Street Photography

Next term I shall be leading a session on street photography at the U3AC Photo Forum.  What is street photography?  Westerbeck and Meyerowitz write about: ‘…pictures of people who are going about their business unaware of the photographer’s presence.  They [street photographers] have made candid pictures of everyday life in the street.  That, at its core, is what street photography is about.’ (Bystander: A History of Street Photography, 1994)  For Howarth and McLaren it is: ‘…the impulse to take candid pictures in the stream of everyday life…in a single frame it can distil a remarkable amount of truth, showing the everyday with such wit or honesty that it will time and again amaze, delight or move us.’ (Street Photography Now, 2010)

Which of the two pictures here is an example of street photography that I might use in the session?  Both show a street (or road), are candid and show moments of everyday life with people going about their business.  Both capture relationships:  first between people cocooned in their cars and the exposed cyclist; and second between the individuals and the couples.  The latter is closer to the spirit of street photography, the people dominate; the former is more a piece of urban landscape, the buildings dominate.

Photos: 1. London Wall, London, January 2011; 2. Bury St Edmunds, September 2011

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