From first effort at street.

Started May 9, 2013 | Discussions
Kelpie Regular Member • Posts: 386
From first effort at street.
1

This is my favourite from my first attempt at street photography. I did not feel comfortable taking pictures of people I don't know but have always wanted to try this genre. I hope that the couple in the picture would see the humor in it that I do.

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sigala1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,818
drop the zoom
2

Kelpie wrote:

This is my favourite from my first attempt at street photography. I did not feel comfortable taking pictures of people I don't know but have always wanted to try this genre. I hope that the couple in the picture would see the humor in it that I do.

There's no artistry at all in street photography with a zoom lens. This is just a mediocre candid photo and not street photography.

Use a wide angle. If you are afraid to walk up to people with a camera, then practice with an iPhone first. Then step up to a compact camera like an LX7 (which you can hold easily in one hand and has a silent shutter).

OP Kelpie Regular Member • Posts: 386
Thanks for the feed back.
1

Firstly I don't use apple products and don't claim to be  to be an artist.

I don't understand why a shorter focal length with the same field of view would make any difference.

My understanding of street photography is as an attempt to capture  events and people in the street .

If what I have done is unfair then this is I will take on board.

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OP Kelpie Regular Member • Posts: 386
Re: Thanks for the feed back.

The picture was taken from across the street,  I did not use a zoom.

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Bassam Guy Regular Member • Posts: 415
Re: drop the zoom
7

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

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baggyns Forum Member • Posts: 86
Re: drop the zoom
3

The OP deserves more respect than this.  He said it was his first attempt, I just hope you haven't put him off posting any more.  I make no claims at expertise in street photography but I reserve the right to use whatever equipment I prefer and interpret 'street photography' in any way I choose.  There must be others on this forum who can offer the OP some proper advice so he can improve.

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sigala1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,818
Re: drop the zoom
3

Bassam Guy wrote:

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

"Street photography" has a more specific meaning than a photograph taken of a street or on a street or where you can see a street in the foreground or background.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_photography

sigala1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,818
Re: Thanks for the feed back.
1

Kelpie wrote:

Firstly I don't use apple products and don't claim to be  to be an artist.

I don't understand why a shorter focal length with the same field of view would make any difference.

My understanding of street photography is as an attempt to capture  events and people in the street .

If what I have done is unfair then this is I will take on board.

Street photography is inherently art photography, so the claim was made in the title of the thread.

BingoCharlie Contributing Member • Posts: 849
Re: Thanks for the feed back.
3

It's a good shot.  Consider a tighter crop.  The Prius on the left side kind of sucks the grittiness out of the image.

jimoyer
jimoyer Senior Member • Posts: 1,878
Re: From first effort at street.
2

Nice image.

Don't be put off by certain comments.  Unfortunately around here, people sometimes forget that photography is an art, and as such, is about interpretation.....it means different things to different people....and you sometimes (recently,  it seems rather often) get people who feel their interpretation is the only one.

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Chatokun
Chatokun Regular Member • Posts: 447
Re: Thanks for the feed back.

Kelpie wrote:

Firstly I don't use apple products and don't claim to be  to be an artist.

I don't understand why a shorter focal length with the same field of view would make any difference.

My understanding of street photography is as an attempt to capture  events and people in the street .

If what I have done is unfair then this is I will take on board.

I'm no street photography artist, nor an artist of any kind(despite the deviantart account), but there are some technical aspects of focal lengths that make shooting with different FLs at same FoV different. Check out this page I was randomly reading yesterday. The same shot was taken 4 times from wide angle to telephoto (APS-C 12mm to 200mm, from 18mm to 300mm FF, or 9mm-150 on m43).

Notice the bridge keeps appearing to come closer the more you zoom in, and for the same view, you have less background. So technically speaking, yes, there's a difference.

This can translate into artistic style also, as you may want to have a more expansive background of your subjects. It can give a different feel, a different viewpoint. Whether this different feel or viewpoint is better, I don't know. I don't do street photography, so I can't give full critiques. I will say about yours, however, that a few things feel off.

I'm no pro, no expert, so don't take anything I say next heavily to heart. This is just a feeling I get when looking at the picture as an amateur.

The picture doesn't look level on two different fields. Vertically, it seems you're looking down on them. This is likely both due to the FL and the natural curvature of the street, but it would probably look better as mentioned with a wide angle lens and much closer.

Second, it looks off horizontally. This you can correct in PP, unless it's the view you were going for.

Other than that, the image doesn't jump out too much at me, but don't take that bad... I'm not really that interested in most street photography I see. I tend to prefer nature and people.

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dave rogers Regular Member • Posts: 300
Re: drop the zoom
1

sigala1 wrote:

Bassam Guy wrote:

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

"Street photography" has a more specific meaning than a photograph taken of a street or on a street or where you can see a street in the foreground or background.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_photography

In the immortal words of The Dude: "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man."

Abide.

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larsbc Forum Pro • Posts: 13,980
Re: From first effort at street.

jimoyer wrote:

Nice image.

Don't be put off by certain comments.  Unfortunately around here, people sometimes forget that photography is an art, and as such, is about interpretation.....it means different things to different people....and you sometimes (recently,  it seems rather often) get people who feel their interpretation is the only one.

To be fair, I think the poster you're referring to was voicing his opinion/interpretation, which is what a forum is all about.  The tone might've been a wee bit harsh, perhaps.

On the other hand, he did make some useful suggestions, too.

sigala1 Veteran Member • Posts: 3,818
Re: drop the zoom
5

dave rogers wrote:

sigala1 wrote:

Bassam Guy wrote:

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

"Street photography" has a more specific meaning than a photograph taken of a street or on a street or where you can see a street in the foreground or background.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_photography

In the immortal words of The Dude: "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man."

Abide.

No, it's NOT my opinion, the phrase "street photography" has a generally understood meaning in the fine-art photography community.

It should also be noted that the OP was familiar enough with the existence of the genre to make his photo black and white and name the thread based on the genre, so let's not play dumb here.

larsbc Forum Pro • Posts: 13,980
Sorry, I don't like it

Kelpie wrote:

This is my favourite from my first attempt at street photography. I did not feel comfortable taking pictures of people I don't know but have always wanted to try this genre. I hope that the couple in the picture would see the humor in it that I do.

Compositionally, what is it in this photograph that appeals to you?  Content-wise, what appeals to you?

Myself, I don't see anything in this photo that makes me want to stop and look at it.  Street photography is tough because you're taking photos of strangers, sure.  But what makes it REALLY difficult is that it is about taking well-composed, or interesting, photos of strangers.

People immediately judge landscape photos on their composition.  But they usually give street photos a pass if the photographer managed to clear the uncomfortable hurdle of photographing a stranger.  This is a disservice to street photography, imo.

I don't mean to discourage you, though.  Do keep it up, but don't forget that you still need to search for composition and/or good content.

dave rogers Regular Member • Posts: 300
Re: drop the zoom
6

sigala1 wrote:

dave rogers wrote:

sigala1 wrote:

Bassam Guy wrote:

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

"Street photography" has a more specific meaning than a photograph taken of a street or on a street or where you can see a street in the foreground or background.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_photography

In the immortal words of The Dude: "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man."

Abide.

No, it's NOT my opinion, the phrase "street photography" has a generally understood meaning in the fine-art photography community.

It should also be noted that the OP was familiar enough with the existence of the genre to make his photo black and white and name the thread based on the genre, so let's not play dumb here.

Nobody's playing dumb here. I just did a quick search for "definition of street photography" and found a number of sites discussing the style or genre, none of which make specific demands on focal length, almost all focus on subject matter and interaction between the subject and the photographer (specifically, the lack of it).

If there's some gated community known as "street photography" that permits only specific focal lengths, its zip code is unlisted.

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NZ Scott
NZ Scott Veteran Member • Posts: 4,579
It's NOT a zoom!!
1

sigala1 wrote:

No, it's NOT my opinion, the phrase "street photography" has a generally understood meaning in the fine-art photography community.

It should also be noted that the OP was familiar enough with the existence of the genre to make his photo black and white and name the thread based on the genre, so let's not play dumb here.

And you should be familiar enough with photography to know that the Olympus 75/1.8 is a prime lens - not a zoom lens!

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dave rogers Regular Member • Posts: 300
Re: Sorry, I don't like it

I think the contrasts between the expression on the woman's face, the intimacy of their arm-in-arm configuration, and the oblivious, outwardly directed face of the man makes for an intriguing composition. I would have cropped it for a vertical orientation as mentioned previously.

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larsbc Forum Pro • Posts: 13,980
Re: drop the zoom
2

Bassam Guy wrote:

"Not street photography"? I see a street to the left and a sidewalk in the foreground. What could be more "street"? Please explain to us, he who defines the term "street", how the lens type (zoom/wide/tele) is important. It would be best if you gave us a clear definition and a list so that we can comply.

From Wikipedia:
"Street photography is a genre of photography that features subjects in candid situations within public places and does not necessitate the presence of a street or even the urban environment. 'Street' simply refers to a place where human activity can be seen, a place to observe and capture social interaction. The subject can even be absent of any people and can be that of object or environment where an object projects a human character or an environment is decidedly human.
Framing and timing are key aspects of the craft, with the aim of creating images at a decisive or poignant moment. Alternatively, the street photographer may seek a more prosaic depiction of the scene, as a form of social documentary."

"Street photography produces ironic amusement while documentary provides emotional intensity."

From in-public.com:
"If I were pushed to analyse further the characteristics of contemporary Street Photography it would have to include the following: Firstly, a massive emphasis on the careful selection of those elements to include and exclude from the composition and an overwhelming obsession with the moment selected to make the exposure. These two decisions may at first seem obvious and universal to all kinds of photography, but it is with these two tools alone that the Street Photographer finds or creates the meaning in his images. He has no props or lighting, no time for selecting and changing lenses or filters, he has a split second to recognise and react to a happening."

I think what the OP is lacking in that photo is a depiction of a decisive moment, poignancy, or anything of interest.

I wouldn't go so far as to say that telephotos must not be used, but I will say that virtually all good (imo) street photos I've seen have been taken with short focal lengths.  I think their FOV tends to draw me into the scene and provide more environmental context.

tedolf
tedolf Forum Pro • Posts: 24,141
Not good......

Kelpie wrote:

This is my favourite from my first attempt at street photography. I did not feel comfortable taking pictures of people I don't know but have always wanted to try this genre. I hope that the couple in the picture would see the humor in it that I do.

boring subject, distracting elements on left side, crooked horizon, no theme.

Well, at least you followed the Rule of Thirds!

TEdolph

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