Somewhere there was an old street photographer that said, “Be careful who you shoot; they may shoot back.”
Probably a good tip for anyone that wants to pick up their camera and head into the alleys and other urban areas to practice the art called “street photography”.
While I’ve come close, I’ve never actually had a person “shoot back” — at least with a gun. I’ve been threatened, yelled at and cursed, but so far no one has pointed a Smith and Wesson in my direction.
Once you get over your nervousness about photographing complete strangers then you are one step away from getting what will arguably the best shots in your photographic career. Just use some common sense in who you photograph.
If you see someone that you think is dangerous — like a drug addict or someone already yelling and cursing — There are two rules and maturity behind a camera lens will tell you which rule to follow.
Rule #1 Don’t photograph drug addicts or people who are already obviously angry.
Rule #2 Be prepared to break rule #1 if it’s going to get you the shot of a lfietime.
Again, only experience can tell you which rule to follow at any given moment.
Normally if you pick your shooting locations using your brains, you won’t be as nervous because you know you can photograph without getting into a fistfight. Many times, when you do get caught snapping away, if you handle it properly, the encounter can turn into a friendship.
So plan ahead, grab the camera and step into the street for a different kind of photography!