To concentrate on shooting with one focal length of 40-50mm, (full frame).
I made all of these images in one session, late in the afternoon and early evening. As I was using my 50mm f1.8 lens, I also decided to push the boundaries of my low light capabilities. In this first image I sought to capture the attention of the little boy on the street drummer. It was very crowded and I had to gain the best vantage point that I could. I like the way the two main figures compete for attention, There are distractions though such as the red jacket. I added a post crop vignette darkening to try to bring greater attention to the two main figures.
This chap had gone to great lengths to conceal his identify and so there seemed to be little point in trying to capture his face. Ironically, just as I photographed him ‘unaware’, he was drawing CCTV cameras within his artwork. I hope that I have managed to portray his work as ‘performance’, details such as the large silver amplifier show that this was far more than a furtive graffiti artist at work. Despite the very slow shutter speed I managed to obtain an acceptably sharp photograph in the circumstances.
Made after dark, I like the way that the 50mm gives a realistic view of this stall. The people in the queue are normally proportioned and the camera’s ‘gaze’ through the gap in the crowd gives a very normal view of the female cook who seems happy with the way things are going.
I made quite a few shots before I fully got into the swing of picking out ‘moments’ within this concert crowd. I could see that the beer drinker, (just left of centre), was watching what I was doing and I waited until his direct gaze stood out from the crowd before making this image.
During this assignment I found that I valued the 50mm viewpoint for its simplicity. I deliberately chose to use a fixed length lens so that I would be forced to move about to frame shots – this was a valuable discipline. Similarly, the lack of optical distortion meant that I felt that the images depended upon content rather than, for example, optical effects, for their impact. Another useful discipline – I’ll be sure to periodically restrict myself to a fixed 50mm lens just to see what I can do. Lastly, although not part of the brief, I enjoyed the speed and unobtrusiveness of this lens – it extended the lighting conditions in which I could shoot and proved to be relatively unobtrusive in a crowd.