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Welcoming myself & seeking your introductions ;-)

Discussion in 'Introductions...' started by BeyondIthaka, Oct 16, 2020.

  1. BeyondIthaka

    BeyondIthaka Member

    Hi all,

    I've just joined the forum. Driven to find solidarity by what has felt a more hostile public towards street photographers. I'm a social scientist by profession and amatuer documentary photographer/street photographer. I'd like to become better at every kind of photography but one stop at a time!

    I have an Insta and Flickr account under the same name - BeyondIthaka.

    I don't use Flickr much, should I?

    Based in South West England. Happy to collaborate.

  2. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    What form does this hostility take?
  3. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the forum. It has been very quiet on the “hostility to street” front. Some years ago now it was much more a hot topic. I’ve got an AP issued lens cloth somewhere printed with “photographer’s rights” which was the outcome of a campaign. Much depends on how you go about it. For me I generally try to avoid people in my pictures if I can and at most have them as incidental background. I hate being photographed on purpose and I can understand others feeling the same.

    Flickr is what you make it.

    I find it useful as a repository for my pics in that I can access them anywhere and from any device and for privately sharing family photos because we are well spread out as a family. The pics are also organised by subject. Before I used Lightroom I used Flickr as an index to find a pic, then I could see the date and file-number and find it on my computer. Now I like the camera roll. It is like a diary, I can look back and see what I was doing this day in previous years. I don’t do anything with the social side of it. If a picture gets invited to be posted in a group I’ll usually do it but I don’t deliberately post into groups.

    Most pictures I put up in this site are hosted on Flickr. From LR I now automatically resize to 800 px long edge as part of the Flickr publication process which suits the forum rules. If the picture is public then I stick a watermark on it. If I make it specifically for AP I don’t (watermarks are deprecated) but I make it private, it will display on the forum page but cannot be followed.
  4. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    A big welcome. Please join the various discussion since new blood and ideas are highly valued.:D
    BeyondIthaka likes this.
  5. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

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  6. BeyondIthaka

    BeyondIthaka Member

    Thanks for the reply, here are a few of my examples of 'hostility' perhaps that's too strong a word.

    (OK - first time uploading images - my files were too big - and now they're screenshots and very inadequate!)

    I was standing on a bridge taking this shot down the canal in Hungerford. I vaguely noticed the couple of the barge nearest camera. I went to walk along the path and the man jumped down from his barge and blocked the gate. He said that this was private. I asked what, the path? He said his barge, why was I photographing him, I can’t photograph private property. I won’t bore you with my discussion, explaining to him that I was allowed to photograph… He said he was a photographer and knew the law. But the hostility bit was really his blocking of the path. He refused to move, suggested I take another route and still wouldn’t move. I could have insisted on going past – by that time he was saying it was all OK me photographing. But he still didn’t budge.

    Cardiff Lush.jpg

    Next, I’m standing quite a few metres away from the shop in the middle of busy paved shopping area in central Cardiff. I take this photo with an old Minolta film camera. Suddenly a young lady runs up to me from the shop. “You have to delete that. You can’t take photos of the shop.” I explain that I can and that I didn’t understand why she was harassing me. Again, she says she knows the law too because she has a degree in photography! But insists I can’t take photos of the shop, would I like to come and speak to her manager. “No, thanks, I’m not wasting my time.” And tell her only a court can order me to delete or destroy a photo. If she had paid attention, she’d have noticed it was film camera anyway. I actually talked to the local police later about this, they assured me it was cool to take photos but maybe people were more nervous because of Covid.


    Finally, I’m in Oxford and decide to try to capture these guys doing jumps in front of the Business School. (I was actually shooting on film mainly but haven’t developed it yet. So, here’s a digital capture.) The guy in the green jacket approaches me. “Can I see the photos you’ve taken? Can you delete any photo you have of us.” By then I only had my film camera out, “Sorry?” I ask. “Were you taking photos of us? You were pointing the camera at us.” On this occasion, again, I explain that I can take whatever photos I like in public spaces. “What are you doing it for?” He responds. “I’m a social photographer, it’s a hobby.” I also tell him that I wasn’t interested in him or his friends anyway. The hostility was the sense of right to ask to see and expectation that if requested I’d have to delete any photos.

    I do lots of street photography and in three weeks have had more people challenge me than in 3 years. It’s been weird.
  7. BeyondIthaka

    BeyondIthaka Member

    Thanks, Mark101! Ideas I have in buckets load! ;) Time is less abundant, but hope to contribute.
  8. BeyondIthaka

    BeyondIthaka Member

    Many thanks for those reflections on Flickr, PeteRob. And the background on previous experiences of hostility. I'm primarily a street/documentary photographer so I do expect a little bit of questionning from the public. But nothing will deter me from the hobby. o_O
  9. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    It's possible that the current situation is making some people more aggressive.

    For what it's worth: I've been making candid pictures of people on and off for more than 50 years and never had a problem. I put it down to practising some simple rules taken from a magazine article in the 1960s...
    • Dress to fit in with those around you.
    • Stand well back and keep in the shadows.
    • Use a long lens but not so long it's obvious what you're doing.
    • Raise the camera, take the picture and put it down again in one fluid motion.
    • Never show excessive interest in what others are doing.
    • Don't lurk - keep on the move.
    • Above all: be confident but not brash.
    Some pictures...

    At work in the street Exmouth GX7 P1130650.JPG
    Boy and girl outside Bath Post Office.jpg
    Couple outside the New Inn Long Buckby Wharf R1_02834.JPG
    Crane operator readin newspaper in cab DSC01183.JPG
    Young woman in Hall Austria 5758.JPG
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  10. BeyondIthaka

    BeyondIthaka Member

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  11. John Fantastic

    John Fantastic Active Member

    Welcome Ithaca. :)
    BeyondIthaka likes this.

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