Unplanned but true to nature
One of the biggest mistakes you can make with a camera is to put it down, you may forget how much fun it is to walk about with a camera for no reason other than you can. One of the best ways to have fun with a camera is so-called ‘street photography’. To quote Wikipedia:
Street photography, also sometimes called candid photography, is photography conducted for art or enquiry that features unmediated chance encounters and random incidents within public places.
In essence don’t plan to photograph anything in particular, just take a picture of anything you see whilst out on a stroll.
Obviously you want to avoid putting a camera in peoples faces but you might be surprised by the reactions you get. Performers will go the extra mile in a hope that you may be able to gain them some exposure on Instagram, businessmen will tell you to (not so politely) move along, and sometimes you may just go completely unnoticed.
To take a photo in public without drawing too much attention means taking a relatively small lens, but you need it to be big enough to actually catch a shot without being a nuisance. This is why Micro Four Thirds cameras are so popular with street photographers and backpackers. Lenses are half the size whilst offering the same equivalent field of view of a much larger full frame lens.
The shot above was taken with a Tokina 300mm f/6.3 reflex lens. Reason I used this lens, it’s the one that was on the camera and I forgot to pack my others on a business trip to Singapore. The benefit of a reflex lens should be obvious in this environment, it is small and offers huge reach in a small package, not to mention a very unique perspective.
So if you are reading this and haven’t used your camera in a while just pick it up one day and go for a walk, you might surprise yourself with the photos you end up with.