Learn about Street Photography or Street Photography

learn about street photography or street photography 61b0f4bf6a16e

Street Photography or Street Photography is a very fascinating type of photography in which you could start as Photographer since it is considered a very complete area, however it has its degree of difficulty so if you master Street Photography it may be easier to polish the other photographic disciplines.

To get into this type of photography you first have to know what it is about, that is why In this article we will talk a little about its origin, the rules so that your photography is considered street photography but also the most important points so that you can successfully wear this style and get unique photographs.

What is street photography?

Street Photography or Street Photography is a way of capturing reality in a sincere way, this type of photography frames the urban environment and its relationship with the people. The photographers who take this type of photography are also called street photographers, they tend to concentrate on capturing the everyday life of strangers and try everything to be able to go unnoticed when photographing.

Street photography is done in public spaces and for this type of photography it is understood that it has to be spontaneous, that is, it should not be a shooting prepared without any intervention, in order to tell a story through natural scenes.For street photography it is not necessary for a person to appear in the shot, it may be enough with some indication of human footprint , that is, to show that at some point someone was there.

Street photography is about spontaneity , however it is not about taking random photos, being a “street photographer” is about developing an ability to keep in tune with life , notice in a person the moods, colors, intensity, a story and frame all these elements in a photograph. Photographers who delve into this style find very interesting to tell stories through the help of people from the urban environment to compose. It is also called as candid photography because it has the same essence, that is, a candid photograph has the same spontaneity and naturalness without creating any appearance, it should not be planned or intervened, so the people photographed are totally unknown.

Fotografía Callejera

Beginnings of street photography

A great reference for street photography is Eugéne Atget, considered to be the author of this photographic style who greatly popularized his work in street photography in In 1890, he used to base his photographic shots on the architecture of the city, photographing stairs, gardens, buildings and sometimes involving workers in his shots, however, for him, people were not the most important thing.

John Thomson, more involved in society capturing his daily life in the streets, is considered a fundamental and very important part of the transition to pictorial and portrait photography, being pioneer in photographic documentation of people, landscapes and cultural elements.

Rue Mouffetard, Paris-Henri Cartier

Henri Cartier-Bresson during the twentieth century based his style on capturing people’s lives and was responsible for promoting and transmitting the concept of «the instant decisive » this idea motivated thousands of photographers to take this type of spontaneous photographs in various public places.Henri Cartier during his career had the opportunity to take portrait photographs of great personalities such as Picasso, Ernesto «Che» Guevara, Fidel Castro, also managing to cover important events such as the death of Mahatma Gandhi.

Street photography is linked and compared with jazz since they are considered as direct representative spontaneities of life, this connection attributed to them is represented in the work « New York School of Photography “which was really a group made up of twentieth century photographers, where one of the most influential photographers Robert Frank in his book called” The Americans “broke with the photographic style already which was based on the counterculture presenting raw RAW and unfocused photographs, which questioned the photographic style of the time.

Fotografía Callejera- The Americans
The Americans – Robert Frank

Street photography In color or black and white?

Not all photographs work in black and white and some may work better in color, sometimes a photograph is kept only by color, and putting it in black and white can take or lose strength, although it depends more on the photography and what you want to convey, so it is very important to be clear about this when taking the photo.


Black and white photography is the standard in street photography since the beginning of this style, this is because black and white can help give it some depth and hardness and transmit certain feelings such as melancholy, sadness, purity, tranquility, and it is timeless.

Black and White

On the other hand, color in street photography can also help to contribute certain aspects such as warmth or help convey joy, happiness, this depends on each color, the color can also help to build a compositional and attractive image since not all photographs work in grayscale.

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Confusions and Clarifications

With the passing of time, new photographic styles have emerged, which is why it is important to distinguish every detail of these styles to know correctly the type of photography we are taking, remember that street photography must be candid photography, that is, spontaneous and natural without creating any appearance, it must not be planned or intervened by what photographed people are totally unknown.

Street photography versus documentary photography

Street photography or street photography is often confused with documentary photography, however documentary photography requires prior research to be able to register and send an understandable message with a social purpose to document.

Street photography versus urban photography

To differentiate street photography from urban photography, one must know that urban photography are photographs intervened and prepared, based on technique, aesthetics and photographic composition leaving aside the history and the natural and the spontaneity of the shot.

Street Photography versus Photo Journalism

Photographic journalism seeks to communicate events, news and events through photographs in order to disseminate and inform about these events of common interest.

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Henri Cartier- Bresson

Aspects to Consider

These are some important points that you can consider when taking street photography that will help you to be prepared and be able to take quality photographs and thus be able to get started in this style but for this it takes time, patience and a lot of practice, since many of the photographers consider it a tough genre, which requires many skills.

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This photographic style captures moments in places such as transport, a market, a work, a subway station, restaurants, parks, streets, alleys, buildings, avenues or some urban environment in relation to human nature.


For street photography there is no specific camera or lens, you can take your street photographs with the photographic equipment you have, even with the camera of your mobile device since it is very difficult to always walk through the streets with your professional camera, here the important thing is to frame the exact moment.

Speed ​​

In speed, this photographic style requires a lot of speed, since we remember that street photography is spontaneous, so it becomes a bit difficult to pay attention and get a good shot. A lot of practice and coordination. Going unnoticed and not giving ourselves to notice that we are photographing is very important because we do not have to intervene in the shot to make it natural.


Having the camera always ready and ready is essential so that the exact moment does not miss, carrying your camera or device in your hand can be a great help , configured with some aspects so that you can capture more accurately.


You have to be very observant and pay close attention to everyone and everything that is happening around you so that it is possible to capture those unique moments that only pass for a moment, you can practice your observation even if you do not carry your camera when you go down the street, pay attention and try to enter the world of what the people around you are going through.

Interesting Points

Look for interesting places and people, a good place will help you tell a unique story and take a unique photograph, just remember not to intervene and take your character out of context as it will only be a photographic shot of a portrait.


There are times when something very interesting cannot happen to photograph or you just have to wait a little for it to happen, you may have to take a photograph street is a bit desperate because you cannot control any aspect of it, such as the light, people or any other event that happens, that is why you have to have great patience if you cannot get a good shot.


If you are thinking of going out only to take street photographs, make sure you wear the appropriate clothing depending on the place you attend as it can be very hot and an excess of jackets can hinder you when photographing, and in the opposite case if you do not have something to wear warm, the cold may not let you work and you have to cancel your photographic taking.

Street Photography to Inspire you

Aspectos Legal

Photographing people without their consent in public places for artistic purposes is legal in most countries, protecting freedom of expression and journalistic freedom, however there are restrictions Regarding the use of these, there are specific laws that protect people’s privacy.

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Learn about Street Photography or Street Photography
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