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The golden rule: do unto others as you want others to do unto you.

In photography, treat others how you would like to be treated.

That means, if you don’t like being photographed, don’t photograph others.

That means, if you don’t like people making photos of you (without permission)— don’t photograph others without permission.

That means, if you respect your privacy, don’t intrude on the privacy of others.

Feeling comfortable in your own skin

I personally love being photographed. Therefore I have no qualms or problems photographing others— either with or without permission.

If you don’t like being photographed— how can you expect to be a photographer and photograph others?

My friend Sara Lando taught me — to get my own portrait made. I had a friend who is a portrait photographer make my portrait. I had Cindy photograph me. And through that process, I learned what I was comfortable with, and what I wasn’t comfortable with. Based on being in the shoes of the other — (turning myself from the photographer into the subject), I learned how to better treat others.

For example, I learned that I don’t like it when photographers (who are photographing me) look at their LCD screen more than at me. I therefore have started to try my best not to look at my LCD screen. Rather, to give focus and make eye contact with my subject.

Also, I like it when people offer to email me a copy of the photo. Therefore, when I make portraits of others, I offer to email them the photo. That makes them happy.

Another tip— if you are uncomfortable being photographed, learn to make self-portraits of yourself. Then ask yourself, ‘Why do I not like being photographed?’ Is it self-confidence issues about the shape of your face, your weight, or something else? My buddy Ramy taught me, ‘You should know what the good side of your face is.’

So friend, I encourage you to think of the ethics of your own photography. You need to build your own code of ethics. Don’t let nobody else dictate this for you.

So if you are a street photographer and don’t like having your own photo made— fix that. Learn to feel more comfortable being on the other side of the lens; and therefore you will be more confident making photos of others.

Shoot selfies, pay a commercial photographer $100 to make your portrait, or attend a portrait photography workshop.

The best way to conquer your fears of shooting photos is to conquer your fears of having your own photo taken.

Be strong,
Eric

Learn more: Photography 101 >