Breaking Into Street Photography

Four Seconds in Times Square

Four Seconds in Times Square

Grabbing your camera and taking photos of complete strangers can be downright awkward for most people. It’s pretty common to hear from budding street photographers about their concerns of being too shy or worrying about upsetting unwilling subjects. One of the best ways to build your confidence as a street photographer is to focus on approaching subjects who are already desensitized to us camera-wielding intruders. Great subjects include street performers, artists, street vendors,or people in a parade.

Central Park Street Artist

Central Park Street Artist

Another element of street photography is being in the present (aware of your surroundings) and being fast on the draw. When I first started out shooting, I think I missed more shots than I took simply because I wasn’t prepared. The key to being ready for the action is having your camera readily accessible and your exposure settings dialed in. When it comes time to press the shutter button, the only thing you should be worrying about is composition and focus. If you have the luxury of time, then and only then, do you fiddle with exposure.

Presidents' Day at the Rockefeller Center in New York City

Presidents’ Day at the Rockefeller Center in New York City

As you become more experienced and comfortable you’ll want to practice combining exposure compensation, framing and focusing in one fluid motion, but for now, just focus on getting the shot!

Street Photography:A Guide to Finding and Capturing Authentic Portraits and Streetscapes By John Batdorff
John Batdorff Photography

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