Thursday, April 25, 2013

Canon G1X, The Street and the Cool Guy


I notice many photographers trying to be street-style photographers, but are neglecting one of the most useful traits of a street shooter: discretion. We don't have to be invisible, like a paparazzi stealing images across the street, or like a sniper-photographer trying to shoot a polar bear and her cubs. However, it's good to blend in. 

If we're in the hipster part of town, look reasonably hip. If we're walking down alleyways in the shady part of town, don't be wearing bright and expensive looking clothes.  If we're on an average street, don't have "photographer" written over our heads by wearing a photo-vest, two bodies around our neck, a huge camera bag, a mono-pod and an 80-200 F2.8 lens (with hood) on the biggest full-frame body we could afford with a vertical control grip for good measure.  It's very hard to get good shots looking like that. I know it makes us look more professional, but it won't help get better images...in fact, it usually detract us by causing undue attention to us and our equipment. 

This is why I prefer shooting with smaller cameras, never carry a tripod or monopod, and rarely use a camera strap (hold the camera in your hand, always ready to shoot and move on quickly and discretely). The Canon G1X is as big as I want to go, as I can easily carry it in one hand, and people rarely notice me shooting with it, even when the camera is almost in their face. If they do notice me, I make myself like a tourist and most go on their way and ignore me...

I was hanging out along Granville Street and was playing with Color Accent Mode. As per usual, I saved Coca-Cola red and +5 sensitivity and started shooting people as they walked past.  I find it productive to stand in one spot and concentrate on composition. Allow people to walk into your frame instead of chasing after them. I noticed a cool guy with a cool strut walking towards me and so I made sure I was ready as he passed by.  As he approached, I made it look like I was shooting the posters, just like a tourist might.  Thank you cool guy for looking so natural. Thank you Coca-Cola Red. I don't drink you, but I sure like your patented colour!!

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