Archivi categoria: street

Is Street Photography Killing Itself?

Is the most egalitarian form of photography, ‘street photography’, being destroyed by its own popularity? Is such a thing even possible? I won’t profess to have a clear answer to this question, but I do have some thoughts. Those thoughts may turn into a rant, but I’ll try to contain myself!

Egalitarian = good, right?

This question hits right at the heart of photography and, most specifically, digital photography. If something is easy, more people will do it. The more people doing it, the more ‘cultivated talent’ there will be (which is a good thing). However, there can be a cost: the dross can become overwhelming.

Street photography is easy for everyone to engage in. If you have a camera and are able to access public areas, you can shoot street photography. While this sounds great, I can’t help but feel something of a massacre is taking place. Cameras have become optical machine guns, mowing down everyone and everything with carefree abandon.

The problem, as I see it, is exacerbated by a particular catalyst: for want of a better word, it is ‘cool’. When something is fashionable in this way, the self-image can become the real target, rather than the photograph itself.

So what has ‘coolness’ done for street photography?

It has clouded judgment, that’s what it has done. Some photographers evidently struggle to see past their excitement at indulging in this fountain of cool. Twenty years ago, to pull this off, you had to tote a film camera around and go through all the palava of changing rolls, developing them, faffing with lightboxes, checking contact sheets and making prints. If a person was prepared to go through all of this inglorious hassle, there was a very good chance they were reaching a bit deeper, within and without.

Now, in the digital age, you can buy the right ‘stealth satchel’, blaze away and saturate Instagram and Flickr within hours. At no point in this process will you have to consider the merits of the photographs being taken, because it doesn’t matter. You’re a rock and roll street sniper. At least a landscape photographer has to deal with bad weather, muddy feet and uncooperative light to get his or her shots and that obstacle of effort acts as a filter.

When it’s raining, the street ninja just slides into Starbucks and takes 482 photographs of coffee cups, tables, people’s feet, the window, people walking past the window, people tying their shoe laces… and they’re all painfully boring. Sadly, this garbage is overflowing into the street so to speak. The visible face of popular photography is more and more being defined by street photography, when we’re not being overwhelmed by photos of people’s dinner on social media.

Why could this be bad?

The good street photography is being buried, that’s why. It is more difficult than it should be to find consistently good street photography taken by someone without an already well-known name. The work is out there, I have no doubt of that, but the process of finding it is exhausting and depressing. There also seems to be a bit too much ego in the mix. Far too many of these (often very young) photographers seem unwilling to learn. They’re already amazing, which they know, because that’s what they tell each other continuously on social media. They also have lots of ‘likes’, so that’s that.

On the occasions when I have seen really good photographs on Instagram/Facebook groups, the inspiring work barely gets a mention. Nobody cares. That’s not what social media is about and street photography has become the social media of photography: an avalanche of banal, shallow and unreflective nothing that hasn’t the time to consider its own context. Tell a lie often enough and it becomes the truth. In the same way, much of this ‘great street photography’ is, well, the new great.

Editing. What is that?

Too many street photographers don’t edit. They share everything, perhaps because they think the world wants to know what fifty different takes of groups of random people walking down the street looks like at 8:56 in the morning, on their way into work. I applaud the enthusiasm, but photography is like selling your house. You show the best bits, while trying to avoid scrutiny of the bad bits.

You put your junk into the loft, or carefully pack cupboards. You mow the lawn, give a lick of paint to that beautiful front door and make sure your new kitchen is sparkling. The whole point is to draw attention to the good bits and let them define your house as a proposition. You curate the impression you want to leave people with. What you don’t do is give them a guided tour of the junk pile corner of your garden, the rotten window frame you’ve meant to replace and then hand them a map of the broken floor tiles.

When you’re Magnum Photos, you can put out a book full of contact sheets when most of the photographers who took those hugely iconic images are dead! Everyone else is better off editing at least until it hurts.

Endless juxtapositions and their formulaic brethren

Visual juxtapositions are akin to a trick that can be performed according to recipe. They are cookie cutter photographs that deliver all of their impact (if they have any at all) in no more time than it takes to mentally identify the game. A boot on a poster steps on a passing pedestrian’s head. The man standing at a bus stop is being shouted at by a woman on a billboard.

See, you didn’t even need a photo to experience all that such photographs contain: a simple, boring, endlessly repeated ‘jingle’. You could only ever write one short line about such photographs, because they contain nothing beyond the superficial.

Some photographers have built entire series (in fact entire websites) crammed full of variations of the same thing. They’re no more interesting than ‘zonies’ obsessed with Ansel Adams’ Zone System, who 20 years ago produced endless photographs of tree stumps and sticks that showed how wonderfully they’d applied -3 compensation development. My personal hit list goes something like this:

Juxtapositions. If they say nothing and have no appeal beyond their initial visual recognition, they’re boring. Really boring. Even the ‘good ones’.

Juxtapositions are almost ALL the same. This is a quick screen grab after google searching ‘street photography juxtaposition’.

Random photos of nothing, for no reason, with no content, thought, insight or anything. They’re not so casual as to be cool. They’re just boring.

Faux edginess. People being made to look mean, when they aren’t. Intensity that has been added in Photoshop, or with a pithy title that over-eggs the pudding. Their landscape photography equivalents are the ones shot in Yosemite (or similar) during evidently pleasant weather, that have been heavily over-cooked in post, and then titled ‘_____, Clearing Winter Storm’.

Arrows and street signs. OK, so there is always going to be potential here. Never say never and all that, but I wish I could erase memory of every photo like the one below I have seen and wish I could un-see.

So what do you think about these photographs?

Note: These following street photos are being shared under fair use for commentary and critique. The names of the photographers have been omitted to not single any artist out in a negative way. Anyone who wishes to have their photo removed will have their request respected immediately.

What can you say about this photograph? Is there anything to say?
Posting a letter. Am I missing something?
Waiting for a bus. Is the appeal in her age? If so, where is this going?
The hand/scarf over her face does not make this photo any less banal.
The most overused street photography formula of them all: arrow with person going the wrong way. I don’t see anything here to elevate this image beyond formula.
Is this photo truly compelling because of the black and white theme?
Does this work? If so, why? I see an initial ‘edginess’ replaced by nothing (along with the realization that there isn’t actually an edge)
Everyone hates a mop handle in the eye. Is this an aspirational photo? If so, why? The ‘punchline’ is paper thin.
We see many images like this. Is there supposed to be humour in the sleeping man? Is there something else going on that I am just not seeing?

What goes in comes out

Really engaging photographs are never the product of laziness, or formula, but this does not mean it should be hard work either. “Endeavor” is perhaps the best term. If we put in effort (and some thought) we can generally produce photographs worth more than a quick glance. That does not mean waiting for all of two minutes until a man of the right height walks past a poster depicting a large open mouth. Such photos are simply the free version of buying a ticket to Yosemite and placing your tripod in the exact spot ‘Clearing Winter Storm’ was taken 75 years earlier. It’s easy. It requires no real effort, thought or (most importantly) personal investment.

I am not suggesting a hipster coffee approach here. Riding to the Andes on a unicycle to collect the coffee does not make it taste any different. Working your ass off in photography without that effort actually affecting your photographs is no different. However, just engaging in the subject of photography helps. Learning a little more about yourself helps. Learning about the people and environment around you and your thoughts and reactions to it helps. The sad truth is that most of our effort in photography amounts to nothing. We’ve all worked hard and come back with a slew of entirely disappointing images, but this does not mean we stop trying.

Street photography is fantastic and compelling, but it is also incredibly difficult to do well. In part, this is because we have seen so much of it before. Brilliant, obsessive workaholics have been doing it for 70 years, but they aren’t us. They haven’t had our experiences. They haven’t seen everything through the same eyes. Their insights are not ours. Every single person wielding a camera has the potential to say something interesting, or see something engaging. Again, it comes down to relationships and, even on the street, our relationship with what is in front of the camera is key.

Once a photographer has learned a few ‘tricks’, they are presented with a choice: keep chasing gimmicks or formulas, or look deeper. It’s OK to be lost. It’s OK not to know what you’re doing. It’s OK to fail. It’s absolutely fine to feel insecure about your work. In fact, all of these things are very cool because they state very loudly that a person is trying, striving, exploring and searching in a very personal sense…. call it what you will.

It is this highly individual engagement that makes photography interesting. Street photographs needn’t take that away. It isn’t an altar that photographers must worship beneath and it isn’t a sport either. Some years ago I read a passage in a men’s magazine advising young men not to approach their sexual endeavors in the same way as they might improvements to their sporting performance. And here we are back to the supreme importance of relationships, expression and connection. Without these things, both just become repetitive, predictable acts that lose their luster.


The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.


About the author: After studying Biological Sciences at Bristol University, Thomas served in the British Army before spending fifteen years living and photographing in conflict zones as a civilian. His work has won numerous international awards and has been exhibited in the UK, US, Europe. You can find more of his work and writing on his website and The Photo Fundamentalist. This article was also published here.

This Photographer Walked Over 2,200 Miles in the World’s Biggest Cities

In 2015, photographer David Gaberle walked over 2,200 miles (3,600 kilometers) through some of the world’s most metropolitan areas, photographing people in cities such as New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Sydney, London and Seoul. He’s now turning this project into a book titled Metropolight.

Seoul

Samuel Zeller: When did you first know you wanted to be a photographer? How did you start in photography?

David Gaberle: I started in 2012 and it took about two months between picking up the camera and knowing in my heart that I do not want to do anything else in my life.

I was overwhelmed by the sensual stimuli in the city’s public spaces at the time, and the camera helped me reduce the amount of information.

I think of horses in cities, with the eye-caps on to prevent them from freaking out about all the busyness around them. The camera has the same function for me – it allows me to focus.

Hong-Kong

How did the idea of Metropolight emerge?

That definitely came from my anthropological education – we were reading a lot of writers whose work revolved around cities, like George Simmel or Walter Benjamin, and it kind of completed the puzzle in my head. It gave me a theoretical framework to conceptualize what I have been experiencing for a while.

The word Metropolight hints at a relationship between someone who lives in a large city, the light, and the urban structures that make up the built environment we move through.

Tokyo

You said that photography saved you, can you tell us a bit more?

At the time when I started shooting, I was going through a very anxious period in my life. I struggled with overcrowded places – a very busy street or a subway train were overwhelming for me. Looking through the viewfinder made things a lot easier because there weren’t so many options of what to focus on. I needed that tunnel vision at that point in my life. It also gave me a purpose. I don’t really want to do anything else but take photos.

Berlin

For how long have you been using Fujifilm cameras and why did you choose this brand in particular?

The first camera I started to shoot with a lot was the Fujifilm X100. I loved it because it let me get close to people. It’s a very non-invasive camera and the leaf shutter is basically silent, which allowed me to photograph situations I wouldn’t otherwise dare getting into, especially if I had a DSLR in my hands.

I’ve gone through a lot of the X-Series models since then and am currently shooting with the Fujifilm X-Pro2. I might get a Fujifilm X-T2 soon. I’m a big fan of how intuitive the cameras feel and how well the photos come right out of it.

I don’t spend much time post-processing, so whatever makes my job easier is a plus.

Tokyo

What have you learned in the process of making the Metropolight book?

I think the biggest challenge but also possibly the most fun thing was putting the photos together – selecting the best ones out of the tens of thousands I have, creating diptychs that I like, and sequencing them in a way that makes sense and has a narrative to it. I loved doing that, but it was the first time I did it to such extent, so I learnt a lot on how to pair up photos, when to make breaks and put just a single photo, and hopefully how to keep the audience’s attention from beginning to end.

London

If you could give one piece of advice to photographers who want to make a book about their work, what would it be?

I would definitely suggest working on the photos for a while before putting a book out. Don’t rush it, take your time and shoot as much as you can. Once you feel like you have enough photos that you want to show, sit down with it and start working on the sequencing of the book. Always think of the weakest photos in the sequence and see if you can do without them. I am a big fan of showing less photos – don’t let the weaker shots taint the rest.

Hong-Kong

Where can we pre-order Metropolight?

You can currently pre-order a copy through the Kickstarter campaign here. Once it’s over and funded, I will set up a way to buy it through my website. In between the two, people can just message me on Facebook and we will figure it out from there.

Where can we see more of your work?

On my portfolio, but also on my Instagram and on Facebook.


About the author: Samuel Zeller is a freelance photographer based in Switzerland, an ambassador for Fujifilm, and the editor of Fujifeed magazine. You can contact him here and follow his recent work here. This article was also published here.

Storytelling in Street Photography

Many street photography tutorials discuss the same topics over and over—focussing techniques, composition, candid shooting, etc. However, I believe that one topic is underrepresented: storytelling.

Many composition principles in street photography are the same as in other kinds of photography. In addition, there needs to be some additional element of interest in the scene as well—an attention grabber. I mentioned in a previous post that, for example, Joel Meyerowitz’s key idea is relations.

In “Life of a Child“, I tried to express this element of relation. In belief, storytelling in street photography is another element of interest often overlooked.

Storytelling in Street Photography

Stories are sometimes subtile and covered by more prominent features, such as light or composition. Sometimes, however, stories are told very strongly, as with the famous picture V-J Day in Times Square by Alfred Eisenstaedt.

This picture is an excellent example of storytelling in street photography, as it is not very emphasized in many composition principles; yet still it has become one of the most iconic street photographs of all times. This can mostly be attributed to the story behind and around the picture that unfolds in the mind of the viewer. I would argue that some of the most famous street photographs have become famous because they tell a strong story and not because of their composition.

Not all stories require much action. In fact, the lack of action in a shot can sometimes open up the storytelling space for the viewer. “Old Man and the Sea 2” tries to achieve exactly this. By omitting the action, the photograph provides more possibilities for interpretation—it is opening up for storylines to unfold.

Photojournalism and Storytelling

Is street photography a form of photojournalism of the everyday life? Can one compose an image by directing the subject? I think there are no right and wrong answers. They will strongly depend on whether one wants to represent undiluted and honest every day life. In fact, as we know from photojournalism, already the framing (what to include, what to leave out), the perspective (from below, from above) the film type etc. represent a selection of the truth—one that the photographer sees and/or want to convey.

The viewer will, in addition, make her own selection and add her own phantasies. The final story imagined is probably a different one than the one shot. I guess, one has to go with what feels right. Most of the time I shoot candidly. But when opportunity arises, and the idea for a story emerges, I might get in touch with the subject and direct her or him. I discuss this in more detail here.

The final image then should on the one hand tell a story, while at the same time leave some space for imagination.

Storytelling Elements

The photographer can play with different storytelling elements. Below, I discuss a few alongside some examples from my portfolio. The list of storytelling elements can by no means be exhaustive but only illustrative, to give photographers some ideas for their own projects.

Key story line – All pictures that contain people contain also story lines. Some are quite clear, others are sidelines. The key story line is of course the prevalent one. The protagonist(s) in a photograph around which other storylines converge.

In the picture above, the two lovers are clearly the protagonists. The others play only a secondary role.

Process or Outcome – One can show a process or one can show the outcome. There are different reasons to pick either of them.

If the process in itself is very interesting (tying shoes isn’t), and one wants the audience not to miss the details in the production process, the former is a good choice. If one picks the outcome, then the process is subsumed. This one the one hand gives the viewer the opportunity to see the product, to tell him or herself the story of what the process might have been. It, however, also opens up the image for more story lines that one is distracted from when the process is in focus.

For example, would I have picked any of the photographs in which the woman in “the comfy shoes” is in the process of tying her shoes, the prominent story would be “ah, she is tying her comfy shoes, her feet must hurt from the high heels”. Picking the ended process, the present image allows other less prominent story lines to come forward: “ah, shoes (check); where is she looking, probably she is watching other people, or is she thinking, she does look very serious; why is she going home alone, oh, she is looking serious, might have to do with that, etc.”

The story that unfolds in the viewer’s head when action is not too dominant can sometimes make a picture with finished processes even more interesting.

Protagonist, antagonist, relationship – Some photographs come to life from the relationship they portray. This could be an antagonistic relationship, a friendship, or simply a correspondence.

Relationships require at least two subjects. But more than two subjects are also possible, of course. The facial expressions can also add to the storyline. For example, in “See Saw” below, the girl in the air is clearly excited and surprised. The lower girl’s expression shows determination.

In order to enhance the tension between the depicted relation, one can look for contrasts and connects in the picture and also in the subjects that one pics.

The two subjects in “Absence” create a tension through many elements: their backs are facing; one is white, one black, and they are dressed in opposite colours. At the same time they are connected through sitting on the same bench and both being immersed in their literature.

Emotions – Happiness, sadness, boredom, anger, frustration, all these emotions make very interesting subjects of a street photograph and add to the storyline. They can be seen as shortcuts of storytelling as emotions immediately unfold in a story. Furthermore, emotions empathically engage the viewer (much more than nondescript expressions of random shots of pedestrians).

Archetypes, virtues and vices represent some of the most prominent storytelling elements. The last picture illustrates motherhood, for example. In addition, we have the girl’s courage and curiosity. Particularly journalism photography centres around archetypes, virtues, and vices, as they are universally recognisable and have a strong effect on the viewer.

For example, Joe Rosenthal’s 1945 “Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima” or “Tank Man” on Tiananmen Square in 1989 both portray heroism; however, in totally different ways.

These storytelling elements are merely a few examples. The list of elements is endless. Keeping the storytelling element in mind certainly helps selecting the more interesting photographs from your contact sheet. If keeping storytelling in mind, a street photography project can become the more interesting for both the photographer and the reader.

I believe that in the end, all photography is storytelling. Some stories are boring and some are exciting and engaging. A good storyteller tells the exciting and engaging ones.


About the author: Andrej Zwitter is an amateur photographer based in the Netherlands. He shoots a diverse range of styles, but believes that street photography in particular lays bare the soul of the photographer. To see more of his work on his blog. This article also appeared here.

Storytelling in Street Photography

Many street photography tutorials discuss the same topics over and over—focussing techniques, composition, candid shooting, etc. However, I believe that one topic is underrepresented: storytelling.

Many composition principles in street photography are the same as in other kinds of photography. In addition, there needs to be some additional element of interest in the scene as well—an attention grabber. I mentioned in a previous post that, for example, Joel Meyerowitz’s key idea is relations.

In “Life of a Child“, I tried to express this element of relation. In belief, storytelling in street photography is another element of interest often overlooked.

Storytelling in Street Photography

Stories are sometimes subtile and covered by more prominent features, such as light or composition. Sometimes, however, stories are told very strongly, as with the famous picture V-J Day in Times Square by Alfred Eisenstaedt.

This picture is an excellent example of storytelling in street photography, as it is not very emphasized in many composition principles; yet still it has become one of the most iconic street photographs of all times. This can mostly be attributed to the story behind and around the picture that unfolds in the mind of the viewer. I would argue that some of the most famous street photographs have become famous because they tell a strong story and not because of their composition.

Not all stories require much action. In fact, the lack of action in a shot can sometimes open up the storytelling space for the viewer. “Old Man and the Sea 2” tries to achieve exactly this. By omitting the action, the photograph provides more possibilities for interpretation—it is opening up for storylines to unfold.

Photojournalism and Storytelling

Is street photography a form of photojournalism of the everyday life? Can one compose an image by directing the subject? I think there are no right and wrong answers. They will strongly depend on whether one wants to represent undiluted and honest every day life. In fact, as we know from photojournalism, already the framing (what to include, what to leave out), the perspective (from below, from above) the film type etc. represent a selection of the truth—one that the photographer sees and/or want to convey.

The viewer will, in addition, make her own selection and add her own phantasies. The final story imagined is probably a different one than the one shot. I guess, one has to go with what feels right. Most of the time I shoot candidly. But when opportunity arises, and the idea for a story emerges, I might get in touch with the subject and direct her or him. I discuss this in more detail here.

The final image then should on the one hand tell a story, while at the same time leave some space for imagination.

Storytelling Elements

The photographer can play with different storytelling elements. Below, I discuss a few alongside some examples from my portfolio. The list of storytelling elements can by no means be exhaustive but only illustrative, to give photographers some ideas for their own projects.

Key story line – All pictures that contain people contain also story lines. Some are quite clear, others are sidelines. The key story line is of course the prevalent one. The protagonist(s) in a photograph around which other storylines converge.

In the picture above, the two lovers are clearly the protagonists. The others play only a secondary role.

Process or Outcome – One can show a process or one can show the outcome. There are different reasons to pick either of them.

If the process in itself is very interesting (tying shoes isn’t), and one wants the audience not to miss the details in the production process, the former is a good choice. If one picks the outcome, then the process is subsumed. This one the one hand gives the viewer the opportunity to see the product, to tell him or herself the story of what the process might have been. It, however, also opens up the image for more story lines that one is distracted from when the process is in focus.

For example, would I have picked any of the photographs in which the woman in “the comfy shoes” is in the process of tying her shoes, the prominent story would be “ah, she is tying her comfy shoes, her feet must hurt from the high heels”. Picking the ended process, the present image allows other less prominent story lines to come forward: “ah, shoes (check); where is she looking, probably she is watching other people, or is she thinking, she does look very serious; why is she going home alone, oh, she is looking serious, might have to do with that, etc.”

The story that unfolds in the viewer’s head when action is not too dominant can sometimes make a picture with finished processes even more interesting.

Protagonist, antagonist, relationship – Some photographs come to life from the relationship they portray. This could be an antagonistic relationship, a friendship, or simply a correspondence.

Relationships require at least two subjects. But more than two subjects are also possible, of course. The facial expressions can also add to the storyline. For example, in “See Saw” below, the girl in the air is clearly excited and surprised. The lower girl’s expression shows determination.

In order to enhance the tension between the depicted relation, one can look for contrasts and connects in the picture and also in the subjects that one pics.

The two subjects in “Absence” create a tension through many elements: their backs are facing; one is white, one black, and they are dressed in opposite colours. At the same time they are connected through sitting on the same bench and both being immersed in their literature.

Emotions – Happiness, sadness, boredom, anger, frustration, all these emotions make very interesting subjects of a street photograph and add to the storyline. They can be seen as shortcuts of storytelling as emotions immediately unfold in a story. Furthermore, emotions empathically engage the viewer (much more than nondescript expressions of random shots of pedestrians).

Archetypes, virtues and vices represent some of the most prominent storytelling elements. The last picture illustrates motherhood, for example. In addition, we have the girl’s courage and curiosity. Particularly journalism photography centres around archetypes, virtues, and vices, as they are universally recognisable and have a strong effect on the viewer.

For example, Joe Rosenthal’s 1945 “Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima” or “Tank Man” on Tiananmen Square in 1989 both portray heroism; however, in totally different ways.

These storytelling elements are merely a few examples. The list of elements is endless. Keeping the storytelling element in mind certainly helps selecting the more interesting photographs from your contact sheet. If keeping storytelling in mind, a street photography project can become the more interesting for both the photographer and the reader.

I believe that in the end, all photography is storytelling. Some stories are boring and some are exciting and engaging. A good storyteller tells the exciting and engaging ones.


About the author: Andrej Zwitter is an amateur photographer based in the Netherlands. He shoots a diverse range of styles, but believes that street photography in particular lays bare the soul of the photographer. To see more of his work on his blog. This article also appeared here.

Street Photography in India Through a Wedding Photographer’s Lens

I miss India. The explosions of bold colour alongside subtle, pastel textures and hues. The juxtaposition lurking on every corner. The people—friendly, welcoming and warm. The insane city streets and the almost forgotten village walkways.

My good friend Sachin (founder of ARC and fellow 8Street photographer) and I spent two weeks exploring Rishikesh, Jaipur, Haridwar and Pushkar. We stayed off the worn tourist paths and delved into the genuine, lively and oftentimes frantic streets of true India. The people I met were incredible. I tended to invoke a chain of expressions from the locals—surprise, confusion and then a face splitting smile. In the bigger towns and that was followed by a selfie request. ‘Random tall grinning man in Om vest’ must have been trending on Facebook India.

I’m an unabashed quote lover. A favourite being “There is no gene for the human spirit”, the tagline for the much underrated film Gattaca. I saw this in abundance in India. Even with so little, people were doing so much. Thriving communities, families and friendships. For those who love to travel and meet people, make sure you visit India!

My Gear

Everything you see here, with the exception of 3 images, was taken with the Nikon D750 and Nikon 35mm f/1.8 lens. The Fuji XT2 was being tested as a second street camera (very inconspicuous cameras can be very handy). Impressive, I must say. The D750 remains my top choice for street photography though (along with weddings, of course).

What you see here is a small selection, there are another 60 or so images that could have been featured. I’ll be putting these all into a high quality photographic book this summer, stay up to date via my Facebook page for details.


About the author: Ross Harvey is an international award winning destination wedding photographer (covering the UK, Europe and the world). You can find more of his work in his street portfolio, in his wedding portfolio, and on Facebook. This article was also published here.

40 of the Best Street Photos of 2016 by Photographers Around the World

2016 was a very interesting year for street photography. It seems that more and more color work is getting popular. Especially in scenes with high contrast light, color images seem to be on equal footing with their colorless counterparts.

I’ve put together a collection of 40 of my favorite street photographs of 2016. The list covers amazing amateur photographers from all over the world who graciously granted me permission to display their pictures.

Through these photos, the photographers represent their beautiful hometowns or sharing their impressions while traveling.

It’s always inspiring for me to see a versatile album of fantastic photographs, I hope you’re inspired by viewing this collection as well.

Chu Viet Ha
Chris Tuarissa
Chris Retro
Boris De Flash
Boogie
Bernd Shaefers
Barry Talis
Ania Klosek
Alpha Andi
Adriana Zebrauskas
Adam Wong
Damon Jah
Martin Waltz
Markus Andersen
Lesya Kim
Kanrapee Chokpaiboon
Jeff Vaillancourt
Jack Simon
Ilya Shtutsa
Ilan Ben Yehuda
Gabi Ben Abraham
Faisal Bin Rahman Shuvo
Eric Mencher
Eric Kim
Dotan Saguy
Don Springer
Md. Enamul Kabir
Viduthalai Mani Dharmaraj
Tyler Simpson
Tobia Faverio
Tatsuo Suzuki
Stuart Paton
Skyid Wang
Salvatore Matarazzo
Ryosuke Takeoka
Rudy Boyer
Oliver Krumes
Muhammad Imam Hasan
Michele Liberti
Thomas Leuthard

About the author: Sebastian Jacobitz is a 27-year-old hobbyist street photographer from Berlin, capturing the everyday life in the city. The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. To see more of his work, visit his website or give him a follow on Facebook and Instagram. This post was also published here.

50mm vs 35mm vs 28mm: Finding the Best Lens for Street Photography

The 50mm lens has been the ‘standard’ for street photographers for ages, but is it the best option available? Maybe not. Kai wanted to find out, so he pit the 50mm against a 35mm and 28mm, and went out shooting to find out which he liked best and why.

If you want to romp around Hong Kong with Kai and his buddies while they shoot a variety of different subjects, definitely click play above. If you’re looking for conclusions, read on.

beststreetlens_feat

The final verdict—if there even is such a thing when you’re comparing something so subjective—has everything to do with what you’re trying to achieve. Each focal length offers something slightly different: the 50mm is a subject-centric lens, the 35mm puts you subjects into context by revealing their environment, and the 28mm forces you to either get really close to your subject or really environmental about your shots.

Put another way: the most usable lens will be the 35mm, the cheapest and “cleanest” will probably be the 50mm, and the most out there—the one that will give you the most unique shots while being just on the “edge of usable,” as Kai put it—is the 28mm. Check out the video up top to see all three lenses in action and decide which “look” you prefer.