Street Photography is quite different from what we do when capturing buildings, making portraits, etc. it is more candid than capturing people on wedding days and on their best foot forward times.
Street photography captures inanimate and animate objects both. You may sometimes need to ask for permission to shoot them, at other times they just go with the flow and make it easy for you.
Here are some tips to help you do what you do better.
- Take several shots of the same scene. Don’t leave with just 2-3. At times, the subtle difference behind what’s happening in the background or what the subject is doing makes the photograph. A lift of the eyelid or a change in the posture or someone raising their hand, etc may add a dimension that was missing and make it a great one.
- Apply flash – if you are someone who isn’t into photography like it makes their life, then make use of your limited gadgets and time. Use flash every time you capture if there is not sufficient light. Unless of course you are shooting at the best times of the day – sunrise/sunset. Most cameras have a flash, us it or carry an extra flash.
- If there are animate objects in the picture, get them to make eye contact. The eyes are the windows to one’s soul and you will get a better picture than when the subject is looking elsewhere.
- Go low or higher as the need may be. We see the world from our eye level. But not everything looks best from that height. Go low or higher as required to get a different perspective.
- Try to capture someone candid – these moments come by once in a while. You are trying to capture someone and he is conscious. But there are subjects who give you candid shots
- Get them to repeat what they were doing. If it has a hand gesture or a movement of the limbs or an act that can be repeated, ask them to do so. Some will oblige.
- Direct them to do what you want them to do. Ask for permission to capture them. If they agree, most likely they will accept your directions.
- It’s called the fishing technique. You just identify a beautiful frame and wait for someone to enter it. A classic technique.
- Don’t always look for people. Create visual treats through use of lines, patterns and textures.
- There’s something called negative space. If the frame is too crowded use negative space. It is intuitive.
- Use minus exposure compensation. It is a technique in which you put the subject into bright light and set the exposure-compensation of your camera anywhere between -1 and -3. It creates dramatic shadows which add a different dimension to the photograph.
Some of the pictures you click will make for candid shots, others won’t. What you like and think is the best shot may not be everyone’s favorite.