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Be yourself: having a personal style in street photography

March 23, 2024

Having a personal photographic style is essential to reflect “who we are” in pictures. It’s crucial that our style truly represents our soul, without pretending to be someone else. I give you few examples to explain better what I want to say. If you’re naturally shy or introverted in real life, that same approach should carry over when you’re out doing street photography. At the same time it’s clear that a bit of courage is necessary when we are out on the streets; simply you can’t take pictures of strangers 500 meters away pretending to take nice and involving pictures. However if you’re introverted and shy in everyday life as in the streets, this way of being must somehow be perceived also in your street photography. On the other hand, if you’re extroverted, assertive, and expressive, it’s perfectly fine to have a completely different style: a more intimate approach with closer contact and perhaps a more explicit way of photographing for example (think about Bruce Gilden and his way to take pictures of strangers using frontal flash). But the key is not to force ourselves into a different mold. Being true to ourselves is essential. Our style must reflect ourselves. When someone looks at our street shots, they are, in a way, cruising our artistic sensibility and soul.

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In other words, I admire photographers like Bruce Gilden and Mark Cohen, but I can never be exactly like them. If I try, I’ll merely be a faint imitation, not truly expressing my own identity and way of being. I’ll be mimicking a style I appreciate, but it won’t authentically belong to me, it will never truly be mine. You have to understand this if you want to show who you are. Of course you can change the way of photographing, the technique, even the style but this must be an intimate and natural process dictated by yourself and not by someone who sells you a workshop telling you that it will make you go away from the fear of photographing on the street. If you have fear you can try to fight against it, but you’ll never be like Bruce Gilden. Just be yourself and evolve in your street photography, art and life. As I said in a previous post Instagram doesn’t help you in finding your style! Be careful, think with your brain and feel with your heart!

 

That’s all folks

 

 Stay well, have always light in your life

Best, F.S

 

Read moree about photography, art and cinema:

A magic moment in the streets

A little girls plays: smartphone 

How I made the series the prayer man

Light can tell a story: street photography, painting and cinema

Social classes and racism: street photography and cinema

Underground: street photography, street art and cinema

The midnight meat train: cinema and street photography

 

 

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