Street Portrait

10 Day Photography Challenge – Day 3

Intensity

Intensity | Portland | 2018

Frequent readers know that when I participate to photography challenges on WordPress, I try to enter street photography images to match the theme. Day 3 of of Cassia Denner’s 10 Day Photography Challenge calls for a photograph with “An Instrument”.

Good that I ran across this street musician in Portland to get my image for today. The total intensity of his performance was mind-blowing, and I tried to capture it in this shot I took with my Olympus PEN-F with the 14-150mm F/4-5.6 travel zoom. Image specs 1/80 sec @ f/5,6 and ISO 1600, focal length was 150mm (equals 300mm in full frame equivalent).

Check out the blogs of the other participants: Cassia (our host),  Susan,  Gracie, ArianaJenna,  Arabella

I’m back on the ground in Nuremberg, and look very much forward to a four week stint at home before returning to the Pacific Northwest.

Be sure to check out my free Learning Center, if you also look for tips and inspirations around photography.

Wish you all a great and relaxed weekend!

Marcus

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10 Day Photography Challenge – Day 1

You serious?

I’ve made it safely to Portland, and for this of you who read yesterday’s post, I got into my hotel by 10 pm, which made it a 27 hour travel and work day. But after a sound 6 hours sleep (which is good, considering the jet lag effects) I’m ready to tackle today’s challenges. Talking about challenges, today is Day 1 of Cassia’s 10 Day Photography Challenge.  Today’s topic is “A portrait”.

Well , that’s not overly difficult for a street photographer. Take the camera, walk up to the first interesting looking person and ask if I can make her portrait. This young lady is a visitor from Korea. Sure she was initially puzzled by the question from a total stranger, but then I got the (almost always) usual answer “yes, why not?”, and while starting to talk I snapped away. I don’t exactly remember at what point she gave me that surprised look, but it is the photo I liked the most, as I always try to capture some emotions in the faces, like a thoughtful stare into the distance, a funny face or, like here, an expression of surprise.

Check out the blogs of the other participants: Cassia (our host),  Susan, ArianaJennaGracie, Arabella

Tomorrow’s topic is “Something Red”. I already have something my mind 😉

Be sure to check out my free Learning Center, if you also look for tips and inspirations around photography.

Have a great Thursday!

Marcus

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Weekly Photo Challenge: 2017 Favorites

Fetish Designer

For all my free tips and inspirations around Street Photography visit my Learning Center

The last WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge (WPC) of 2017 was probably also the hardest one for this year . At least for me it was. With the title “2017 Favorites” it calls to post your most meaningful photo of 2017.

Now we all are passionate about our photography, and I’m quite sure, that when you look at your archives of this year, there are at least a dozen great images looking at you, screaming “I deserve to be in the 2017 Favorites!!!” And aren’t all those beautiful photographs, that each mean so much to you, your creative children? And don’t you want to treat all your children equal? So you are tempted to post not only your most favorite landscape photo, but also your best macro shot, portrait, street photo, monochrome image, and the one image you are most emotionally attached to and you just can’t leave out. After all, this is a great opportunity to show off a small selection of your best work. And Ben Huberman even left the door open for us to post several photos, if we can’t decide which is the absolute best (or meaningful) image of 2017.

When I joined a street photography workshop with Eric Kim back in November, one of the lessons I took away is that as photographer you need to be able to “kill your babies”. In order to distill out your best work. And to make you hungry again to take more photos, and make you better.

So even if it hurt, as I think I had great year where I really advanced my photography and got many pictures that I think are really good, I took the challenge by the word and post only my most meaningful photo of 2017.

This is my best image from the mentioned workshop. And it was the image that broke the spell around “interactive” street photography for me, where I discovered how much fun it actually is to walk up to interesting looking people in the streets and ask if I could make their portrait. So this is my photography of the year 2017!

Have a great Thursday!

Marcus

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My little Portland Christmas miracle

A Street Photographer’s Dialogue

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I conquered my fears

Look at me!

Mirrored

Mirrored | Portland | 2017

Can you find the photographer in this Portland street portrait? I was awfully close with my 25mm F/1.8 prime attached to my Olympus PEN-F. The image is not cropped. I took this photo with 1/80 sec and a wide aperture of F/2 to throw everything behind the face out of focus. ISO was 200.

Another super friendly person I met on the streets of Portland last weekend. I just asked him for his portrait. He said “sure – why not?” While I snapped a few shots we had a nice chat. Not all that difficult! Go out and try it!

Have a super Sunday!

Marcus

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For all my free tips and inspirations around photography visit my Learning Center

My little Portland Christmas miracle

Hey What's Up

Hey What’s Up | Portland | 2017

Finally got to do some photography in the streets of Portland, heading to the Pearl District on my free Saturday in the Rose City, on a splendid but freezing cold afternoon.

I started shooting people through restaurant windows, where I got some cool reactions from the guest like from this genuinely surprised guy. As always, making eye contact and throwing some genuine smiles did the trick.

But I also experienced my little Portland Christmas miracle, when I approached an interesting looking guy and asked him if I could make is portrait, which he readily accepted. So I snapped off a couple shots why doing some small talk with him. We chatted about why I’m in Portland, and I asked him what he was just up to. Telling me he was just coming off work in one of Portlands large theaters (the Armory  – where we happened to stand just in front), he suddenly asked if I would like to see one the shows that were on last night. When I said yes he just took me inside to the box office and presented me with a complementary ticket.

I was totally taken aback by is genuine friendliness and generosity. Just because I asked him for his portrait and was interested in what he does. So I got to see a Truman Capote Christmas play with integrated musical performances by two stunning singers, a show I enjoyed tremendously.

This is why I love Street Photography – you meet so many great and interesting people.

The photo was taken with my Olympus PEN-F and the mZuiko 25mm F/1.8 prime lens. Image specs 1/125 sec @ F/2.5 and ISO 200.

Have a great Sunday!

Marcus

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A Street Photographer’s Dialogue

Lunchbreak

Lunchbreak

For all my free tips and inspirations around Street Photography visit my Learning Center


A street photographer’s dialogue:

Street Photographer: “Excuse me, can I make a portrait of you?”

Subject: “Ahm…yes…yes, generally yes….but why?”

Street Photographer: “I’m a street photographer from Nuremberg, I like to document everyday life in the streets and meet interesting people, like you!”

Subject: “Ok, that’s interesting, but why did you pick me?”

Street Photographer: “Oh, I like your style. And you radiate a kindness that I like to capture. Great smile!”

Subject: “But I’m eating….it will look stupid, what shall I do with my box?”

Street Photographer (already snapping away): “Don’t worry, you look great, I’ll show you in a second!”

Subject (quite relaxed): “Ok, can’t really imagine that.”

Street Photographer, showing the back LCD of the camera: “Check it out, I really like this photo. Great street portrait of you!”

Subject (smiling): “Yes, it really is a nice picture. What are you gonna do with it?”

Street Photographer: “I have a street photography blog, where I post some of my photos. Would you mind if I post yours?”

Subject: “No, that’s ok!”

Street Photographer (smiling): “Here is my card with my website, check it out if you like. Thanks for letting me make your portrait, was great talking to you! Have a great day!

Subject (smiling): “Well, you too”

Street Photographer and subject continue their ways…..

Have a great weekend!

Marcus

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What’s there and what’s missing

Thinking Out Loud

Thinking Out Loud |Berlin | 2017

For all my free tips and inspiration around photography visit my Learning Center.

Putting a camera in someone’s face takes some getting used to. It is obviously something where you need the consent of the person you are photographing. This image I took with my Olympus PEN-F and the mZuiko 25mm F/1.8, the “nifty fifty” of micro four thirds (due to the m43 crop factor of 2). Which by the way is also an awesome portrait lens, if you are close, like a good arms length away. Image specs are 1/160 sec @ f/3.2 and ISO 200.

This is for sure not the prettiest of street portraits but it shows a couple of things that are important for this kind of photography.  This guy caught my eye, I walked up to him and asked if I could make his portrait. Turns out he is visiting from Montreal, Canada, and he was just looking for a place to eat some typical German food. A win-win for sure. I got to shoot his portraits, he got directions to a place where he could find some good beer and a “Schweinshaxe” (he asked me to type everything in his iPhone).

While we chatted I snapped away. I liked the shot of him best. I had asked him what he liked best about visiting Europe, he closed his eyes and thought hard. Asking people about something (e.g. what they like best about something….where they got their interesting outfit, glasses…what they are doing here, what is their profession…) puts their mind away from being photographed, puts them at ease and tends to draw some interesting poses, face expressions and gestures.

And this what is missing here. I wish he had made a hand gesture, putting his fingers to his face, adding interest to the shot. I didn’t want to ask him to do that, maybe I should have. But then again, I’m just starting this kind of street photography, and I will learn. And you can learn along here on the “Streets of Nuremberg”.

Have a great weekend!

Marcus

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My Eric Kim Workshop Experience

Eric Kim Workshop Making Of

Marcus & Eric | Berlin | 2017

Just a little over a week ago I had one of the most memorable photographic weekends ever when I attended the workshop “Conquer Your Fears in Street Photography” with Street Photo Legend Eric Kim in Berlin. For my in depth experiences from the workshop plus a bunch of both “behind the scenes” images and my workshop “results” continue after the jump…

(more…)

Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast | Berlin | 2017

Who says that Diamonds are a girl’s best friend? This photograph taken on the Streets of Berlin during my Eric Kim workshop last weekend certainly suggests otherwise. But it is another great example of how much fun it is to actually walk up to interesting looking people and ask them if you can “make” their portrait, something that I would not necessarily have done prior to it, a feedback shared by all participants (Eric’s blogpost with the best photos from my peers you can find here).

I know I owe you a full review of the workshop (at least I’m done selecting my photos and a few “making of” images), and I’m dying to take my newly acquired skills to the Streets of Nuremberg, but this weekend need to spend helping the significant other preparing the garden for winter and helping my big girl getting her apartment downtown ready for her move (yes, we’ve reached the stage where the first kid is leaving the house).

So in the meantime I leave you with the photo of this beauty and her beast, taken with my PEN-F and the mZuiko 25mm F/1.8 – my new favorite street shooting combo – as the 25mm (50mm full frame equivalent) is awesome for street portraits. Image specs are 1/180 sec @ f/2 and ISO 200.

Have a great weekend

Marcus

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Natural Thirst Quencher

Thirst

Thirst | Chennai | 2017

Today I want to share this portrait out of my archives, again from the Streets of Chennai, India. The lady just had treated herself to a coconut to quench her thirst on this very hot and humid afternoon. Beats a Coke, doesn’t it?

Image taken with a Canon Powershot G11, specs are 1/160 sec @ f/4,5 and ISO 200. As usual when on the streets I shot in P-Mode.

Tomorrow at 4:15 am my taxi will pick me up for the 30 minute trip to the airport. Then it’s off to Portland via Amsterdam. Looks like I trade the Nuremberg snow for the Portland rain. Right now I’d take Chennai over both 😉

Have a good week!

Marcus

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