Just a few more from the street

Started Feb 18, 2013 | Discussions thread
Dan Marchant
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Re: Just a few more from the street
In reply to Charles Pike, Feb 18, 2013

Charles Pike wrote:

Why have so many people looked at this one shot? I can go into my gallery and there are lots of shots that I think are better, but so far 40 of you have looked. Right now this is way ahead of all of the other photos that I have in my gallery.

Because it is the better photo. Take a step back and apply simple compositional rules.

Your first image is someone doing something very mundane (not overly interesting or exotic) plus the back of some people (almost never a good subject for a photograph). Yes there is a busker in the distance but too far away to be of any real interest.

Image 2 is slightly better but still not awesome. It is close in so no context as to where she is - it is something most of your audience see any day on the street corner.

Image 3 Again a common site and his face is obscured so no connection to the subject.

Image 5 Another uninteresting subject and badly composed - you have someone in frame with their head and feet cut off.

Image 6 - wow, whole different level. It is well framed with the lamppost and wall at either end, it has a strong line leading into the image, the group of people in the middle are (mostly) facing us and because of that we can see their reaction, or lack of it, to the guy with the trombone. As for the guy, we see buskers all the time but, you have an interesting angle on this one. He isn't sitting on the floor or standing (as most are) he is in a chair, side on to the camera with head back blowing. He appears to have his eyes closed as if he is lost in the music, almost unaware of the people around him.

It is the counter-point between the unusual view of the busker and the completely normal nature of the other people that makes this interesting. The image contains something unusual yet the people show no reaction to it.

Street photography is still photography. A photo isn't automatically good just because I took it in the street. I still need to at least try to apply the rules/guidelines that I would apply to taking any other photograph. Sure you can get away with some poor composition if you have a very strong subject. Likewise a well composed image may bolster a slightly weaker subject - but the images that shine out and to which people return time and again are the ones that are both interesting and well executed.

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Dan
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