Friday, 17 April 2015

Le Street Photography

So continuing yesterday's theme on candid photography in Cannes here's a few more for your amusement.

Somewhere along the Rue d'Antibes, Cannes
Not quite sure the gentleman here would be too happy with this particular capture of him.  On the other hand, he just might be!

Vampires live in Cannes
Got a nice reflection of the street in the shop window here (purely intentional, naturellement) but as you can see the gentleman has no reflection!  Proof if ever proof was needed that vampires do walk among us - well, in Cannes anyway.

Shoppers in Cannes, 2015

Avec le pooch
Of course the French still loves their dogs, particularly the smaller ones.  We saw loads in Antibes and this one in Cannes.  Clearly it has spotted something interesting across the street - probably another canine and from the position of its tail it looks like it's ready to make war, as usual.

So a couple of observations on the old street photography thing.  I'm currently a one-lens man, which happens to have a focal length of 35mm.  This would be considered a wide angle ('normal' field of view translating more or less to a focal length of 50mm for a 35mm camera, if that's not too confusing!).  A focal length of 35mm is a little on the wide side for street photography, methinks.  If I was going to take up this genre in any serious way I'd probably want a 50mm.  I never really thought that street photography was my cup of tea, though I must admit I did thoroughly enjoy that afternoon in Cannes and am mildly pleased with the results.  It remains to be seen how people back in the North East Liberties would react when they have a wee camera pointed at them - I'm inclined to try it and see how it goes.  Hopefully I'll live to tell the tale. 

The issue of privacy in street photography rears its head from time to time and different countries have different takes on it.  In most countries the general rule is that if you are in a public space then you are fair game for a photographer, provided the photographer is not defaming you in any way.  In fact, it is generally OK to take photographs of people who are on private land, provided you yourself are standing in a public space and haven't gone out of your way to take the snap (e.g., climbed a tree). France, I have just found out, has quite strict privacy laws which together with some conflicting court judgments have questioned the legality of street photography in that country.  Ooops!  Hopefully Interpol won't be alerted to my minor transgressions.  Maybe I should stick to taking photographs of cows and trees...

If you have an spare moment or two you might care to click here for an article by the NY Times on the subject of privacy with regard to street photography in France.  It actually makes for very interesting reading - as do the comments.

1 comment:

  1. Great shots again Michael, but I'm not buying your suggestion of using a 50mm instead of a 35 just like that. OK, it's a bit choosing between two great performers, but the good thing with the 35, and what I really like in your photos, is that you get a lot more than just closeup of peoples faces. I like to see the streets with their buildings and all, and the 35 certainly gives you that more "open" feeling.
    But again, these shots could perfectly well also be done in a very pleasent way with a 50mm lens... It's all about taste me thinks, and preferences. We all look at things a bit different probably :)