There is so much that I would like to do more with my photography, so many things that I have dabbled with and need to go back and explore in detail. Recently working with longer exposures for landscape, light painting human forms, street shooting at night, street shooting in the rain and at this moment I really like the black and white conversions I can produce with both the X100 and X-E1 using silverfx pro. This takes time and lots of it, don’t get me wrong I am not work shy but when you have a day job to pay the bills that is not photography, fitting in all this experimenting and learning is a challenge, and not forgetting I really like to write and share my effort on my blog and eats more time too.
For example I am currently reading a great deal about street photography and learning from so of its masters. Dazed digital here had published a fascinating piece on the A to Z of street photography …. Go take a look if your into street. How is it changing me
I am incredibly lucky I have the opportunity to travel every 3rd weekend to somewhere in the UK in my camper, this provides me with a huge pallet and playground to explore and improve my photography. Due to the travel it make sense that I learn more about street photography as that is the main genre that I work in.
Reading about and learning from some of the greats like Reed, Bresson and Cunningham has certainly inspired me and in particular to look at black and white in a different way. I don’t know why but street photography in black and white just seems better to the viewer, it has more feeling each image seems to have more to say, It tends not to date and go out of fashion where as my colour work will date in just 5-10 years and start to look ridiculous. Ok sometimes colour works but It’s say 20-30 years old and that’s more to do with analogue film types than anything else I mean who doesn’t like the cross processing filters.
I feel street is one of the most difficult genre’s to get great shots, its not easy and it takes practice. It also takes some time to build the confidence to get up close and not fear reactions from those your shooting, I don’t want to be a “covert” street photographer when I am out and about as it can put a seedy slant on things. I want to be bold and confident, I need to make the shot so I have to take some risk. This is only going to come with practice and more practice, and that means getting out on the street and shooting.
Taking street shots from a distance is all well and good and I like the results in many cases. It captures a moment in time as it is today and I am happy with that. So why not stop there, well streets are full of people (normally). They are participating in everyday life and that’s interesting think of it as my version of reality TV, its fantastically diverse and entertaining but to capture it is not easy, things happen in a instant moments are taking place all the time so you have to be every observant but then ready to take the shot. I can’t say I am very good at this with regards to shooting people but I think I am growing in confidence. Lets face it I am not doing any thing wrong, so its me being scared, not just that some confrontation may occur but also I case I offend anyone, this for me would be terrible. I am learning that just smiling works really well before and especially after taking a shot, if I’m spotted of course. It becoming a sort of self test game. Take the shot in full view NOT from the hip and don’t get spotted. It’s great fun your should challenge yourselves. Ok I do still shoot from the hip particularly in crowded areas but I am slowly becoming more and more bold with my approach and I can start to see the results.
I am getting a little more brave each time I go out punching myself out into that uncomfortable space and shooting, I think the results are starting speak for themselves I’m getting increasingly more interested shots. The limitation is me …..and I have to push this to one side to improve.
It’s cool journey and I look forward to my weekend excursions just to shoot more street.