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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Shooting Street People
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09/20/2006 10:07:06 AM · #1
Originally posted by virtuamike:

Go for it. Here's some inspiration -
boogie


Powerful stuff here.
09/20/2006 08:33:43 AM · #2
That Sisters of The Road, sounds like a nice idea and you'll toughen your skin...build armour, just by asking to take these pictures. Each and every contact will make you stronger. It's a strange but rewarding experience and you will get better at it over time.

Since these organizations are always looking for donations you have a perfect opportunity to offer your work in support of what they do and having heart warming, portraits of their clients, is the best way for them to raise awareness and funds.

Good Luck and please post some of what you get.
09/20/2006 01:14:57 AM · #3
Thanks for all the wonderful, well thought out and brilliantly articulated advice, you guys.

I should clarify: when I said "Street People" I wasn't refering to only the homeless and downtrodden. I was refering to ANYONE and everyone out in public, in the streets or parks, whether it be a woman sipping coffee at an outdoor cafe or a mother and child having a tender moment, a man on his way to a business meeting with his eyebrow knit in concentration, a skateboarder with a purple mohawk, a tough looking tattooed man in a kilt, a guy in a frog suit on stilts, a baby petting a dog for the first time, whatever it may be. My reason is simple: I love reality: candid, authentic, raw moments in everyday (and not so everyday life). I love to share them and I love when they are shared with me. Photography is an amazing thing, isn't it? We can capture these little moments in time... moments other people would never get to see if it weren't for the camera and the eye of the beholder! It gets me so JAZZED!!!

I think what i'll do for the downtown Portland people is get some coupons to this cafe in town called Sisters of the Road that caters to the low income folks (I think they even let people work there for their meals) and I'll offer a food coupon to someone after I've taken their picture... I won't do cigarettes because I don't want to contribute to any addiction.

Thanks again, y'all... and to my fellow Portlanders: INVITATIONS ACCEPTED! I would love to meet you and go on a photo safari! you can e-mail me at kellyinportland@yahoo.com.
09/19/2006 09:20:32 PM · #4
What The Duck's commentary on these types of shots
09/19/2006 09:06:31 PM · #5
Oh no... not that again...well, might as well consider this thread dead.
09/19/2006 09:04:19 PM · #6
Originally posted by fotomann_forever:

Just a reminder:

Street people are humans with the same basic needs as all us. That inclues:

A need for privacy and space.
A need for a sense of dignity.

When needs are not being met, or when needs are being revoked by others, humans can act out in unexpected ways. So, for the sake of your subject and the safety of your self, please be respectful of your intended subjects.


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On the topic of senses, this image offended all of mine, including my sense of smell.

...but who am I to judge?

;)
09/19/2006 06:09:44 PM · #7
Just a reminder:

Street people are humans with the same basic needs as all us. That inclues:

A need for privacy and space.
A need for a sense of dignity.

When needs are not being met, or when needs are being revoked by others, humans can act out in unexpected ways. So, for the sake of your subject and the safety of your self, please be respectful of your intended subjects.

Message edited by author 2006-09-19 18:10:29.
09/19/2006 05:43:31 PM · #8
I also live in Portland and love to walk the streets and take candids of all sorts of people.
My trick is fairly simple. Just find something in the general direction and distance of what you want to shoot and, using manual focus and a high shutter speed, focus on that. I generally choose a crack in the sidewalk. Then just pan and shoot as you pass.
In theory, I agree that permission would be nice but seldom will you get the same shot, the one that catches that moment's reality that got your attention in the first place.

Message edited by author 2006-09-19 17:45:44.
09/19/2006 05:35:28 PM · #9
sometimes it helps when u dont think before u push that button

today i walked into this scene
an obviously proffesional photographer was busy getting a groupshot of the local menchoir
actually i was getting some shots of the pavement and such but when i passed this scene i couldnt resist to steal an image and so the next moment i caused about a hundred&twenty eyes looking at my person instead of looking direction the pro
i really didnt realize the moment i raised my little cam it would spoil at least ten minutes of hard work of the poor man trying to get every person exactly in the position he wanted and looking direction his cam
later on i made it all up 'cause they needed a stand in for someone who didnt show up and after the session the chairman even came to thank me ;)

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09/19/2006 05:29:00 PM · #10
I like shooting candid street pictures. It's difficult to do and not get slapped. Especially as a male. But i love the unpredictable results.
Here is a link to a shoot i did in Glasgow over 1 day.

On the streets of Glasgow

Kev


Message edited by author 2006-09-19 17:33:21.
09/19/2006 05:27:16 PM · #11
Interesting thread...just found the site

As a portland native, I would advise to be careful photographing street people...A photographer for the willamette weekly recently was assaulted doing a gig in north portland, he took a picture of a guy who turned out to be unstable, guy trashed his camera and knocked a tooth out...99% of the time its ok, but something to keep in mind.

I havnt tried street candids in Portland, but I did in NYC last year. I have a 12-24 superwide...set the zoom to around 16(on a 1.6 crop camera) and used shutter priority to account for movement. I then shot from the hip and got people as I was walking by. I wasnt focusing on street people, simply interesting people in Manhatten. I had to get the hang of how to hold the camera, but overal I was very pleased with the results. However, it was doable in Manhatten since it was so crowded most of the time and the shutter wasnt really audible over the ambient noise...so mileage may vary

heres a link to some of the pictures
//www.roosevelt.pps.k12.or.us/rhs/act/tech/stock/NYC/people1/index.htm

dont know if any of that helps at all
09/19/2006 05:25:11 PM · #12
Originally posted by pawdrix:

Originally posted by virtuamike:

Again, we're shooting people, not birds. They're not going to bite and stab you. Some interaction wouldn't hurt, especially if you're trying to get any meaning through in your shots.


Ya think?


...they might show you their weenie...eh Steve? ;)
09/19/2006 05:07:11 PM · #13
Originally posted by virtuamike:

Again, we're shooting people, not birds. They're not going to bite and stab you. Some interaction wouldn't hurt, especially if you're trying to get any meaning through in your shots.


Ya think?

09/19/2006 04:59:48 PM · #14
I think shooting street people is a bit cruel and against the law. Maybe you could just take thier picture or something.
09/19/2006 04:51:14 PM · #15
Originally posted by Tej:

Another Tip with works when clicking people on street -

Take a friend of yours when you go shooting on streets. Make him/her pose for you in front of your subject on street. Pretend as if your friend is your subject for photograph while you actually focus on the “real” subject of your interest (with zoom lens offcourse). This will not make the person (who you are clicking actually) conscious of camera and you will get much better photos … and off-course it is safer also.

Sorry for deviating from the current discussion, but I think this fits the “theme” of the thread (if not the flow) :)


Again, we're shooting people, not birds. They're not going to bite and stab you. Some interaction wouldn't hurt, especially if you're trying to get any meaning through in your shots.
09/19/2006 03:18:13 PM · #16
Originally posted by skiprow:

however, for a project such as this to have any impact, it has to be published or produced, either in articles, in a gallery display, or in a publicized website. if they aren't where they can be seen, they have no impact...

This is what I was trying to say but you said it a lot better - thanks
09/19/2006 08:26:38 AM · #17
Originally posted by BradP:

Originally posted by obsidian:

skiprow, you are so right about the need for an effective narrative to go along with the images. While it would be great for the images to speak for themselves you oftentimes need to set them in context in order for them to make the maximum impact. One of the things I did think about was asking the programme itself if they had any themes that they wanted to explore. Could be interesting.

An image should tell tell a story on it's own.
A narrative to accompany it can certainly add a lot.

most definitely, an image should be able to stand on its own. i've mentioned before that the best compliment i've heard of a photojournalist was that 'his images caption themselves'. however, for a project such as this to have any impact, it has to be published or produced, either in articles, in a gallery display, or in a publicized website. if they aren't where they can be seen, they have no impact...
09/19/2006 08:18:53 AM · #18
Originally posted by obsidian:

skiprow, you are so right about the need for an effective narrative to go along with the images. While it would be great for the images to speak for themselves you oftentimes need to set them in context in order for them to make the maximum impact. One of the things I did think about was asking the programme itself if they had any themes that they wanted to explore. Could be interesting.

An image should tell tell a story on it's own.
A narrative to accompany it can certainly add a lot.
09/19/2006 08:08:48 AM · #19
yes, the following will allow you to get shots...
Originally posted by Tej:

Another Tip with works when clicking people on street -

Take a friend of yours when you go shooting on streets. Make him/her pose for you in front of your subject on street. Pretend as if your friend is your subject for photograph while you actually focus on the “real” subject of your interest (with zoom lens offcourse). This will not make the person (who you are clicking actually) conscious of camera and you will get much better photos … and off-course it is safer also.

Sorry for deviating from the current discussion, but I think this fits the “theme” of the thread (if not the flow) :)

but what's the purpose of getting the shots?
09/19/2006 08:07:17 AM · #20
...and some, like this guy, i shoot first, talk later.

i gave him something after the shot (which was completely candid). i csn't remember what i gave him though. hmm... think it was $.
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09/19/2006 06:43:11 AM · #21
Another Tip with works when clicking people on street -

Take a friend of yours when you go shooting on streets. Make him/her pose for you in front of your subject on street. Pretend as if your friend is your subject for photograph while you actually focus on the “real” subject of your interest (with zoom lens offcourse). This will not make the person (who you are clicking actually) conscious of camera and you will get much better photos … and off-course it is safer also.

Sorry for deviating from the current discussion, but I think this fits the “theme” of the thread (if not the flow) :)
09/19/2006 06:37:25 AM · #22
skiprow, you are so right about the need for an effective narrative to go along with the images. While it would be great for the images to speak for themselves you oftentimes need to set them in context in order for them to make the maximum impact. One of the things I did think about was asking the programme itself if they had any themes that they wanted to explore. Could be interesting.
09/19/2006 06:09:08 AM · #23
Originally posted by e301:

A model release is only required if you're using the image for more than reportage purposes; obviously, even in Germany, journalistic use does not require a release.

e

in the us, the release is only required for commercial photography (ie, works used for the promotion of business). there are some noticeable exceptions. a photographer can display images in their portfolio, website, studio, and studio window without a release; however, they cannot produce printed collateral of images without a model release.

another major exception is for artwork, which is protected by the first amendment. here's an article related to that.

the bolding below is mine.
Originally posted by obsidian:

PS I am very tempted to ask my daughter to ask in her programme as to whether I could do a photo study of these guys. My motivation would be to capture the spirit and the issues facing the clients of the programme and gather photographic images to help explain their plight to the rest of society. To be honest, I am a little afraid to ask as I fear the responsibility of taking on such an assignment, although I have never shirked from a challenge before. The downer for me is that I have a dreadful fear of needles and injections... bummer!

yes, these are good intentions, and your daughter could help you get such a project on track. i would think, though, for such a project to be ultimately successful, it needs to have a complete plan, something that deals with the utilization of the images. if you can't write, find a freelance writer who you can collaborate with on an article. talk to the charities and foundations that support the program and find out if they need/want new imagery (you might find that they have very specific guidelines about what they'll allow to be photographed). you might want to hunt down the photographers who have produced some of these images and find out what they went through to capture the images they had published. the point is, even with good intentions, it's often a bit more involved than having a camera and a good idea. you're on the right track--good luck!

Message edited by author 2006-09-19 06:09:24.
09/19/2006 05:57:40 AM · #24
Originally posted by obsidian:

PS I am very tempted to ask my daughter to ask in her programme as to whether I could do a photo study of these guys. My motivation would be to capture the spirit and the issues facing the clients of the programme and gather photographic images to help explain their plight to the rest of society. To be honest, I am a little afraid to ask as I fear the responsibility of taking on such an assignment, although I have never shirked from a challenge before. The downer for me is that I have a dreadful fear of needles and injections... bummer!


Go for it. Here's some inspiration -
boogie

Message edited by author 2006-09-19 05:58:04.
09/19/2006 05:28:17 AM · #25
In another thread I commented on the problems I have had with taking pictures of street people, mostly because it seemed an affront to their dignity - or the vestiges of what is left of it. This thread has offered some interesting insights into how people overcome some of the obstacles I have faced in the past.

I was talking about this to my daughter who works as part of one of the largest drug rehabilitation programmes in the UK. As part of the work she does she gets to meet all sorts of people that could be regarded as part of society's under ground, non people in some ways. The stories she tells about those folk are often almost too incredible to take on board and yet, for many of them, these people are trying to rebuild their lives and move on from where they are.

But some of them are unstable, although they look perfectly "normal" in that they blend-in well. These guys are prone to violent outbursts when they feel that they are being singled out in some way, more so when their "hit" is fading and they are in need of another. Trouble is, you cannot tell by looking at them if they are prone to this behaviour.

So, be careful out there as all is not what it seems! :-)

Carl

PS I am very tempted to ask my daughter to ask in her programme as to whether I could do a photo study of these guys. My motivation would be to capture the spirit and the issues facing the clients of the programme and gather photographic images to help explain their plight to the rest of society. To be honest, I am a little afraid to ask as I fear the responsibility of taking on such an assignment, although I have never shirked from a challenge before. The downer for me is that I have a dreadful fear of needles and injections... bummer!
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