I often get asked why I photograph on the street, what appeals to me about street photography…
Street photography is perhaps the last bastion of the photographic genre in which it doesn’t matter what equipment you have or what kind of photography you take. I’ve met other photographers from the fields of landscape, nature and portrait photography who have all said that street photography has tangible positive effects.
The “street” is a true theatre of ever-changing conditions that help sharpen and refine our intuitive photographic skills: people, light, geometry, the interrelationship between subjects and their environment, gestures, expression, and of course composition are all elements that are always at play.
Henri Cartier-Bresson, perhaps the most famous street photographer of all time, defined his “decisive moment” (the moment he clicked on the trigger) as “the simultaneous recognition of the meaning of an event in fractions of a second and a precise organization of forms that give that event its appropriate expression”.
Today it’s easy to take thousands of digital photos and photograph everything, where you take your smartphone, which is usually already in your hand, and just take pointless photos, I keep asking myself, what do people do with the photos later, look at them again, print them, or just delete them?
Street photography is completely different, it’s about raising awareness and thinking about what we want to photograph beforehand, as much as street photography can be about quick reactions, it’s often about being aware of what we want to photograph, and often you have to be very patient to get the image we’re looking for.
Street photography has strengthened my sense of intuition and evaluation of a scene and helped me develop a clear vision for my photos.
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