A street photographer set free, is an individual, that has loaded himself above all with the following task: start noticing things. There are no two pairs of eyes in the universe equal to each other. This is why street photography will always have a future.
Recently, I have dusted off one of the old tricks of street shooters: taking the photographs without looking through the viewfinder. Some call it shooting from the hip, but in practice, I have worked out two or three alternative modes of doing it, and sometimes the results are surprisingly good.
I like particularly the unstable verticals, and spontaneous expressions, that load these photographs with vitality. My preferred tool is a small rangefinder camera with auto exposure function. (Bessa R4A) I normally equip it with a 25mm lens, set the aperture to f 8.0 or 5.6, and the focus to 2m.
The visual combinations of humans ( and not only) interacting in the streets, have been explored in many different fashions: the mastery of form and tipping moments of Henri Cartier Bresson, the human interplay of Gary Winogrand, the surreal observations of Robert Frank, or the witty “off guard” photographs of Elliot Erwitt.
One of the first masters of the street snapshot, has been Lisette Model. I tend to think about her often, because It happens that I walk frequently the same streets, where she started her art a century ago, in Nice, Cote d’Azur.