Recently there was an interesting post on Photodoto about Photographing people in public places by Elizabeth West. I had left a comment asking how I could go about getting candid photographs. Most of the ones that I’ve taken on the streets of Dhaka look posed. Mainly because the folks in our part of the world are very friendly and the minute they see you taking photographs they’ll come up and ask you to take one of theirs. Like this one on top.
Elizabeth replied to my comment saying that I should try and be inconspicuous and take photographs before people noticed you. I found that I had been doing this already. The problem with this approach was that I needed to be in a car and usually zipping by, shooting whenever I got the opportunity. A lot of moments get missed, some turn out out of focus but you do get an occasional gem. The one below doesn’t fall into the gem category but is one where i haven’t been noticed.
Another way of taking sort of candid photographs was to be part of a group of photographers and then look around for subjects who are not looking at you. I discovered this a few months ago. I’m usually on my own when I take photographs and so have been able to try this method out just twice. The photograph of the two children below is one such example.
One other method suggested by Alexander, in the same thread and one followed by professionals, was to stay in one location for a while till people had lost interest in you and then take the kind of photographs you need. These would make for some truly candid photographs and it is something I plan to try.