This is a part of my “Learn Street Photography Series“.
Make sure to also read my 99 street photography tips.
Alright, camera settings! We have Manual mode, shutter-priority, P-mode, aperture priority mode: When to use what setting in street photography?
My preferred settings for street photography is P-mode – I use that 70% of the time simply because I can’t bother thinking too much about my camera settings when the ‘decisive moment’ is in front of me.
If I’m doing street photography at day-time, I usually try to use a minimum shutter speed of 125 of a second or 250/s to freeze the subject
See how I do street photography (filmed with a GoPro)
This photo is impossible to take in P-mode
When I took this photo, the camera setting I used was shutter priority mode. The shutter speed is set to 1 second and everything else is in auto mode.
Fujifilm x100f: Long-exposure: ISO 250 Shutter-speed / exposure time of 1 second, Aperture / F-stop : ƒ/16.0 – Focal Length: 23.0 mm
When I shoot with the Fujifilm x100f – my preferred camera for street photography, I use three different settings for street photography.
The Fujifilm x100F comes with three customizable modes. And when you pick your street camera, it’s crucial it has the option to set a minimum shutter speed.
- Setting 1) The mode I use the most for day-time: 1/250 shutter speed and ISO max of 1600. This setting will tell the camera to never go above 1600 ISO and never go below 1/250 of a second. This helps me avoiding blurry motion by freezing moving targets and keeping the ISO at a decent level.
Update: 2018 – I just got my hands on my new favorite camera for street photography. It’s the brand new Fujifilm X-T3 and it’s amazing.
Street Photography at night
When I’m doing street photography at night, I always go to a max ISO of 12800.
P Mode vs. Aperture mode for street photography
In the past, I would usually just shoot in P-mode – always. Lately, I’ve been experiment a lot more with aperture priority mode to control and master the depth of field (DoF) better.
Focusing: Autofocus, prefocus, AE-L & AF-L
How to focus: This is a tricky thing in street photography because everything moves so fast and your scene is very unpredictable, which is why you should rely a lot on your settings and experience.
AE lock stands for Auto Exposure-Lock. The reason to use AE-L is to lock the exposure where you want and point that camera elsewhere after.
AF lock stands for Auto Focus Lock. The point of using AF-lock, which is something I often use, is to pre-focus at a certain spot, so your next shot will be a lot faster.