Are you addicted to “say cheese” being an amateur photographer? How about switching over to creating some candid moments with that same device of yours? Wondering what I really mean to say! I am talking about some serious photography – Street Photography. Capturing the true human emotions in unguarded moments strewn on the streets, parks, wedding halls, concerts and bus or train stations is Street Photography.
If you are an amateur at photography so what? Street Photography is not about technicalities of photography, but about encapsulating life through the technical device. What a canvas does to a painter’s vision, the camera holds for a Street Photographer’s roving eye. Street Photographers do not have a daily schema to work on. They are driven by the enthusiasm of discovering everyday something new on the streets which are paraded up and down by thousands regularly. They are eternal travelers whose camera can form a scrap book of the myriad human sentiments. It is just the photographer and the camera at work connected together like conjoined twins creating magic with every other click. There is no need for any other external source between the two. Tripods, lenses, filters, lights prove useless in Street Photography. With “chin up, look in the camera” instructions only a pose can be captured, but not the life in it. It is that fleeting moment which if arrested dot-on-time matters and not the light or its source. The human expression changes with every passing second and with that human activity. All of it can be grabbed by the camera only if the photographer is invisible to its natural surroundings and good with its reflexes.
Street Photography thrives on slices from human lives. Therefore a street photographer has to make careful selection of the elements to include and those to exclude from his selection which are mere overwhelming obsessions. It is this factor which brings life to the otherwise still photographs. In the absence of props, lighting and time to change filters, a photographer has to react extempore before the precious moment gets lost forever. Not just the moment, but at times the photographer himself senses ‘loss of self’ with an emotionally involving act of others. A Street Photographer needs to be highly empathetic towards its subject matter, but at the same time maintaining a safe distance so as not to get carried away by the reactions. Many Street Photographers engross their photography with incidents that generate instant emotional responses like humour. A string of street photographs may portray a mad world with surreal occurrences. To unleash the world you need not run to war-torn, famished or terrorized places. The most fascinating photographs can be taken in the most real and happening places of everyday life, that is, on the streets.
Street Photography holds a mirror to the society by concentrating on single human moments arrested at a decisive, poignant instant. It stimulates the mind to think beyond the most evident. It is a personal rendition of a plethora of unnoticed flashes documented by the photographer for the ages to come. Are you assuming serendipity a synonym for Street Photography? It is not chance alone, but a keen eye with an emotional brain and deft hands holding the camera which create the street magic on paper. If you choose Street Photography, you are bound to get addicted by the candidness of it.