Taking photos are strangers in public can be a bit scary and intimidating – especially if you are kinda shy.
In this video, I show you I take pictures of strangers
Dealing with the fear of approaching strangers
The first step is to understand that 99,9% of the time, you will either get a “Yes, sure” or a “No”.
And when you approach people in public who don’t want their photo taken, just smile and say “Alright. Have a nice day”
This year, I’ve done more than 500 street portraits and if I were to take a guess, I’d say 90% of the people I ask are cool with it.
If you are really shy, then start slow..
You w be right in the face of the stranger you are taking a picture of. One of the greatest street photographers, Henri-Cartier Bresson has a very introvert personally and he is notoriously known for keeping a big distance between the person he is photographing and himself.
What about the 0,1% who gets upset?
Depending on how aggressive you are in your approach, you will at some point, especially if you don’t ask before you take the photo, get an aggressive reaction. Most of the time this will be verbal, by someone telling you “What are you doing” or “Don’t take my photo”.
Of course, it sucks, and it’s what all street photographers fear, but it is so rare this happens that you shouldn’t even think about it.
As long as you come in smiling and positive, most people you meet in the street will play along.
Getting confident, positive and ready
Take a shower.
Listen to your favorite tunes.
Tips to take photos of strangers (with permission)
Doing street portraits of strangers in public can be a really fun experience, once you get over the fear of approaching and asking people for their photos.
Tips to take photos of strangers (without permission)
When you do portraits of strangers without permission it’s referred to as candid portraits or candid street portraits.
This kinda of street photography is a bit controversial depending on how you go about it.