I’ve been working my way through some (not all) of my photos and pulling out all those that (although at the time were not intended to be such) can be loosely called ‘street shots’. Unless I am deliberately taking a picture of my family, I don’t tend to take any shots of other people per se, but if you visit somewhere such as York, which is a very VERY popular tourist attraction, you can’t very well capture the essence of the place without including the milling crowds of shoppers, day visitors and tourists.
In fact York lends itself as an ideal place to shoot some ‘street shots’ in my opinion simply because if you are focusing on this type of shot, there are several advantages to shooting them in York. (Or other towns/cities which are very similar to it.)
The reasons why I think this are simple. Because its a tourist spot, every man and his dog walks around with a camera. Therefore no one even notices you as you snap away. You tend to be completely ignored. Most of the streets are very narrow, thereby creating an ideal situation where you have complete strangers having to brush past one another in close proximity to each other. The lovely shops at each side also help to set the scene, they can tend to create some stunning ‘sidebars’ to all the movement of people taking place in between.
You get shoppers, visitors and tourists tending to look either left or right at the shops on either side as they walk along. Of course you also get people lolling or stopping for a drink etc. Some do see you taking your snap, but I have never ever been approached by anyone about including them (even accidentally) in a shot. . Both of these shots I am publishing inside this blog post are taken in York, the first one at Christmas, the second one in the summer.. I would be taking the street as a whole and not the people contained therein. They were not the focus of the shot at the time.
My youngest son marching on as always is in shot on quite a few of them. Again, not because I was taking a shot of him in particular, but simply because his legs are longer than mine and he is always marching on in front of us whenever he accompanies us anywhere.
Now that I have focused on changing them into black and white ‘street scenes’ its strange how I have been able to look at them all differently and take far more notice of the people I captured, however accidental, just for that brief moment in time as they appeared in shot as I took the picture. A face looking at me. A couple laughing and talking as they stroll by. A woman walking along taking a drag of her cigarette as she pushes her child in a buggy.
Some were taken in summer and therefore have different shadows and lighting to those taken in winter time. It’s been an interesting exercise for me, and I intend to sort out some others to add to these. Places in the photos are York, Edinburgh, Bath, Whitehaven and Carlisle. They will be added on flickr and my SkyDrive as Street shots.
All black and white effects added to these photos were applied using only Windows Live Photo Gallery. More black and white street shots visible on the right.