Everyone out there has a story to tell about how he/she got with street photography. Why not give us some inspiration and write a comment below and share your story! Looking forward in reading all of them! :)
Archives for January 2011
Recently I made a post on my Facebook fan page, asking the community what they wanted me to write about. One of the topics at hand which was popular was the ethics of street photography. I intend this post to showcase some of my thoughts, and also open up for discussion to the rest of the street photography community.
“I have no ethics”
I’d love to start off this article with a quote from Bruce Gilden from this video in which he says, “I have no ethics.” If you see his in-your-face style of shooting in the streets, this quote may not come to any surprise to you. He is famous for getting extremely close to people and taking photos with his wide-angle lens and flash. If you look at his images, he takes an array of photos of people in society from Japanese Yakuza Gangsters to people in Haiti.
Note: Recently I did a blog post on the pros and the cons of rangefinders for street photography. I then came upon an insightful comment from Steve Foon about his experience from switching from using a DSLR to a rangefinder for street photography. Therefore I asked him to do this guest blog post and he graciously accepted! The post you are about to read is incredibly thorough and well-thought out. It is a must-read for anybody considering making the switch from a DSLR to a rangefinder for street photography.
As we roam the Streets to capture images, the tendency to look at the works from people who help create the genre like Bresson, Erwitt, Franks, Weeks, Maier, etc… just seem like the natural thing to do.
One thing kept coming up in terms of camera gear….. Rangefinder cameras.
Allow me to share with you my thoughts on this. Thanks to Eric for letting me share.
Disclaimer – I want to set the record straight that although I am using a rangefinder more and more, I still love what a DSLR can do. Please don’t think that my comments towards rangefinders is a put down on DSLR’s or any other camera format.
This disclaimer comes from a recent posting I made about rangefinders that had some people in the DSLR camp in a rage.
Note: Every week, I feature street photographers with great skill and soul. For this week, I decided to feature street photographer Derk Zijlker from Amsterdam. Derk has an uncanny ability to create images which juxtapose characters and their stages. If you look at his images, you can almost feel that you are there. Want to hear where he finds inspiration and how he shoots on the street? Read his exclusive interview below and be blown away.
Bruce Gilden is a street photographer that I incredibly admire. Although there is definitely a lot of controversy over his style of street photography (aggressive and in-your-face), there is no doubt that he is one of the best contemporary street photographers alive. He is a part of the street photography agency called Magnum Photos and has been shooting Japan’s Yakuza gangsters, the homeless, prostitutes, as well as ordinary people on the street for decades. His images show the true characters of people–unposed, raw, and gritty. The fact that he also uses a flash when he shoots gives his images a third dimension and is his patented technique.
Recently New York Photographer and Filmmaker Cheryl Dunn has announced her new documentary on New York street photography titled “Everyone Street.” I stumbled upon a short video clip of Bruce Gilden and knew that I had to share it with the rest of you guys. You can see the guy gets a lot of crap on the street for his style of street photography but still treats it like a walk in the park. I think we can all learn a lesson from the guy and have more balls on the streets.
via The New Yorker
Note: Nacho Cordova who recently wrote this blog post about the differences between candid and street photography wrote this nice street photography poem for us all to enjoy. Let him know what you think by leaving him a comment below!
Walking with a Camera
Street photography is
ambulatory and peripatetic,
which is not to say pretty pathetic
though it is that too
when it evokes the
emotion of the dingy streets
it loves to walk,
temporarily and momentarily
chased by shadows
into that alley where
flirting freely with the instantly impermanent
–I wonder if those two will…?
fleetingness of the moment,
which, though recorded,
as all subjects are,
with inimitable singularity, both
always and never
ahead of time,
–Who needs a Leica?
bothered, bewildered and
ironically bemused all at once-
ready to find the urban hope
In the least likely places
–Leap the puddle already!
What better way to allude to
the illusive nature of the
hope that slinks surreptitiously
down the street
with a finger on the shutter?
— Nacho Cordova
Note: Every week, I feature street photographers with great skill and soul. For this week, I decided to feature street photographer Dominique Jost from Switzerland. I found Dom’s work on Flickr and I was blown away by his vivid and provocative B/W images. His work is very unique as he specializes in street photography with his iPhone. Intrigued enough? Read his exclusive interview below and see his amazing images as well.
Recently one of my readers named Reacher Rau suggested that I write a blog post on the pros and cons of using rangefinders. He told me how he always heard how awesome rangefinders such as Leicas were good for street photography, but never heard a discussion about the pros and the cons. Although I have to disclaim that I am not a rangefinder master, I still have enough experience using them so I feel that I can give a pretty unbiased opinion on both sides of the issue.
I have to say that I am a pretty passionate guy when it comes to street photography. However as I have recently noticed, passion simply isn’t enough when it comes to street photography. There are days that we aren’t going to feel inspired, which makes it really difficult for us to get in the streets and shoot.
Recently on Twitter I asked you guys to share your best street photos with me. Here are all of the best entries that I got which I find quite inspirational. Congratulations to everybody who made the list!
Curiosity by Juwan Dickerson
If you haven’t heard of Scott Schuman or his street fashion blog, “The Satorialist,” I highly recommend you to check it out. Essentially what Scott does is roam the streets of New York City and take photos of interesting people that he meets, with an emphasis on their fashion. If anything, Scott Schuman is less a fashion photographer and more of a street photographer with an eye for fashion.
In this beautiful and 7-minute mini-documentary, Scott gives an overview of what goes through his mind when shooting on his streets as well as why he does it. As you can see he (like many of us) hasn’t had any formal training in photography, but truly has a strong passion to go out and capture what fascinates him. He is quite methodical with his work and commited as well (he has run his blog for over five years, taking photos and updating them nearly everyday).
I think we can all draw inspiration from Scott and strive to capture the beauty of everyday life. If you look through his photos, he doesn’t necessarily take photos of people who only wear high-end clothes such as Prada or Gucci–rather the ordinary everyday people on the streets who are able to put together bits and pieces to create their own unique style. In this image you can see that he has even taken an image of a construction worker’s boots. How much raw and urban can you get?
What is your take on Scott Schuman and his blog? How can you take inspiration of his his style of photography? Share your thoughts with us and leave us a comment below!
Legandary fashion photographer Helmut Newton once said, “The first 10,000 shots are the worst.” When it comes to street photography in the digital age, I would say your first 100,000 shots are your worst.
Recently word of the phenomenal discovery of street photographer Vivian Maier has been hitting the web like wildfire. A fellow Chicago street photographer by the name of John Maloof found Vivian’s negatives in 2007 while at a furniture and antique auction house. After scanning and looking through her collection of 30-40,000 negatives, he soon realized that she had a tremendous gift for street photography. Not only that, but he realized that he also had a huge responsibility to share her work with the rest of the world.