Big cities are perfect for street photography. And when I lived in London, a friend would remind me how lucky I was. My problem is that I don’t like confrontation (or even the risk of being confronted).
So what are the options? Do the introverts of this world give up, go home and take up still life photography? Definitely not. In his excellent book ‘The Street Photographer’s Manual’, David Gibson insists that street photography is a ‘broad church’. It’s not just about taking unposed images of people in the street. Chapter by chapter, he takes readers through different approaches to street photography, featuring strong, contemporary images.
I was heartened to learn that my own ‘Window Shopping’ series, with its absence of people, falls within Gibson’s definition of street photography. But really I shouldn’t need that kind of reassurance – and nor should you. Pictures should stand or fall on their own merits, whether they fall into standard categories or not.
The moral of this tale? As you develop your own style – your own voice – don’t get pigeonholed. The true test of a good photograph is how alive it is, how clearly it communicates its message. Have confidence in your own convictions and let me know how you get on.