21 Dec 2007

People photography, candid

Are you nervous about photographing people? Do you feel as if you are intruding when you point your camera at someone? Yes? Well you are not alone. One of the subjects we tackle on the photography holidays in Menorca is ‘people’. It is the subject most of my students say they are most nervous about.

I explain that it is important to realise that you are not just ‘taking’ when you point a camera at someone. You can also ‘give’ a great deal too.

It is possible to make a subject feel special if you go about it in the right way, and I’ll be giving you lots of tips in the future.

By the end of the week in Menorca, I can guarantee that most of the photographers in the group will be a people photography addicts. It’s not for everyone, but once you overcome your inhibitions about taking pictures of complete strangers, it can be tremendously liberating… and it can certainly produce some fantastic photographs.

Once you have been spotted taking someone’s photograph. DO NOT drop the camera like a hot potato. Keep your camera to your eye and keep taking pictures. It is so often the response to being photographed that makes a wonderful picture. Very, very rarely will subjects become angry when they spot a camera pointing at them. If they do, lower the camera, hold up your hands and SMILE. With practise, you will soon learn where NOT to point a camera.

It was his response to spotting my telephoto lens pointing at him that produced the extraordinary expression on the farmer’s face when I photographed him at a sheep sale.

1 comment:

altamiranyc said...

I had to laugh when I read the part about dropping the camera like a hot potato.