Street photography; Art or voyeurism?

Started Dec 2, 2012 | Discussions thread
dkloi Senior Member • Posts: 1,922
Re: Street photography; Art or voyeurism?

Daniel Lauring wrote:

It seems to me there are two types of street photography. There is the nicely framed pictures that make great use of the natural light and impromptu models to produce gritty, real images. Then there are scads of images where people just hold the camera at hip level and shoot away hoping for something interesting to appear in the pics when they get back to the computer. 99.999% of the time, when they do catch something that might have made a decent photograph it is poorly exposed or taken at some bad angle with noisy distractions in the picture. No thought to composition or what depth of field might work best. No thought about moving to a different spot to create a more interesting or less distracting background. Just shoot, shoot, shoot and then voyeur away back at the computer. Am I missing something? I don't mean to criticize people for a hobby they personally might enjoy but publishing them? Do other people look at these and think, wow, that is a really nice photograph?

Each to their own, I say. There's a whole spectrum of street photography, each type can be done well or badly. There are lots of perfectly exposed, focussed, bokeh-filled boring photos, doesn't necessarily make them any more or less "gritty" than spontaneously shot, from the hip reaction photos.

Street photography is all about observation, some people take things slow and methodically, others have a more free and rapid style. There's enough room in the genre for both and everything in between. What's important in my photography is that there be an interesting image at the end of the process.

All shot "from the hip":


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