Five Facets of Photography – Ideas that Changed Photography: The Decisive Moment

The course I’m running for the Cambridge U3A, Five Facets of Photography, starts this week with ‘Ideas that Changed Photography’.  This post comes from that module.  Posts over the next five weeks will include material from subsequent modules.

Matt Stuart Oxford Circus, London. England. Great Britain. 2011.

Henri Cartier-Bresson is forever associated with the ‘decisive moment’, his lyrical term for the ability to immortalize a fleeting scene on film. It was a fast, mobile, detail-obsessed style that would help chart the course for all of modern photography. Now it drives much of the approach of contemporary street photography, as here where amid the street scene of people who ignore each other as they go about their business the flying rugby player meets the flying child.

Note: Harold Evans, the great newspaper editor said that pictorial organisation was not enough, the photograph has to be significant and newsworthy.

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