://twitter.com/604Foodtography 604 Foodtography

    Sorry Eric, I know it’s all about experimenting and/or trying new things, but stick with what you were doing before. I liked that style of yours better.

    Quite a few of those people looked annoyed, and you shouldn’t have deleted that last picture, even if it was a shitty picture. Stand your ground, don’t be pushed over just cause he said you HAD to ask permission. Pfffft public space.

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

      Thank you 604! It is funny– I feel that deleting that photo when the people asked me showed that I was respectful, but it seems everything else is disrespectful. Hopefully I can find the balance and find my true passion.

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

      Thank you 604! It is funny– I feel that deleting that photo when the people asked me showed that I was respectful, but it seems everything else is disrespectful. Hopefully I can find the balance and find my true passion.

  • Mike

    Buddy, I’m a fan of street photography in general, but if you tried coming up to me and shooting me like this – I’d have punched you out.

    • http://www.eriklaurikulo.se Erik Lauri Kulo

      I agree with most comments about how this photography-style is quite disrespectful. Photographers should show the outmost respect for their subjects since they are actually using their subjects for their own purposes. But you say you are a fan of street photography, yet you’d punch a photographer? That’s just immature.

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

      Why would you hit someone for taking a photo of you?

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

      Why would you hit someone for taking a photo of you?

  • Guest

    There’s just nothing going on in those photos, definitely not street photography. At best you’re just trying to copy Gilden’s way of shooting…

    You seem so adamant about integrity and the purity of street photography yet hand out phony compliments (“nice hat” “I like your shirt”) just to try to get away with your way of shooting.

    Somewhere on your blog you made it a rule that it was about quality and not quantity, you should try to stick to that rule a bit more closely.

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

      Hey there,

      These photos are definitely not great. They were shot in only 3 minutes and I only showed the photos to illustrate an example. I typically go out and shoot an entire day and (if lucky) can get 1-2 decent photos.

      I will be more careful about editing- and your comment is true!

  • Anonymous

    When did this become about respect? I personally love the low angle on most of the shots. Gives you a different perspective. Also, the flash, honestly, I could take it or leave it but that’s not the point.

    Also, though I can’t speak for Eric, I feel that when he shows us these videos, and pictures for any of his photo walks, he’s showing us his style. How and what to shoot. If you look at his portfolio, that’s is where his true work goes. Think of these as “teaching aids”.

  • http://martoscbox.wordpress.com/ Martosc, [Gm]

    I found this method very obtrusive and annoying. Candid? Yes, of course. Snapshot? Yes, also true. Street Photography? I’m not really sure, because I personally think that Street Photography should be unobtrusive and unnoticed.

    Taking photograph without consent is already rubbing (but not crossing) my ethics limit. This method would make it even worse. But, it’s your show, your call. Personal ethics and preferences may vary.

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

      This is definitely true. I am still trying to find the balance. Thanks for the support and encouragement :)

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

      This is definitely true. I am still trying to find the balance. Thanks for the support and encouragement :)

  • http://twitter.com/twocutedogs twocutedogs

    Wow. What a load of puritans we have here. At the end of the day, it is just a picture. That’s all. He’s hardly going up and mugging people. Think you guys should get a bit of perspective. It seems that even photographers are now questioning the ethics of photography. Sad state of affairs. On the shots themselves – agree that they are not particularly great, but I suspect Eric is putting them up as part of the video rather than as his portfolio.

    • http://www.flickr.com/photos/jkmcdonald/ Jason

      I agree with TCD here. I’m not a fan of this particular type of street photography as I’m more in favor in capturing a scene than kneeling down in front of someone and taking a shot. To me, there is no story in that but I do respect what you did here, Eric.

      Furthermore, I agree with what many of the others have said. You should not have deleted that guys photo. Had that been me, I would have explained to him that I had every right to take his photo. Don’t bow down to people like that simply because they are offended. If we all did that, street photography wouldn’t exist.

    • Chris Blackhurst

      lol You’re right Charlie – photographers should be the last people to question the ethics of photography (!). No, the subjects aren’t being mugged (although I have often cited Gilden’s street work as “photographic muggings”), but where is the consideration? Manners?

      Its all very well saying “Nice shirt” after you’ve already taken a photo, which, in the most extreme of cases, may leave the subjects vision impaired, if only for a few scant seconds, but if its unwanted behaviour, you may as well be pissing in someone’s ocular cavity and then complimenting them on their charming, smashing blouse.

      Please be aware, I am merely playing Devil’s advocate & this is essentially an abject lesson in fence sitting. I am aware that you are (by day!!) a lawyer, Charlie – I too dabble in (English and Welsh) criminal law and, as much as I am all for photographing in a public place, if Eirc was to do this in Blighty, he’d run the risk of committing a Public Order offence, where by if his actions, in a public place were likely to cause someone to be/feel harassed/alarmed/distressed – the offence would be complete, and he could see himself, at the maximum doing six months and paying a £5000 fine (though this is unlikely.

      We can chuckle about it. It’ll never happen, will it? Just like some over protective parent would never punch someone in the throat for zapping their kids in the face with a flash.

      I really like Eric’s shots, but I’m not always a believer in the ends justifying the means. Eric can and does achieve better shots using other techniques. I think this has been a successful exercise though, as it has clearly generated a lot of debate (and probably hits in Eric’s blog).

      I am a big promoter of old school ethics and think that there is a lot of milage in “manners maketh the man”. I don’t think that needs to mean asking for permission prior to taking a photograph or anything, but perhaps a little consideration about how your actions may make people feel, might be proportionate (and not that hard)?

      And, if you’re the sort of photographer who couldn’t give a toss, then good luck to you and it will be of absolutely no consequence to know that I would have lost a fraction of respect for metaphorical “throwing rocks at the moon” attitude.

      Oh, did I mention, I like all of your shirts? ;-)

      • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

        Very well said.

    • JoelTilden

      No – he’s not “mugging people” … he is inconveniencing them and being impolite to them and breaking any number of social conventions, in order to take bad photos … it’s that last part which is the true “crime” for anyone forgives a genius their “eccentricities”.

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

      Thanks for bringing perspective to the situation Charlie. Yes, at the end of the day it is still an image and I try to be genuine with my photography. And those photos are definitely NOT going into my portfolio (instructive than my best work)

  • http://twitter.com/thewtb William Brawley

    I’m not a fan of this. Sure some of the photos looked great, no doubt about it, but being so intrusive made it just feel awkward. Most of the people seemed surprised and annoyed. I hope this just stays as an experiment.

    Also, I agree with “604 Foodtography” – no need to delete that photo since you were on public property.

  • http://twitter.com/thewtb William Brawley

    I’m not a fan of this. Sure some of the photos looked great, no doubt about it, but being so intrusive made it just feel awkward. Most of the people seemed surprised and annoyed. I hope this just stays as an experiment.

    Also, I agree with “604 Foodtography” – no need to delete that photo since you were on public property.

  • Sophia

    Hey Eric, while I greatly admire you for trying to do a street photography gig full-time, I gotta say I am not liking the direction you’re taking lately. To me, great street photography is all about capturing the elusive moments that tell a story. I am not seeing any stories in these photos, just a bunch of snapshots that could be taken by anyone (not to mention a few pissed off people, and I can’t blame them – I have no objection to unobtrusive quick pics, but this approach with the flash and getting right in people’s way is kinda obnoxious to me.) I could be totally wrong, but it feels to me like you are maybe feeling a bit of desperation in trying to make this gig work out, and you’re shooting wildly, man! Please, take a breath, slow down, and work on capturing great moments – decisive moments – not just snapping away for the sake of it. Your earlier work showed promise of having a good eye, but lately, meh. Sorry dude, don’t wanna be harsh, but I’d love to see you succeed and produce great shots.

  • Sophia

    Hey Eric, while I greatly admire you for trying to do a street photography gig full-time, I gotta say I am not liking the direction you’re taking lately. To me, great street photography is all about capturing the elusive moments that tell a story. I am not seeing any stories in these photos, just a bunch of snapshots that could be taken by anyone (not to mention a few pissed off people, and I can’t blame them – I have no objection to unobtrusive quick pics, but this approach with the flash and getting right in people’s way is kinda obnoxious to me.) I could be totally wrong, but it feels to me like you are maybe feeling a bit of desperation in trying to make this gig work out, and you’re shooting wildly, man! Please, take a breath, slow down, and work on capturing great moments – decisive moments – not just snapping away for the sake of it. Your earlier work showed promise of having a good eye, but lately, meh. Sorry dude, don’t wanna be harsh, but I’d love to see you succeed and produce great shots.

    • http://www.eriklaurikulo.se Erik Lauri Kulo

      I couldn’t agree more with you, Sophia. Eric Kim is a source of inspiration for me but this direction just isn’t what I expected from him. Street photography is a whole lot about respect. You have to respect the fact that you’re actually photographing people without their consent and therefor you should be thankful for every time you get a picture of someone. And this is road Eric Kim is going down is just obnoxious. It’s now about him, and not about the people he photographs, they are just tools for him to get his photos – at least that’s the feeling I get.

      I do agree with another point as well that another user commented: the compliments Eric Kim gives people are given while he is walking (in a fast pace) away from the people – it doesn’t seem creditable at all. And this way of talking to people just further portrays an image of being in a hurry for the next “great picture.” But in reality, he is missing out in the REAL meeting with people.

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

        Hi Erik,

        Definitely street photography is about respect. I try my best to be respectful when on the streets and delete photos when people request.

        There are times when I interact more with people (like in Venice Beach) but Hollywood is a bit more hectic and doesn’t give me the same opportunity (I feel). Thanks again for the input!

        • http://www.eriklaurikulo.se Erik Lauri Kulo

          Hello Eric,

          Thank you for the reply. In the heat of all these comments I hope you understand that people are upset because you’ve always displayed a very friendly attitude, but amidst it all this video comes along and you come off as very cocky and bothersome for people.

          I do understand you probably don’t not mean to be like that at all. And I’ve always enjoyed what you put up on the web. One can certainly tell you’re young and experimenting; which is great. So if you feel that the Bruce Gilden-style is the way you should be heading, then so be it – that’s your call.

          But take your time, as Sophia said, slow down and see how you can perfect it. And from what you probably can tell through these upset people commenting, you should perhaps be thinking in terms of how you can do this upfront photography-style but in a way that shows the respect your subjects deserve.

          In the end I’d just like to point out that I’ve been seeing a lot of development from you and I enjoy it. I’ve been following you for a while and I will continue to.

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

        Hi Erik,

        Definitely street photography is about respect. I try my best to be respectful when on the streets and delete photos when people request.

        There are times when I interact more with people (like in Venice Beach) but Hollywood is a bit more hectic and doesn’t give me the same opportunity (I feel). Thanks again for the input!

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

      Hey Sophia,

      Thanks for your input and comment.

      The direction I am going is definitely controversial–but I have been enjoying it. It has challenged me not only as a street photographer but a person. I am still experimenting–so not sure where this will lead me.

      I will definitely slow down and try to capture those great moments. Thanks again for the love <3

  • pdcorlis

    To be honest, I’m surprised someone hasn’t knocked you on your ass yet. You seem like a good kid, but there’s plenty left for you to learn about people, photography, and your long term goals as a street/social photographer. What exactly are you trying to show us about these people, the space they inhabit, and your or more importantly our connection to them?

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

      I studied sociology at UCLA, and am fascinated about the human condition, how people interact, and how people see the world. By getting close to people, I feel that I am able to capture a part of their essence, juxtaposed against their background. I love to experience what other people are experiencing and being more of a participant than a voyeur.

      Definitely not out there to scare people, but to showcase their beauty.

  • Melissa

    Wow. Is this Eric’s “jump the Shark” moment?

    (I kinda agree. This video kinda makes you look like an obnoxious, cocky, ass)

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

      Sorry that you felt that way Melissa. I was trying to be helpful to show this technique to others, rather than being annoying and an ass ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sepia-Prince/1816737124 Sepia Prince

    While the flash and “ambush” method is not my style, we all could see an ingredient that Eric has and a lot of others lack – BALLS! On a deep level, he shown me how to get close to our subjects with no fear.

    The fotos may not all be great, but I’m using this video as a teaching tool more than anything.

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

      Exactly Sepia– trying to make this more instructional than show off my photos (which weren’t great in the video)

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

      Exactly Sepia– trying to make this more instructional than show off my photos (which weren’t great in the video)

  • Dnguyen

    I don’t get most of the comments here. Put a GoPro cam on an M9 and make a video, people go crazy and want more. Take the camera and turn in into a 3rd person perspective, everyone is criticizing what they are watching. It’s the same Eric Kim doing what he’s been doing all this time. Keep up the work bro. I like how you’re moving forward, trying new things.

    • HoraceT

      You don’t “get it” because you are incredibly dumb … watch the videos again. LOOK for the difference between them (other than the perspective of the video camera), get your little sister to explain it to you if you still don’t get it.

  • JPR

    Personally, I am a huge fan of Bruce Gilden’s work. But keep in mind that in the end it’s about Gilden’s photographs, not his flash.

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

      Definitely agree.

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

      Definitely agree.

  • Kevin

    Finall nice to see you make a video kinda like Gilden’s, I give you credit for having the balls to go out in the street and “ambushing” people. It’s your photography style you should do whatever you like. This video is more entertaining than the Go Pro ones.

    Just start focusing more on “quality” of the images not the quantity. Plus you shouldn’t have deleted the photo, as a photographer you should have sticked up for yourself.

  • http://twitter.com/Gazonthestreet Gazonthestreet

    Great video Eric, best yet! I couldn’t shoot like you and Bruce, haven’t got the balls!

  • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

    The only thing more annoying than this approach is straight up paparazzi. This is no different, except your victims are regular people. And to the people on here who think Eric has ‘balls’ for doing this, you’re so off base. Balls is approaching people and asking permission, engaging with them or having the patience to compose and capture a moment properly.

    I think Eric is getting carried away with trying to create content for his readers and blog instead of focusing on being a better, more professional photographer.

    Whether you like it or not, Eric, you look like a complete douchebag behaving that way. You have all the right in the world to shoot people in public, but you need to adopt a little etiquette and exercise some manners in dealing with the people you encounter.

    Every photographer’s behavior effects the rest of us and how we’re perceived; especially in street photography. This bullshit is just making the climate that much more hostile for photographers.

    • http://twitter.com/twocutedogs twocutedogs

      this is the biggest load of bullshit i have ever seen on the web.

      1. no. it is not pap. eric is not stalking people. use of a flash makes someone a pap? give me strength.
      2. it’s easy to go up and talk to people. what is hard is to take canid shots with a flash up close. eric has not mastered it yet. not many have. but at least he is trying something.
      3. eric’s behaviour is fine. he does engage, which is a lot more than many flash photographers do.
      4. your final comment is just ridiculous.

      if you are going to write something on the internet, pls engage your brain first. idiot.

      • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

        Easy there keyboard warrior. Engage my brain? I see from your work you shoot the same way, so its no surprise you jump to the defense of this style of photography. I can’t say if your approach is equally intrusive and obnoxious, but at least your photos are good (actually very good).

        The backlash is because Eric is trying to gain a larger audience with these videos and he simply doesn’t pull it off.

        Maybe his mistake is posting a video before he actually knows what he’s doing. He comes off looking amateur and annoying.

        Just because your friends with Eric or shoot the same style, doesn’t give you license to attack anyone who finds this video and his behavior bothersome.

        I’m not the only one by a mile.

        • Dennisv

          “I’m not the only one by a mile.”

          So what does that prove? There are others who *don’t* find this video bothersome and we’re not the only ones by a mile either. We clear, Spanky?

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

        Charlie,

        Thank you for the support and words. Shooting people close with a flash definitely takes a ton of courage and helped me develop my eyes in a different way. Seeing your images and the work of many others have been very inspirational, and force me to challenge myself and my photography

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

      Hi Melo,

      First of all thanks for your input and thoughts. I definitely don’t see the people I shoot as my “victims”. I try to stay as courteous when shooting on the streets and keep a smile. Whenever people ask me to delete a photo, I usually do.

      When I first started street photography, I was a total chicken. Watching videos of Bruce Gilden gave me a lot of courage and inspiration–and my purpose of the video was to give others the same.

      Also lastly, this is just one style of street photography that is very uncommon but I am still experimenting with. It interests me and has challenged me as a street photographer and person.

      Take care,
      Eric

      • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

        Hi Eric. Thank you for your reply. Maybe you don’t understand how this can offend people and invade their personal space on many levels. Just because it’s legal to shoot in public doesn’t give you license to throw etiquette out the window. Your exuberance to shoot seems to be getting ahead of your work. Everyone has photographers they look up to. For you it is apparently Gilden. And although I’m not at all a fan of either his style or work, the issue is not just the subjective quality of the work, but the ethics of how one shoots unwilling subjects.

        Bruce doesn’t give a shit what people think, and applies his New York street attitude to his work. That may work for him, but you’re not a seasoned New Yorker, nor should you attempt to emulate someone else’s behaviour.

        You’ve found success with your blog and have gained a decent readership and coverage; don’t let that cloud what you are at heart… a photographer. Regardless of your style of photography, how you engage with your subjects is a point of personal decorum and reputation. Videos like this only serve to paint you a prick who cares more about the shock of shooting this way than the quality of your work.

        Unnerving countless people is neither artful nor respectable.

        There will always be people like Gilden or ‘Twocutedogs’ for that matter. That doesn’t mean you have to ‘try’ to be a dick.

        Someone like Bill Cunningham excels at impromptu street photography. He too shoots from the hip and quickly, but he carries himself with dignity and respect and shoots in a manner that serves to compliment the subject as opposed to ‘victimize’ them with a rude, abrupt intrusion. I’d take Cunningham over Gilden any day for many reasons.

        I hope you can see the difference and think deeply about whether this choice betters you at your craft or serves to only polarize you as a point of debate.

        Best,

        Melo

        • http://twitter.com/twocutedogs twocutedogs

          Melo – let’s get some perspective here. Eric is walking around, smiling and taking pictures of people with a flash. He comes across as an eccentric to my mind. Life is full of eccentric people. But the difference between Eric and some sociopath is that Eric is trying to create art. Flash, and getting close, is a type of street photography that can, when mastered, work wonders. You can create light from darkness, place shadows where you want, create depth and popping subjects. Why should this type of photography be prohibited, or not practiced? Just because some people with a more conservative view think it is wrong? Why is it any worse than taking pictures generally? Tele shots or shooting from the hip is just plain creepy. And I hasten to add is easy photography with very little merit. In fact shooting from the hip is not photography at all. It’s an act of luck where the photographer cannot be responsible for the image as he hasn’t even framed it himself.

          Shooting with a flash is not illegal and to me is not unethical either. There are far worse things in life than walking up to someone and taking their picture. The key is how you carry yourself. Either see it as your right to take pictures like Gilden does or engage with people like I try to do.

          • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

            There seems to be little point trying to explain the other perspective to you. You are one of these photographers and you seem hell bent on defending it instead of seeing another point of view.

            I have no issue with flash or street photography. The issue at hand is the intrusive style. Walking up to a stranger and taking a photo 3 feet from their face. It is especially bothersome when children are involved.

            Call it whatever you like. Many people find this intrusive and rude.

            I am a professional street photographer. I carry myself in a polite, professional manner and make every effort to make my subjects comfortable. It is not an argument over which style is best. It is a case of manners, which was lacking in the video that created this debate.

          • http://twitter.com/twocutedogs twocutedogs

            Melo – I can see other people’s point of view. I just don’t agree with it. And I doubt you are a professional street photographer. You are telling me you make your income purely through print and book sales? Not even Magnum photographers survive purely on that.

          • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

            Now you’re just annoying me. You doubt I’m a professional street photographer? You’re proving your small-mindedness. I don’t sell prints or books. I do actually get paid to shoot on the street, but I don’t have to qualify it to you even though you seem to think you’re an authority on street photography.

            And I find it so cliche that photographers like you worship people like Gilden just because they’re official ‘Magnum’ photographers. It’s like people that swoon over Bob Dylan because he’s Bob Dylan. His singing is on par with Gilden’s photography.

            Although many of those old school photographers earned notable accolades and recognition for their careers and work, they are not the standard for all photographers nor the measuring stick.

            What makes me a professional is not just the fact that I earn a living, but that I carry myself in a professional manner before, during and after the shot.

            The issue (again) is the manner in which this story was shared, the way Eric approached people on the street, and the nerve it struck with many people.

            You can defend it all you want, but it won’t change the fact that most people find this style of photography rude and intrusive, even if only for a moment.

          • Charlie Kirk

            Is your street work the stuff on the link from your twitter? If so, sartorialist wannabe consensual portraits is not street and I should really stop wasting my time typing.

            On Magnum. They have Parr, D’Agata, Webb, Soth, Gilden to name but a few. All fantastic photographers. Worth holding that agency in high esteem I think. Can’t think of any others that get close if we are talking street or pj work.

            But maybe the sartorialist will start “fuckinguninspiringagency” some day.

            Suggest you go to your local library. Read some books about street photography and post again. If you are not busy with bible classes.

          • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

            Bible classes. How witty.

            So many strangers with unqualified insults to go around online.

            Where would the internet be without the virtual tough guys and link-less experts like you?

            It’s impossible to communicate how little your pea-brained opinion matters. Dip-shits like you are always big talkers online. I just wish it were possible in today’s world for keyboard warriors with busy fingers and big words like you to have to say what you say to people’s faces. How quickly would your bravado dissipate?

            You ‘street purists’ protect the definition of street photography with the same fervor the Tea Party nutcases protect their right to be ill-informed and ignorant.

            Street photography is a documentary style of photography that does not exclude interacting with the subject. Vivien Maier, for example; she shot both candidly AND interacted with subjects for consensual images. She is no less a street photographer for asking permission on occasion.

            And as for the Sartorialist… I would venture to say the millions of viewers of his work on a monthly basis may disagree on whether it is uninspiring. As would the industry that has been transformed by street style fashion photography.

            Bill Cunningham would also blow a hole through your idiotic summation of what qualifies as street photography.

            But I would venture to guess you have about as much fashion sense as you do social grace, so you likely have no place commenting on fashion photography.

            I’ve built a reputation, relationships and a business by shooting more that 2000 people on the street in the last couple of years. I’ll take my situation over yours (whatever that may be) any day.

            You can be the street purist and self-appointed authentic voyeur all you like.

            I’ll move forward with what I enjoy; meeting and shooting interesting people while you roam the streets afraid to talk to anyone or without the real skill of social interaction.

            Maybe one day you’ll pull your head out of your ass long enough to talk to the people you shoot (if you shoot at all) and experience the benefit of getting to know the stories behind the people in the photographs. It is about them after all.

            Good luck.

          • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

            Now you’re just annoying me. You doubt I’m a professional street photographer? You’re proving your small-mindedness. I don’t sell prints or books. I do actually get paid to shoot on the street, but I don’t have to qualify it to you even though you seem to think you’re an authority on street photography.

            And I find it so cliche that photographers like you worship people like Gilden just because they’re official ‘Magnum’ photographers. It’s like people that swoon over Bob Dylan because he’s Bob Dylan. His singing is on par with Gilden’s photography.

            Although many of those old school photographers earned notable accolades and recognition for their careers and work, they are not the standard for all photographers nor the measuring stick.

            What makes me a professional is not just the fact that I earn a living, but that I carry myself in a professional manner before, during and after the shot.

            The issue (again) is the manner in which this story was shared, the way Eric approached people on the street, and the nerve it struck with many people.

            You can defend it all you want, but it won’t change the fact that most people find this style of photography rude and intrusive, even if only for a moment.

        • Dennisv

          “Maybe you don’t understand how this can offend people and invade their personal space on many levels”

          Last time I checked, there is no constitutional right not to be offended. If there is, perhaps you could post it here for all to see?

          “Just because it’s legal to shoot in public doesn’t give you license to throw etiquette out the window”

          The only point in that statement worth noting is that it is ***legal*** to shoot in public and there is no need to ask anyone’s permission. Furthermore, there is no legal obligation to delete anyone’s pictur just because they tell you to.

          • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

            This isn’t about legality. It’s about etiquette. And I never said a word about deleting images. I don’t think you should ever delete a photo at someone else’s behest.

            Maybe you should read my comments with a little clarity instead of arguing points I never even made.

  • http://twitter.com/Myrddon Henning Nilsen

    Sorry Eric, but leave Gilden’s style to Gilden.
    He developed this style because that was part of his personality, is it part of yours?
    I wouldn’t say so at least, not the way you were before.

    This does not suit you and your images are worse because of it.
    Go back to what you did in venice beach.

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

      Hey Henning, thanks for the thoughtful response.

      When I met Gilden in Paris, he told me some things that really stuck out to me. First of all, he studied sociology in school (as did I) and he’s just absolutely fascinated with people. I feel the same.

      Also I’m definitely trying to find my style and still experimenting. Thanks for the feedback once again–time to go out and shoot some more :)

  • Guest2

    What an ar$ehole !! Which would probably be partially forgiven if he was anything more than a hack wannabe “photographer” !!

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

      I stil have a lot to learn, hopefully I can continue to develop and mature :)

  • Shane

    I’ve only recently become aware of this blog and have been sitting on the fence with it a bit. This video has helped me make my mind up once and for all.

    As much as I wanted to give it the benefit of the doubt, my instincts told me that Eric Kim is a bit of a wannabe, who picked up a camera one day, decided that street photography would be his thing and then found out who the big guns are, what equipment they use and from then on that was all that mattered. It’s one thing to say that you admire a certain photographer’s style and even appropriate technique/choice of equipment, in this case Bruce Gilden, but it’s a whole different story to just take what they do and just outright copy it. I’m a fan of Bruce Gilden’s work, though not his style but do understand that his images work as a result of his unashamed nerve, it certainly does not work here.

    Eric, I admire what you’ve managed to do with this website and even more so that braveness you’ve demonstrated in taking the leap to pursue your photography full time, but cut this shit out. If you stuck a camera in my face like this, I would take it from you and throw it under the next passing bus.

    • PeterP

      Agreed entirely – it seems to be someone wanting to be something and thinking that if he can fool himself he can fool the world – it’s probably a little sad actually come to think of it …

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

        Hey Peter. Believe me, I am not trying to fool anyone ;) I’m just trying to help others out–especially those who have trouble with courage shooting on the streets

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

      Hi Shane,

      Thank you for your input and thoughts.

      I first have to start off with the fact that I haven’t been shooting street photography for very long — around 3 years seriously. However I try my best to keep my knowledge open and be helpful to others.

      I am not original in this style, and it is still an experimentation. I am not quite sure what my style is, but I’ve been trying hard to see what I enjoy doing.

      As a community, I appreciate your thoughts and critiques. I am not sure how my style is going to develop in the next few years– but I appreciate the support.

      • Dennisv

        Dude, the guy basically threatened you. There is no need to justify your self to that idiot.

    • Dennisv

      “If you stuck a camera in my face like this, I would take it from you and throw it under the next passing bus”

      Oh look out folks, internet tough guy just posted some internet toughness!

      If you tried to take my camera from me, internet poser, I’d break your frigging arms. See how that works?

      • http://twitter.com/StyleQuotient Melo

        Congratulations on calling out an internet warrior then in turn being one yourself. Tough guy.

      • Shane

        I made no threats to Eric personally Dennis, I just suggested that if he were to aggressively invade my personal space like that, I would swiftly take from him the item he used to invade that space. Try reading things through first in future, it may save you from coming across as such a douchebag.

  • Charlie Kirk

    Aren’t all you haters late for church? Give the guy a break. He’s 23. Starting out. Probably trying different things.

    And as if what Eric is doing is going to make it harder for other photographers. Give me strength. Some of those most idiotic replies I have ever seen…

  • http://techpatio.com Klaus

    Wow, this video really got people (comments) heated up in here :)

    Personally, this is not my style of photography. I’d also like to see a bit more respect out on the streets, as this in turn comes back to the rest of us – the subjects thinking street photographers are obtrusive. I don’t mind that Eric made this video and I’m thinking he will make another video too (with him in front of the computer) explaining maybe why he did this and respond to some of the comments here.

    I just hope that Eric will go back to the kind of street photography that he did before,while also being slightly “on the border”, at least they were not as Bruce Gilden as this.

    Someone wrote that he’s just 23 (don’t know if that’s true, but he’s young and that’s all that matters) and he’s supposed to try out things to find out what his style is, so hopefully he doesn’t stick with this Bruce Gilden style :)

  • http://www.dannyst.com Danny St

    You guys need to take it easy on the tough love. I always admired Eric’s passion and ability to try and adopt to different styles in street photography. This is only one of the many things he can do. And the mere fact that he’s always willing to share and inspire those who want to learn is enough to convince me that he’s much bigger than what you guys are starting to derogatively call him.

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

      Thanks for the support Danny! Like you said, I am still experimenting a lot with different styles- and I seem to enjoy this one. Hope I can continue to grow this community and spread the love

  • TN

    “You took my picture and inconvenienced me! Prepare to fight!” Wow, there’s alot of “keyboard warriors” here. :-P Really? I can’t believe people would risk going to jail or being sued over somebody taking their picture.

    I might not agree with your style or do it myself, but I do appreciate your willingness to share what you do and your passion with the rest of us. I find your website to quite instructional. I am still a big fan of “shoot from the hip!”

  • Hunter White

    I think it’s the flash which is annoying people. Also, you should be quicker about it, when I watch Gilden, he is there for a split second.

  • Gary

    Like it!! Gutsy. Not all people get Gilden: don’t expect them to get this, either. Keep doing what you do.

  • http://twitter.com/supahcute hana k.

    OMG, people. Eric did not say he was trying to be the next Bruce Gilden!! He is experimenting with a certain style of photography and challenging himself by doing so.

    I am not a fan of this style of photography, but I am all for people trying something different outside of their comfort zone. To see some of the “backlash” is ridiculous.

    However, Eric, I am impressed at how you engage with your readers and respond to comments in a mature rational way. KUDOS TO YOU!!

  • Kgw_photo

    I watched your video last night and something bothered me about the flow of your shooting. I understand that you were trying to pack a lot into a short video segment which may account for some of the things that seemed out of place. You were extremely abrupt in your approach to your subjects. Your body language did not convey confidence. Maybe a smoother style would allow a closer approach to your subjects without putting them on edge. You are working too hard at being fearless.

  • Rpphoto Mail

    Great video Eric nice to see a streetog sharing his learning curve we’ve all wondered how it’s done it’s no an easy thing to do I tried it in NYC and nearly got my ass kicked but it gave me a rush! keep up the videos and sharing you love for street with us all !

  • Erik Ny

    I think it’s worth noting that the flash seems to annoy a lot more people here behind their keyboards than out in the street. Eric, I think you handle people with a great attitude, and practicing that will also let you keep a larger percentage of your shots.

    I don’t think it’s any more polite to take people’s photos “on the sly” than like you do here, up in their faces. This at least give them the honest opportunity to interact with you if they truly don’t want their face in your photos.

    I for one think you’re both inspirational and educational. It may not be a style of street photography I plan to pursue, but I admire you for doing it.

  • Eike

    What you are doing here is not what most people understand under street photography. The photo should tell a story, and that makes it difficult to shoot good streets. And I don’t see so many story telling photos on yiur blog.
    Your stile as far as it is in the video parts, running around, holding as much people as possible the camera into the face and shot, at the end of the day, you have one or two pictures that are good, but the rest is for the waste.
    First if I were your, I would only show the good ones and hide the other 90%. Just to bring more quality into your blog. Secondly I would stop making the videos. Specially when you want to sell workshops it is not the best way to see you running around and just shot everything you see. By the way, this has nothing to do with balls.
    And the video is the part where I start to think what people are coming to your workshops? What do they expect to learn?
    Keep it relaxed, focus on a good arangement and tell a story like a lot of photos from other photographers you blog about. And make one, the good picture.

  • Eike

    What you are doing here is not what most people understand under street photography. The photo should tell a story, and that makes it difficult to shoot good streets. And I don’t see so many story telling photos on yiur blog.
    Your stile as far as it is in the video parts, running around, holding as much people as possible the camera into the face and shot, at the end of the day, you have one or two pictures that are good, but the rest is for the waste.
    First if I were your, I would only show the good ones and hide the other 90%. Just to bring more quality into your blog. Secondly I would stop making the videos. Specially when you want to sell workshops it is not the best way to see you running around and just shot everything you see. By the way, this has nothing to do with balls.
    And the video is the part where I start to think what people are coming to your workshops? What do they expect to learn?
    Keep it relaxed, focus on a good arangement and tell a story like a lot of photos from other photographers you blog about. And make one, the good picture.

  • http://www.photographyireland.net Mark Tracey

    Eric,

    Keep it up. Imho, there is absolutely nothing wrong with experimenting, looking at other great photographers styles and learning from them.

    Anyone who is a regular visitor to your blog and watches your videos should know by now what a decent and respectful person you actually are. As a result, I’m quite surprised by the overly heated comments from some visitors here.

  • Matt

    From reading your site, I think you do treat your subjects with respect. I think you try very hard to separate street photography from street portraiture. I’m not an expert on either styles. I think you like to capture those candid, fleeting moments that bring life & sparkle to the every day theater of the street. Which is why you try not to pose the subjects or engage them first. I don’t know what the masters of this craft did in the past. Did they talk to the subjects before or after or just walk away? I think it very much depends on the local culture and what’s acceptable in that region.

    Keep it up.

  • http://twitter.com/AndrewPritchard Andrew Pritchard

    I cannot believe the hate here. So what if Eric is imitating someone else’s technique? Most learning is done by imitation and emulation. So what if the photos aren’t that great? If they hadn’t been included, we’d have been left thinking “I wonder how that one turned out” each time.

    Eric, to borrow from Roosevelt: “Far better is it to dare mighty things… even though checkered by failure… than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

    Keep it up!

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

      Thanks for the support Andrew! :)

  • Miguel

    I think you do need balls to do that, but it’s unfortunate that some people get annoyed for a poor end result -maybe you shouldn’t need to shoot so much to get a few gems, maybe you should just be ‘looking’ more -. I wouldn’t like to be flashed like that, I would never do that to people I don’t know and I find it disrespectful but that is just me and . Maybe there is a mix of envy in this, because I would never have the nerve to do this. After all, you are not hurting anybody, and even some people take it as a compliment.

    How’s this for an idea: how about give your card to everybody you shoot, so then they can ask for the photo if they want it or if they question your right to put their photo on your blog, they can request you to take it off.

    I see the flash as a problem, because it is aggressive and it annoys physically. One thing is to object to somebody taking a photo of you, but having a powerful light flash in front of your eyes just because you want a nice photo… well, some people will find it offensive for sure. It would be the equivalent to exploding a firecracker in front of someone in the auditory terms (maybe a soft firecracker, but still strong and sudden). Is it really necessary? It just seems you are pushing the boundaries too much here.
    It is true that Art is about pushing the boundaries.. maybe when we see some real art come out of this then we will understand.

    All the best,
    Miguel

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

      Thank you Miguel for the feedback. I am trying to carry around more cards and I like your idea.

      As with the flash, I definitely don’t do it to annoy people. Rather, I think it brings out people’s soul by adding an extra dimension. And doing it during the day is not very bad either (you hardly notice it).

      Thanks again :)
      Eric

  • He

    Anyone else thinks this style of photography is annoying and 100% intrusive?

  • Davidcrane

    I recommend you hang out at the nightclubs with the paparazzi, at least if you get a a lucky shot of Lady GaGa you can make some money, not to mention you will be with an entire pack of @#$holes just like yourself. If your goal here is to further photography, you really need to take a long look in the mirror and ask yourself some serious questions. I don’t know how old you are but mentally I’d put you at 14 or 15. BTW, much of the work of your beloved Bruce Gilden say nothing about the human condition and are about as artistic as photos from the DMV red light cameras.

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

      Hey David,

      Thanks for the comment. First of all, shooting with a flash and getting really close is a new thing for me– and still an experiment. I have been trying to be as open with my progression as a street photographer as best as I can to help others, not to build controversy.

      And I still love the photos by Gilden and I definitely find him as an inspiration to me :)

  • Paul

    Great video Eric. What all the haters here don’t realise is that your video was not about image making but about overcoming fears and being gutsy.

    The reason for all the negativity is that you have exposed so many of the to be pussies. They’d rather attack you than grow a pair of balls.

    Forget about the flash thing that’s irrelevant. Bet all the pussies here are great at shooting from the hip.

    How you’ve managed to stay so polite in the face of such vitriol is a testimony to your style and class, the very thing so many of the pussies accuse you of lacking

    Keep shooting, keep experimenting and ignore the begrudgers!

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

      Thanks Paul– that was exactly my point. I wanted to show people how to approach people and take photos really closely and how they would react. I didn’t take very good photos in the video, and I hope people understand that.

      Hopefully I can continue to create videos that people appreciate and helps them. That is my ultimate goal :)

  • From Tokyo

    If a person walked down the street occasionally screaming at passers-by, you would probably think he was obnoxious and rude. But to him, it was performance art and a perfectly wonderful hobby! Doesn’t that sound stupid?

    This is what you (and the “artist” Gilden) are guilty of. You may think you’re creating art, but you’re essentially just screaming in people’s faces. The only difference is you’re using a flash instead of your voice.

    I hope that you stop doing this.

  • Guest

    Eric, Huff, etc… I am amazed how easy “street photography experts” are selling their services on the internet. I see nothing wrong with someone trying to develop his/her style and sharing the results online but charging money for useless workshops pretending that you have the skills to teach others is an insult, IMHO.

  • http://twitter.com/tgshinohara Takeshi S

    you wouldn’t want to do this in Japan. Trust me. lol
    nice try though. But I would dare use that kind of style.

  • Erik

    I think someone already did ask this, but I don’t think you really answered it. What’s the story you want to tell with these shots? Isn’t street photography about telling stories from real life and finding the beauty in everyday moments? This seems to put too much emphasis on the shooter and the style used, but honestly, how many times will the “deer caught in the headlights”-look be interesting? If the story is “look at the size of my balls!” i don’t think most people really care for it. IMO opinion this isn’t street photography, it’s just photography on the street. There is a difference!

    The fact that you’re trying out stuff and copying others ok, it’s how we learn. For this particular experiment I hope you learn that you’re crossing a line and realise you should back up. Street should be done with some tact.

  • Visualdelusions

    No offense, but if you came up to me like that I would fuck you up.

  • Dominic

    Eric,

    I’m weighing in kinda late here but I just wanted to say that I enjoyed this vid. The flash style – Bruce Gilden-esque thing is probably as far from my own personal style as can be – that said, you seem to be having a good time and for me, that’s part of the whole fun of street photography. I think it is a documentary style that will have more poignancy as time moves on – it depicts people as they are right now. As far as decisive moments goes, I think those come every so often with this approach (the one shot of the young girl looking ticked at her family would by my vote for the keeper out of this bunch). Those who criticize your approach as strictly an exercise in snapshotting/number of shots vs. ‘quality’ shots obviously don’t get it and that’s fine. Let them take their safe photos with ‘perfect’ composition. In short, keep doing what you’re doing if you enjoy it – there plenty of other photo blogs that the naysayers can read if they disagree or want to criticize.

    Dominic

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

      Hey Dominic,

      Thanks for the response. I originally intended to create this video to show the process of getting close to people. None of the photos I took were very well composed I do agree. Perhaps shouldn’t have included them to give people the wrong message.

      Definitely moving forward I will preface my videos and truly explain WHY I am putting the videos out there.

      Thanks again!

  • Guest

    I couldn’t watch the whole clip. It was too painful

  • Steem

    I’m bewildered why Kim and Gilden invite ethical scrutiny by posting these videos of themselves in action. With Gilden, ethics comes up in just about every interview. Whether you agree with the style or not, the issue takes away from the art. As for the style itself, it’s the abrasive photographer-subject relationship that comes through in MOST of the pictures. It’s close up but off putting at the same time, and the flash exacerbates this abrasiveness.

    Is there more skill involved with this in your face photo style than courage? That’s debateable. Both Gilden and Kim seem to have the exact same hunting style. Walk ten steps, flash the most interesting person, another ten, and so on. I would argue that great artists have unique irreplicable skill sets as it applies to their craft. In my opinion, this style of photography doesn’t qualify. But I judge the work for it’s own merits, and conclude that close up flash photographs of resentful street people is an aesthetic I generally dislike.

  • BRMC

    You have too much money and time on your hands. Try film photography for say.
    You are building your popularity on hate, i can’t think of anyone good who did that. Unless you want to become a paparazzi, dumb people shooting dumb people.
    Also, “street” photography downtown LA? Call it “boulevard” photography or “avenue” photography.
    This remind me of, South Park, Season 10, Episode 2, Smug Alert. Watch it.
    Because you have a 5D and your pictures look good doesn’t mean you are a good photographer. 5D is like Rayban’s Wayfarer, they look good on everyone.
    Sorry for the hate, i couldnt help but react.
    Good luck!

  • BRMC

    You have too much money and time on your hands. Try film photography for say.
    You are building your popularity on hate, i can’t think of anyone good who did that. Unless you want to become a paparazzi, dumb people shooting dumb people.
    Also, “street” photography downtown LA? Call it “boulevard” photography or “avenue” photography.
    This remind me of, South Park, Season 10, Episode 2, Smug Alert. Watch it.
    Because you have a 5D and your pictures look good doesn’t mean you are a good photographer. 5D is like Rayban’s Wayfarer, they look good on everyone.
    Sorry for the hate, i couldnt help but react.
    Good luck!

  • Themanstan

    horrible choice of subjects

  • crank

    Basically it seems that the video shows an “example” of “how to shoot”; not that he does this all the time because in reality when you shoot like this you know who’s willing and who’s not; that’s the human connection part. If anything redeemable the first photo is probably the best; the rest is just random people walking on the street. It’s 3 minutes and really it takes hours or all day of walking around and capturing that moment.

    Also everyone needs to get off their high horse. There is no “right” or “wrong” way to photograph. Are all the haters on here saying they have never gone out with their camera and just point and shoot? You don’t have to ask anyone’s permission to shoot but when you do; it’s a posed picture; which puts it in a completely different category. If you don’t understand the joys of just shooting candidly walking around than you are missing out.

  • http://www.nasubijutsu.com Nick

    Sorry, this all happened a while ago and I’m a bit late to the party. I’ll leave my own opinion out of it because I think enough people have had their say. However, one recurring theme in the comments that I find a bit strange is the way people criticise Eric for his style, then they criticise him for deleting the photo afterwards… I find this a bit of a contradiction. The fact that you deleted the photo, Eric, shows that you do care about people’s feelings and that you aren’t just exploiting your subjects. Good luck in your photographic endeavours. Don’t take all of these comments to heart – good or bad. Just do what makes you happy and try your best not to upset people on the way. I suppose, all that matters is whether you are proud of yourself and your work when you get home and look over it.

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  • OM

    Keep shooting like this and one day you’ll get knocked out. I know i know.. according to the law here in the states, in public you can shoot whoever you want. But then again there are unwritten rules to be followed.

    If i was in a bad mood that day and you find my not so happy mood to be interesting, I would’ve destroyed your camera the very least and probably angrily shout out “why the **** are you taking pictures of me without my permission,” etc.

    Don’t mean to be hatin, but “getting close” by shooting in their face is not the same as having a close relation with the subject and unveiling their true personality. You have to know them personally in order to that or at least to a certain extent.

    And lastly shooting like this often will increase the public’s awareness to photographers in a bad way.

    But hey, its your life your call, do whatever pleases your heart. Just my 0.02 cents.

    ** suggestion:

    Why don’t you use a longer focal range, shoot from a far. Sometimes you can pretend to be shooting the whole scene. Non-photography savy people won’t realize your using say a 85mm lens and zooming on their face?

    I do shoot random people but only if their doing something interesting, I try to not get involved in it. I don’t see the point of random portraiture. Like many have said here the story is missing, albeit it is difficult to get the story at times.

    best of luck with your experiment

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

      Thanks for the comment OM. One thing to note is that I also know NOT to shoot. And I typically try to interact with people when I am shooting. I used to do longer focal lengths, but found it less personal. Just my take :)

  • foritsed1968

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