Dear friend,

Why do you feel guilty shooting street photos?

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DOWNLOAD PDF: Why do you feel guilty shooting street photography

STREET PHOTOGRAPHY 101

1. Possible theories

Man with glasses crossing the street. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

  1. You feel guilty shooting street photography because you don’t like being photographed, because you are uncomfortable with your body or facial image, and you (wrongly) assume everyone else doesn’t like being photographed. Solution: make self portraits of yourself, and learn how to be comfortable being photographed.
  2. You were raised with “modest” Puritan-Christian “humble” virtues which tells you NOT to “bother” or “disrupt” others. Solution: DO NOT APOLOGIZE for making pictures of others. You aren’t doing anything wrong. You’re making beautiful art.

2. Create your own table of values

Suit in the bathroom washing his hands at whole foods. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

The more I think about photography, art, and life… so much of our morals, ethics, and “values” are super-imposed on us by our parents, our society, our culture, our friends, bosses, jobs, etc. we rarely have the chance to question ourselves, and ask ourselves…

What do I really think and believe in?

3. How I shoot street photography

Woman laughing. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

In street photography, I am aggressive, unapologetic, yet friendly and I smile a lot.

I know I’m not doing anything wrong, both ethically and legally.

Ethically, taking a picture of someone isn’t a big deal. I’m just photographing the photons or the light bouncing off their body… I’m not “stealing their soul” or something silly like that.

Legally, I have the right to photograph anyone or anything in a public space.

4. Shoot street photography with love

Two women having a conversation. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

To take this further, your picture-making aint an “attack” or “assault”. Your camera is NOT a gun which shoots bullets and assaults your subjects. NO!

Man cleaning display. NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

A camera just captures light. You’re just capturing light. You’re not doing any positive harm on anybody or anything. You’re reactive… you’re accepting the light that is already around you. You’re actually more passive in that sense— you have openness, and the light of the world enters your lens, and enters your soul and consciousness.

5. Have confidence in yourself, that you’re doing the right thing.

Cartier construction worker

To sum up, the best way to evolve as a photographer and artist… don’t apologize. Don’t apologize for making pictures. Don’t need to “explain” yourself to anybody.

Be bold, be strong, and be self-assured.

NYC, 2017. Pentax 645Z

Make pictures with gratitude, with joy, and with self-assured strength.

BE STRONG,
ERIC

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STREET PHOTOGRAPHY 101

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FUNDAMENTALS OF STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

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Street Photography Inspiration

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Learn From the Masters of Street Photography

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“He without a past has no future.”

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The Masters of Photography

Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos
Prague, 1968. Josef Koudelka / Magnum Photos

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