Saigon, 2017

1. Shoot a lot.

Downtown LA, 2016

The more you shoot, the more lucky you will get in street photography.

If you want to hit a home run, do you want to get 1000 pitches or just 10 pitches?

The more you shoot and the more often you shoot, the more stuff you will see. The more “decisive moments” you will encounter. And the more you can be hit with inspiration, serendipity, and a chance of making a good street photo.

2. Use your viewfinder

Santa Monica, 2009

Don’t shoot from the hip (technique of not looking at the viewfinder). The more you use your viewfinder the more confidence you will have. Also the better your compositions, because you will frame more accurately.

If your camera doesn’t have a viewfinder, use the LCD screen.

Also after you photograph someone, smile, and say “Thank youIf you’re in North Korea, then shoot from the hip.

Another tip: keep your camera to your eye, and hold it for 30 seconds after you’ve shot a scene to be more discrete.

3. Take more chances

Prague, 2015

The more risks you make in street photography, the more chance for reward.

Risky ideas:

  1. Photograph someone who scares you.
  2. Ask for permission of someone who you think might say no.
  3. Take two steps closer.
  4. Experiment with more dynamic and edgy compositions. Intentionally tilt your camera, aka the “Dutch angle.”

4. Have more fun

Downtown LA, 2015

Street photography should be fun. If it isn’t, you’re doing it wrong.

To have more fun in street photography:

  1. Go down different routes. Never go down the same path twice. Add randomness and chaos to your shooting.
  2. Smile and laugh while you’re shooting. If you’re having a good time, you will spread positive vibes and feel more confident.
  3. Don’t take your street photography too seriously: Living a creatively fulfilling life is more important than making good photos. Never forget.

INSPIRE YOURSELF WITH STREET NOTES MOBILE EDITION: a street photography workshop in your pocket.



Tokyo, 2012

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

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