Do’s & Don’ts while shooting Street Photography

Street photography can be fun, but it can also be tricky. Is it as simple as going out into the streets and taking photos? In the narrowest of views, yes. Street photography is regarded by many as an art form; it can be quite intimidating and challenging. I would venture to say that anyone who has achieved some measure of success at street photography has found it immensely rewarding.  And as a visual medium, street photography can be profoundly inspirational. 

So if you’re considering hitting the streets, here are a few basic DOs and DON’Ts to help get you started.


Look for things, people, and places that interest you.

Look wide, life is happening all around you. Look around at  people, culture, humanity, animals, food, market, city, travel – anything which you find interesting. 

Try to find people who are busy with their work, wait for a while and try to understand the situation, story, emotions and expressions of it and that’s the perfect time when you can shoot perfect street photographs.     

Shoot wide

Why shoot in wide? When you shoot wide, you involve many stories, emotions, expressions, people, color, and drama in one frame which helps you to capture the exact moment of the subject. And widely shot photographs makes viewers feel connected to the scene.  

A wide angle lens will also allow you to get reasonably close to your subject without having to point the camera directly at them, wide lenses like 35mm and 50mm. These lenses are very small in size, which makes them very easy to carry. Hence, for  street photographers these lenses are very helpful.

Know the rules and laws of street photography

Street photography seems to be a easiest photography from the other photography skills, yes it is easy but at the same time you have to be careful of the rules and laws of street photography. 

You will inevitably encounter individuals who feel you don’t have the “right” to take their photograph; it’s all about the privacy of the people. If you get caught while clicking pictures of the people, they may take actions against you. One of the main disagreements surrounding in street photography is that of privacy.


Avoid flash, use natural light

In photography, using  a flash is great idea, but not in every area of photography. Strictly not in street photography. Street is all about taking the photographs of strangers and non-predictable things, where we don’t take permission while taking pictures. If you use flash while doing street, you may put yourself in a problem. Some people may get angry that you are taking photographs of them without their permission. 

Street photography is all about capturing the natural and exact situation, by using flash you may make people aware they are being photographed.                               

Don’t rush yourself

Patience is one of the most important virtues that street photographers can highly benefit from. At any moment, you might come across the most unique background, you should be able to be patient enough to allow the right person to enter the place for you to capture its image. 

You should consider shooting in good light; this ends up making your photographs look magical. The photographers will always take their time and wait for the right person to occupy a beautiful scene before they can capture it.

Don’t shoot without having the reason

People shoot photographs in the streets for plenty of reasons including just for pleasure, Documenting humanity, is one of the plenty reasons. You should have a concrete goal and mission in your mind of why you are capturing these photographs.

  • Text and Images – Sujay Shathananda

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