Street Photography – Epilogue

Donald Weber wrote an essay in March 2015 on the state of photojournalism today. Weber is a World Press Photo juror and a member of VII Agency. Despite the problems World Press Photo has had in recent years, it remains a very prestigious competition.

In the essay, Weber lamented the death of photojournalism has he knew it and as he learned it. And he is correct. Continue reading

Street Photography VIII

Some will say that a picture should need no caption, that it should stand on its own. It is true, in some cases, that a photograph can stand on its own and need no caption, or description. In many, I would suggest most, instances; however, some complementary text can be very important. Our own personal experiences play a large part in how we perceive visual imagery. A photo of Birkenau has a very different meaning to someone who is Jewish than to a Christian or an Atheist. A different meaning still to those who are older vs. those who are younger. We are informed by our own history. I understand the particular areas of Toronto I shoot in. I know the neighbourhoods and some of the people. Others who know the areas have a similar understanding of the pictures as I do because they have that history. What’s that old saying about walking a mile in someone’s shoes? We do not all see the same things, nor should we. What is appreciated by one person may not be by another. And there is nothing wrong with that. Continue reading

Street Photography VII

The discussion of editing has been left till now because it is, to me, of lesser importance than the rest. But it is also logically what follows what has come before it. Only after we have been out taking pictures do we begin the work of editing. It is for that reason, as well, that the next section on telling stories through a body of work comes after this one. It is only after we have culled and edited that we can begin to curate the finished photos into a coherent story, ready to show to others. Continue reading

Street Photography VI

The night is a very interesting time for photography in general and street photography in particular. Certainly the lighting is different. But more importantly, the people are different. It is a very different person who is out at night from the day. Even if it is the same person, they are different. The night is personal time. People who you might see during the day are more likely to be more relaxed at night. There is also a sector of the community that you probably will only see after the sun goes down. Continue reading

Of Ethics & Ethics – Photographic & Journalistic

The old saying is true. Opinions are like [insert specific anatomical reference], everybody has one. Witness the number of opinion columnists employed by newspapers and the number of pundits who appear regularly on other media outlets to expound at length about this, that, and any other thing. Like most any other endeavour, there are good and bad providers of opinion. What separates the two? Continue reading

Street Photography V

It is not just the fading romance of something that is about to disappear that he gives us, but rather a new statement now framed within his photograph that transcends the evocative beauty of the gardens themselves.

Jacqueline Kennedy, speaking about Eugène Atget Continue reading

Street Photography IV

Every picture tells a story don’t it…

Rod Stewart

In that classic song, which you are unlikely to hear much today given it’s racist lyrics, the protagonist is painting a picture with words and telling his story through song.

In street portraiture, your subject is telling their story through your picture with their words. Continue reading

Street Photography III

The camera is a shield. Even though you see everything through the viewfinder, you’re putting something between you and what’s happening.

John Hoagland

Being able to capture candid photos of people is key to successful street photography. As was discussed in the prologue and will be covered more in another essay, not all street images have to be candid but candids are a staple of the art form.

Continue reading

Street Photography II

The decisive moment is several things. It is the name of a book containing the photos of Henri Cartier-Bresson. It is the phrase Bresson came up with to describe his approach to his photography. It is the mantra that many have used to talk about street photography in the years since Bresson. Continue reading