Clive Moss wrote:
> OK -- so it is a very delayed response.
> Great site. I have been wondering about how to do street photography
> without embarrassment. Your advice has motivated me to try again. If I
> do not post again, it is because I have been mortally wounded by someone
> I tried to photograph, or the pics are so bad that I am ashamed to show
> - Clive Moss
I do a good deal of "street photography". Besides capturing a lot of
very interesting people, it also is great documentary photography that
shows events and trends, fashion, buildings, etc, of our time.
My secrets for street photography without getting killed include some
fast slight of hand on occasion (looking like you are photographing
somewhere or something else). But more often its just a really big smile
that disarms people and makes me appear less sinister.
If you have a woman friend or spouse, who hangs with you, it softens
things. A man with a camera and a scowl are an invitation to distrust.
Depending upon the circumstances, I'll engage people in conversations
about the event, themselves, their kids (if they are around), etc, or if
time is short and I'm about to move on, I'll give them an award winning
smile and a wave that says, I'm just here having a good time, so enjoy
the fact I find you enjoyable to photograph.
I have rarely had a confrontation (I know people who read me here will
find this hard to believe, but it is true)... ;-) If things go really
sour (very, very rare) I tell them like it is... in a public place they
have no rights to privacy, and that's the law (at least here it is).
If I think I've gotten a really valuable image, I try for a model
release. Most people are amazingly easy about this (in Canada, at
least) if you offer them some copies of the images, especially if their
kids are in them!