1. Try to anticipate the moment. You control only two things: where to shoot and when to shoot.
In street photography almost everything is out of your control. Things are suddenly and continuously happening around you in the street, none of them are under your will. The only thing you can control is your camera. For this reason it is important for you to know how to use your camera, how to change the settings fast to be ready to capture in a photograph anything interesting happening in front of your lens.
While you are outside making street photography everything happening is quite unexpected. When you look at the work of great photographers like Henri Cartier-Bresson t looks like they were always in the right places at the right moment. Train yourself to understand, predict and anticipate what is going on around you. For this reason, as everything going on around you is unexpected, you have to be totally aware of what’s happening and tuned on.
In fact people constantly repeat their behavior: smile, make eye contact, repeat gesture of love, all into doors, cross the streets. If you understand this and try to be aware of everything happening in the street you will soon be able to anticipate the moment.
2. Be positive when you go out in the street.
As I just said doing street photography you control nothing except your camera. For this reason street photography can be quite overwhelming. A positive mental attitude is really important to succeed in street photography. If you go outside thinking you are going to make good photograph you will more probably find something interesting that catch your attention.
On the contrary if you start thinking that to make good photos it is too difficult, that you are not able to find something interesting or that you are unlucky… Probably you will be unlucky!
Making street photography you are into a creative process. You have to engage the moment with your head and with your feelings and emotions as well. You have to think about what is in front of your eyes in order to understand if you can make a picture with a photographic potential or not.
Be positive also about yourself, body language and communication are really important while you are making street photography. Be gentle and respectful of others, you are not a threat for anyone as you are only interested in making good street photographs.
3. Shot in all weather condition.
It is really beautiful enjoy good weather going outside shooting street photography when it is sunny. But in this way you always obtain the same result, you always get the same kind of images with strong light and deep shadow. Force yourself to go out to make photographs when it is rainy, when is snowing and freezing cold.
Even better: try to always bring with you the camera, no matter the weather condition, with good weather, with rain, snow or even windy day. You never know what may came in front of your camera. For sure the light will be really different with different weather conditions.
During the days of bad weather is quite challenging to go outside to make photographs, but you won’t regret the idea looking at the result. The people act and dress completely different, the light and the contrast as well are different from sunny day.
4. First shoot then think. Be aware.
Whenever you feel something and think there is something interesting go for the photograph. Press the shutter without overthinking. When you are in the street things just happen and if you don’t push yourself to make the photograph you might just miss the photograph.
It is completely normal to have moment of hesitation when you are not sure about exposition, camera settings, or how you are going to frame the image. When you see something engaging while walking in the street, just make the photograph without hesitancy or you may regret not even trying to capture the image.
Creating a worthwhile street photograph is about starting to see, about awareness. It involves making connection with what is going on around you in the city.
Quality has to do with intention.Elliott Erwitt
5. Find a good Story.
A photograph contains plenty of information, for this reason is a great medium to tell stories not in a conventional narrative way but trough visual storytelling. If you want read informations about the grammar of photography you can click here.
You can’t be an author unless you have something to say.David Alan Harvey
A good photographer has is own voice and should have something to say. The way you tell your story is really important and is what makes your voice, that show how you perceive the world.
As you are aware and ready to connect with the world you can anticipate the events before they happens. With practice you will start to see stories developing in front of your eyes and begin to predict the way this stories are going to evolve.
As a photographer your natural habitat is the street. With the practice when you think that something is going to happen you will see it actually happening. And this is amazing and it will give you great confidence in your skill as street photographer.
Photography is an adaptable medium that can express your feeling and emotions about the subject of the photograph.