Archive for the ‘Wide-angle lens’ Tag

Rules and Myths of Candid Photography: Wide angle or telephoto lenses   4 comments

Many bloggers and experts like to say that you should use wide angle lenses because they require being close to the subject. This makes street shooting a “fair” game. It seems dishonest to use a telephoto by hiding from a distance.

Hunters have the same debate when choosing a weapon.  They will argue that it is valiant to select a tool that will give their victim a chance to escape.

However, we are photographers and our goal is to make great images. We are not in a contest with people on the street or with each other. The choice of lenses is governed by artistic considerations, feasibility, or convenience, not by some superficial notion of machismo.

Often I use lenses from wide to short telephoto, including small zoom. On occasion I have fun with my old long telephoto 60-300.

I don’t toggle lenses during shooting. My choice is based mostly on my current mood and situation. If I am in doubt I use a “normal” 31 mm (with 1.5x crop factor).

I don’t use a long telephoto because being far from the object (using small view angle) makes the depth of perspective compressed. But sometimes this compression is an important part of the composition.

Wide angle lenses allow the photographer to be very close to the person. Photographers can invade the personal space of the subject before getting a chance to use the camera’s viewfinder. This may require shooting from the hip or belly.  Do not frame tightly in order to have latitude for rotation and cropping.

Use any lenses that you think are most appropriate for your situation.  Don’t concern yourself with artificial rules that many candid street photography experts try to push.

Related topics

Pentax 14mm f/2.8 for Candid Street Photography

Pentax 70 mm f/2.4 DA Limited for Candid Street Photography

Rules and myths of candid photography: An Introduction   Leave a comment

Through reading street photography forums and blogs, you can find several discussions about how street photography should be done. I will list some of them:

  • Black & White or Color
  • Wide angle or telephoto lenses
  • Ask permission or invade privacy
  • Use post processing or in camera only imaging

Let me say this now before we will delve into further details:

Photography is art. You have to make candid images that are the best for you, and, hopefully, somebody will express interest in them. Everything else is irrelevant.

Before you read an expert’s advice on how candid photography should be done, first look at his pictures. If you like them, read more and practice, otherwise continue looking for your own way.

I will address each aspect of candid photography in my next posts. Stay tuned.

Now it is my time to preach.