Shooting from the Hip


Many street photographers when they are starting out think that shooting from the hip is the best way to go as they build their courage to shoot candidly and risk being caught (as I once did). Shooting from the hip is in fact, in my view, one of the hardest things to do, as not only are you looking for stories and thinking about composition, but everything becomes a challenge.

And those challenges include getting the focal length right (setting the camera in manual focus and then waiting for subjects to pass in range, and trying not to knock the focus out by accident), sharpness (still holding the camera steady to avoid camera shake as it is so easy to have a less firm grasp when the camera is in one hand or hanging around your neck) and, the hardest thing of all, making the camera an extension of your body – you have to practice and practice to start to understand what you camera will take when you are not looking through the view finder.

Here are some shots from the hip taken at the Southbank in London… There was a lot of lurking… and looking suspicious… possibly even more so than when I shoot with my camera to my face…