Instant Inspiration (6) – Storefront Windows

Streetdog | Nuremberg | 2016

It’s finally weekend again and time for another episode of my “Instant Inspirations”. As we approach Christmas these December weekends are usually filled with power shopping. But why not take your camera along and try something creative while your significant other is inside a shop? Also, if you suffer from  “Photographer’s Block”  or simply want to shoot something that you have never tried or at least not recently, try using storefront windows as a free and ready available prop.  For a bit of how-to, a few more exemplary photos and links to episodes 1 through 5 of “Instant Inspirations” continue reading after the jump…..

When shopping in the city with my wife I always bring the camera for some quick shooting even though I really don’t have much dedicated photography time, because, you know,  the focus is on making the wife happy 😉 . Still, when in a store or waiting in front there is a free prop that can be used for great creative shooting…the store front window. They can be used in various ways. First, you can capture great reflections, as you can see from the introductory photo above, where I set the camera directly on the window glass to maximize reflections. Sure it helps if you find yourself a store window with interesting decorations inside and some complementary outside scenery, so you get a creative mix of real life outside scenery, its reflection in the window and underneath some real life inside scenery.

Covered Heads
Covered Heads | Nuremberg | 2016

Next option is to have an interestingly decorated shop window you like to use as background. Then it’s just a matter of taking a few steps back and waiting for an interesting subject to pass in front of your lease. Depending on what you want to achieve you can play with a longer exposure time to create a motion blur effect.

Man behind glass
Man behind glass | Nuremberg | 2016

Another variant is to look for a glass corner window  that you can use to shoot through, again creatively mixing outside scenery, inside objects and reflections.

I want to be real
I want to be real | Nuremberg | 2016

In case your significant other drags you into the store and you need to wait while she’s in the fitting room, you can do some inside out shooting, using props in the window (as dressing dummies) to create interest in your images.

What's in for me ?
What’s in for me ? | Nuremberg | 2016

Or you do just the opposite, look for a storefront window with great outside reflections and shoot into the inside, also a great option to come up with interesting photos.

Needless to say you can shoot this images both in color and black&white. Just be ready for some funny looks you draw when leaning against those windows and snapping away.

Whites and Blacks
Whites and Blacks | Nuremberg | 2016

But most important: Go out and have fun!

Have a great weekend!


Related Posts:

Instant Inspiration (5) – Puddle Shooting

Instant Inspiration (4) – Juxtaposition

Instant Inspiration (3) – Silhouettes

Instant Inspiration (2) – Motion Blur

Instant Inspiration (I) – Get Down Low

Street Photography Quick Tip (3)

Street Photography Quick Tip (2)

28 thoughts on “Instant Inspiration (6) – Storefront Windows

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  1. Hi, I love your work, and find your tips and learning centre really helpful.
    This post makes me chuckle, as all I can think whilst reading is:
    some countries have ‘man crèches’ in their shops, where women can safely (lol) leave their men; they have football/hobbies/fishing/camera/tech gadget magazines etc; and tv’s; you could a brilliant collection of photo’s on ‘crèched men and shopping women.
    You know we women go into into a ‘shopping zone’ in our heads whilst out.

  2. Excellent shots, Marcus. Window shooting is an interesting challenge and you have found terrific angles, reflections and compositions. Well done.

    1. Thanks so much, Jane, your feedback always means a lot to me. Hopefully you had a great weekend, I’m already sitting in a plane back to the US for another week of meetings in windowless rooms 😉 But I have the small Ricoh in my bag, maybe there is a small photo opportunity or two….wish you a great week!

  3. These are all great! I love Streetdog, and am really drawn to the last- Whites and Blacks. I have a tiny reluctance to hold up my camera in front of strangers. I guess I need to get over that in order to try this one. 🙂 Love it! Gives me something to shoot for. Blessings-

    1. Thanks, your comment means a lot 😊🙏! It takes practice to get over the hump to shoot strangers. But rarely I get an annoyed look or a bad comment. The best thing to get started is by simply asking if you can take their picture, saying that you like their looks, their smile, their eyes…whatever it us that draws your attention. 9 of 10 will be flattered and have no issue at all. And to the one person that refuses I smile and say “thank you” and move on. Amazingly it works 😀!! Try it !!

      1. Ok. I will try it for sure! Thank you! Love your ideas. Tomorrow is a chili tasting event at church… I’ll be brave and take my camera. 🙂

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