Saturday, April 4, 2009

Street Photography

Street photography is half photojournalism, half poetry, laced with a stiff shot of moxie.

Some street photogs pound the pavement, eyes (and mind) alert, others park themselves at a well-trafficked intersection and allow life to move into the viewfinder. Both methods can yield dramatic images.

Let's look at two examples.

"The Red Coat is Coming" is an example of staying put and allowing life to come to you. I shot this image in NYC on the corner of 34th Street & Eighth Avenue. As a sea of humanity waited for the friendly 'Walk' sign I noticed one woman deviated from the usual NYC black garb. All I had to do was wait, focus and shoot a burst as she crossed towards me.

"Bench Mates" obviously required a bit of footwork. The NYC subway system is ripe with compelling photo opportunities (I'll address technical issues in a future post). This image was totally serendipitous. I was headed home, a few hours after street level work, and noticed this rather disparate group of New Yorkers waiting for a downtown train. All that was required was to jack up the ISO (to accommodate the platform's low light) and shoot off five or six shots. End result -- a slice of NYC life effectively captured and archived.

So steel up your courage and give street photography a shot. Set yourself up at a favorite intersection or simply stroll the streets - either way you'll come away with a greater appreciation for your town and hopefully a fine picture or two or three.