Teresa Pilcher Photography

Get Closer

Get Close, then get Closer.. When Shooting with Intent at Street, I want to exhaust every possibility. There is often an interesting subject that I wish to capture. Then my internal dialogue starts ‘What happens if they confront me?’ What will I say? Shooting strangers has its challenges.. Do I have the courage to walk right up to them and take their photo.  There is a driving force that overcomes the doubt. If I am still debating this, then I really want this image, so I take my shot and then I walk closer and shoot more frames until I have what I am after. This is not always the case. Some people will see you and move on, but some will continue what they are doing. They don’t believe they could possibly be of interest to you. To be honest, I have seen people taking my photo at Street and it doesn’t really bother me. I am no different to most. I can’t imagine that the image they capture could be of any consequence and that they are most likely shooting the building or the street behind me.

This image was taken in Paris of a girl enjoying the afternoon sunlight, I took about a dozen images until I got the right point of view. She turned her head slightly as I believe she was aware that I was photographing her. I was in the zone so was not worried about her challenging me.

This image taken near the Spanish Steps in Rome, this was more of a hit and run. I took one image from a distance then walked right up to these girls. She was absorbed in what she was doing but became aware that I had taken this image, I just kept walking. It was totally worth it.

This image was taken in Rome in the Villa Borghese Gardens.  The style of these girls caught my attention, I took a couple of images then walked closer until I had filled my frame. I am aware of body language here, they were aware of my presence but still did not challenge me. So my bravery paid off and I got my shot.

That is the main reason why I often shoot from the hip and don’t make eye contact with my subjects. A good strategy is to look at my camera with a puzzled expression, as if I am trying to decipher the settings.. Or I then shoot up at the scenery.

Next time you’re at street take a chance and see if you can get up close to your subject. T

Any thoughts?


Teresa Pilcher

Teresa Pilcher Photography A Blog on Street Photography

1 comment

Leave a Comment

  • This is an important key point for me. It depends on the culture identity of the people. Very often i am not able to get closer enough to take the challenge. The impact of media scandals turn this kind of shooting legally wrong and causing general public outrage. For me the “dialogue” between body language and the awareness of my shooting intention gives me the answer of do it or not do it., then i’ll be able to get closer, through zoom or physically. Very useful for me stopping at this subject.