What attracts you to the street photography? What street photography is one of the disciplines photo more you love? Congratulations friend, reader, you’re in the right place, because today I bring you a mega guide where you meet all the tips, tricks, and secrets for taking the plunge to the street, camera in hand and achieve authentic and I M P R E S S I O N A N T E S photographs street.

Very recently I told you that the best way to learn photography is to practice street photography. You can read the reasons in the link, while I advance that it’s a genre so completely and so fascinating, that if you control it, you just dominating virtually any discipline.

That’s why, whatever the genre that interests you most strongly recommend you to practice street photography, how? That is what we will see today. Take good notes of everything that I am going to share with you here and use this guide whenever you need it.


The street photography or street photography is one of photography that captures the human essence in relation to the urban environment in a sincere way.

It is a general definition, and is that there is great controversy with what is and what is not street photography, but I’ll leave some points generally accepted what is and what is not street photography:

  • It is not a photograph prepared or inn.
  • It is not necessary that you appear a person but yes its footprint, it is evident that a person has been there and has left some kind of trail.
  • It is a picture that tells a story or conveys an emotion.

“If you can smell the street by looking at the photo, it is street photography.”

Bruce Gilden

To the naked eye, street photography may seem simple. We all carry a camera always on top when we by the street, which makes it very accessible. However, to make a street photography of truth, a good photo of street, it is not so easy.

Peeeeeero… it is why we are here! To learn, right? And to make it easier. If you follow the tips I am going to give to throughout this guide, and practices (this is very important and I will never tire of repeating it), you will wake up to the real photographer of the street that you carry inside, and you’ll get photos that you will surprise yourself.

Before you throw I want to make a couple of clarifications are in order to avoid possible and typical confusion about what is and is not street photography.


It is possible to confuse street photography with documentary photography, however, though they share many aspects, and the first can be understood as part of the second, they have clear differences.

The street photography is spontaneous, while the documentary requires a prior investigation to send a clear message. The first aims to excite, the second claim, or report.


For many years they have been the same, however, in the recent times has emerged a new photographic style that makes necessary a distinction and separation so as not to confuse the real concept of street photography, this is the street photography that responds more to photography in the street photography of the street.

In street photography, the important thing is not the story or the emotion, but the technical and the aesthetic. In addition, the urban photography is based in photographs that were prepared, while street photography imply that it is a photograph sincere, spontaneous, without any type of intervention. Don’t you line, yes, there will be pictures that can be understood both as a picture of street and urban, but others in which the difference is very evident.


I’ve already advance that street photography is done in urban environments that don’t I told you yet is that not necessarily has to be in the street. You can make pictures of street in public spaces such as stations, transport, restaurants, shopping malls, etc

The fundamental premise is, I insist, is that they are candids, where not involved in the scene, that nothing has been prepared or handled. And that is not a detail or individual portrait that did not have anything related with the street.

It is important to convey the sensations of what is happening, capture the atmosphere and convey the noises, the smells, the temperature and everything that has to do with the senses beyond sight.


Do you want to know a secret? The team photographer of the street is the simplest that you can take in the face. Seriously, with a camera (with lens, of course) is enough for you.

And you can do street photography with any camera. It’s that easy. In this discipline, as I said, it is more important to convey an emotion that you get an impeccable technique. It doesn’t matter if you photograph with a mobile phone or a dslr full frame last model. Matter that captures the essence of the street, that’s emotions, you remove the viewer, to feel the photo in the guts. If you are able to do so with a mobile phone, nothing prevents it.

Although like you I will tell later, it is essential to go unnoticed, so it is advisable to carry a team, discreet, in addition to light, for the sake of being able to spend hours walking without your neck and back, suffer the consequences.

But of course, that we already know, you sure you want to tell you more, especially if you are thinking of what camera to buy.


Finally comes one of the points that were waiting with more impatience, am I wrong? Let’s go to the mess that I have a lot of things to tell you, but let me before you say something very important. There are two fundamental aspects that you need to master in order to make a good street photography: lighting and composition. I insist, fundamental. In the links you will find guides, very complete on each of them, to deepen in them and can apply the knowledge learned in the street. In addition, a few tips for you about below are related with the light and the composition.

But let’s continue with the rest of the tips. As a team we have already spoken, what I understood, you just remember two words: discreet and lightweight 😉 .

  1. Discretion. I know, I am a very heavy with this. But it is really important that you be discreet so as not to interfere in the scene and capture it in a sincere way, as it is happening. And not only with respect to the equipment. For this reason it is important that your attitude and your outfit to be as unobtrusive as possible. Nothing of going with a t-shirt orange fluoride that will make you be the center of attention.
  2. Respect. Avoids capture images denigrating and if someone is upset because he photograph (rarely happens) he smiles and apologizes, in addition, erase the picture if you ask for it.
  3. Carry your camera in hand and not hanging in your neck, or you will miss more than a snapshot. Also you will spend more unnoticed with it in the hand that hung.
  4. Pay attention to the light. Depending on the light, a story or a scene can be completely changed. The sensations that causes a harsh light have nothing to do with a diffuse light. Salt at different hours of the day, from sunrise until the night closed. Observe the changes of light and how it affects the scene. Take notes as needed, maybe some day want to go to a specific place looking for a specific light.
  5. Makes a good composition. Also I have advance how important it is to take care of the composition to achieve an interesting photograph, that will attract and catch the eyes of more than a nanosecond.
  1. Looking for scenarios that say something. We talk about street photography, so the scenario is to co-star. A good place to help you contextualize and build the story.
  2. History and emotion. A street photography without one of these ingredients, or both, is not a street photography.
  3. Looking for interesting subjects, but remember to photograph them within the context and not as an individual portrait, but it will be just a portrait.
  4. Capture gestures and expressions that speak for themselves. A look can be the absolute star of your image. Pay attention to what’s going on around you.
  5. Do not copy. It is easy to fall into the temptation to reproduce those images that impact us but it is a mistake, in addition to the plagiarism it is neither ethical nor legal. You try to capture the scenes with your look personal and unique. That’s not to say that there photographing reflections, silhouettes, juxtapositions, contrasts, backlights, details, games of lights and shadows, humorous scenes, lines, geometries, etc, these are topics and resources that work very well in spite of being the typical clichés, but that and you can make them yours if the traps from your look and not from the other.
  6. Make sure that the spectator will be stunned. If you get that, without a doubt, your image will work. To create ambiguity, surprise, or make the public wonder how nose you’ve done this picture is the icing on the cake.
  7. Test out each day with a different lens or shoot with a single focal length. With time, you will discover what focal length you feel most comfortable.
  8. Salt with an idea in his head. It is not something you have to do always, but going out with an idea in mind will help you be alert on this topic and to concentrate the efforts. For example, you can go out looking for scenes that convey a specific emotion (loneliness, longing, insecurity, excitement) or one type of subject, as lords with hat. As such, they are only examples or ideas. Think of something that will motivate you to put the focus there on your next outing.
  9. For the night. By the night of the circumstances and the stories change, the city seems different and although it may seem that now is not the time for the lack of light, it is not so. Use the light from street lamps, windows, lights of cars, bus shelters advertising and any other point of light that will help illuminate the scene to capture the essence of the night. I assure you that you can achieve instant large impact.
  10. Giving it a title. You try to put a caption to your photo, if you are not able to, rethink if your image of a true account of something or have a sufficient impact.
  11. I know agile. You have to be very fast, the scene vanishes in a jiffy. It is important to know your camera to not get to tinker buttons at the most inopportune moment, and to make adjustments prepared. Pretty soon, I’ll talk about the recommended settings.
  12. The best zoom lens is your feet. It’s not about being discreet hiding behind a telephoto lens as if you were a paparazzi, but do not call the attention. This does not prevent you from approaching the scene and get inside. It is the best way to make you feel the viewer is a participant in the story. Approach. Without fear.
  13. Dress appropriately. Eye, that discretion is not the only important thing in terms of clothing. The comfort is also key. Can you imagine having to drive you home because you are not warm enough? Or do you go with the empty hands because you are frying the neck? Before going out to it can kick you in the city in search of the best street scenes, be sure to take the right clothes, several layers if you are going to be many hours because the temperature can vary by several degrees (more or less depending on the part of the world you’re in, of course), a cap or a hat and comfortable shoes. Do not neglect this small detail, you can make the difference between going home with something interesting or frustration as a single capture.
  14. Observe the environment. The observation is crucial in street photography. Observe everything that happens around you will be the only way to capture the stories that have taken place, the decisive moments and to anticipate the moments more amazing. And not only when you go with the camera, the observation also you can practice when you go without it, when you’re walking, on the subway or sipping coffee on a terrace. Look around you and less to the screen of the mobile 😉 .
  1. Avoids the errors unforgivable. There are mistakes and errors, which are not condoned in street photography are: manipulate a scene, retouch in excess or go to the edit settings, photograph destitute for the sake of it or to put water marks, for example. Flee them as one who flees from the devil.
  2. Better to go without company. It is easier to move and your companions do not despair. If this is not possible, take advantage of the situation, he sees chatting quietly without losing sight of what’s going on around you, this will help you to get a bit more invisible.
  3. Practice, practice and practice, there will be days that you come back home without anything really interesting, but you will accumulate experience in the observation and gather speed for framing and reset parameters when necessary. Without realizing it, you’ll automating all of these actions and will arrive on the day in which you’ll be able to achieve stunning images without batting an eye.
  4. Do not dream, or wait to travel to big cities. Your best street photography can be in your same neighborhood, is the more accessible you are, the more you know, the one that allows you to study the light of a corner, to return each time you need it, and with the more connected you can be to convey its essence. It starts by him. If you get bored you can explore other neighborhoods, but get it out of your head that only New York provides great opportunities for street photography.
  5. From home. And if you can’t leave the house, you know that you can also do street photography from your window or from your balcony. There are many street photographers who have proven in the last few months.
  6. Patience. Arm yourself with her, I’ve already warned that it is not easy to get a good photo of street, you can’t control the light, or change the scene, or repeat to correct an error. You have what you have and lasts, a sigh. It is a mix of luck, training, observation and perseverance. Is not to reach and succeed. But if in truth you are passionate about, you will not mind try it as many times as necessary.
  7. Have fun. The street photography is to live it, feel it, love it… don’t take it as an obligation, to obtain great results you have to turn it into a passion. Enjoy the scenarios, characters, plays with them and capture them with your camera and with your heart photographer.
  8. The camera is always with you. The most important thing is not to plan, though many times to help, or to carry all of the directions to the letter, the important thing is to get out, practice, shoot, lose your fear of photographing the soul of your city or the city where you are visiting. Don’t forget your camera or when you go to make a comment, your chance may be right around the corner.
  9. Creativity. When you believe that you lack the ideas refer to sets or projects.
  10. Edition. Do not fear the edition of your photography. This is a necessary step, the last to close the process from the time you saw the scene in your head. The edition will help you to highlight what really is important in the image, to bring out details and modulate the tone emotive photography. This is not to put here or remove it from there, no, it is not to manipulate because it would not be street photography, but adjust shadows and lights, focus, color, highlight textures where you consider or reframe if necessary.
  11. Knowing how to choose. To edit a photograph is not only to reveal it, is to know which of the images within a series of frames similar is the more powerful, the more interest you can wake up and more power off. Learn how to discard what does not work and choose what’s best is another essential step that you must give the author of street photography.

What do you want more tips for street photography? In the link you will find up to 100 tips express.


Beyond these tips, there are some tricks and techniques that will help you to become invisible and to capture stunning images without being discovered. Do you want to know them? Continue reading.

  • Shooting from the waist. It takes practice, but you can be lucky enough to get a picture of a mind-boggling from a lower angle.
  • Photography from the screen. Look at the screen of your camera is more discreet than looking through the viewfinder. If your camera has Live View mode, take the opportunity to frame and shoot as to call the attention. In addition, if the screen is collapsible, will allow you to shoot from other angles, more interesting.
  • Shoot with your camera from the mobile phone. If you have the option, connect your camera to your smartphone with the corresponding application and handle it from the mobile phone. So no one will know that your camera is taking pictures.
  • Using the technique in your benefit. Although street photography is more emotion than technique, you can use this to your advantage. A sweep to transmit motion or light; fast speeds to freeze; low-key or high, for most dramatic images; hyperfocal, to get more planes in focus; you can play with the external flash, if you can, to achieve images aggressive or harsh, and even with effects that impact, etc
  • Don’t ask for permission. If you need a express consent, ask for it after, not before taking the picture or the spontaneity will be vanished. With the image on your memory card, it asks for permission to use it where you intend.
  • Shoot in burst. To photograph sequences using blast. In this way you will be able to choose the image with greater impact, the best first step, the posture most interesting or the look more incisive.
  • Technique of the hunter vs. fisherman. These two techniques are very popular among street photographers. In the first, you go out to hunt the photo, you wander without leave to observe your surroundings and when you find just the thing that you want, you shoot. In the second, the fisherman’s, you find an interesting place and wait patiently until the right subject that gives meaning to the photography.


By very fond of black and white photography, if you follow me you already know, both languages are equally valid in the street photography. While the black-and-white is timeless and you focus on the story, the color can give a game a tremendous level of composition or of emotions.

Each of these languages have their particularities, their supporters and their detractors. At the end, each has to find a way to express themselves with the best feel. You decide if you prefer color or black-and-white (or both) to tell your stories.

Careful, not everything is worth.

The color has its nuances, the brain your way to interpret it, is not simply see a scene and photograph in color and already. No, the color has to bring something to the table, by contrast, by the atmosphere that you create, for repeat, or for whatever reason.


With respect to the monochrome, not all the photos work in grayscale. Sometimes a picture is held by the color, though we are not aware of the lack of practice, but the stripping away of this, it loses strength. Therefore, it is important that at the time of composing a black and white photography be clear from the beginning that it will be in gray scale, and take the decisions accordingly. In this mega guide you will find all the tips and tricks to get spectacular black and white photographs.


I know that you are waiting for the recipes. The ask it very often and what else I would that it were so easy. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work as well, because this is not an exact science but an art in which there are infinite number of situations. But that doesn’t mean we can’t do that from some parameters or settings that are recommended, and, from there, depending on the situation, to readjust what is necessary.

Let’s look at how to set up your camera for street photography:

  • Modes semi-automatic. Away from automatic mode that you will not recommend it in this case (and almost none), are the modes semi manual of aperture Priority or speed Priority. These modes are more suitable since they allow a greater flexibility that the Manual Mode. The first thing that you need to ask yourself is what you need or what you want to achieve. Are you interested in anything beyond the approach? Use Aperture Priority with f/5.6 or f/8, for example. On the contrary, if you need a minimum speed for which your reason comes out crisp and shoots with Priority on speed and the camera will calculate the rest of the parameters to achieve a correct exposure.
  • ISO. It is preferable to have an interesting photo with noise that lose a photo, do not fear to raise the ISO to get your image, always up to the limits you tolerate your eyes clear. In some cameras have the option of adjusting ISO auto maximum. Take a look at the manual of your camera, and adjust it in the limit bearable for you.
  • RAW format. Starting from the idea that you are going to edit your image and make the best of it in processing, I recommend, without a doubt, to use the RAW format that saves all the information of the scene. Now, if you’re not thinking of editing your image for anything in the world, the better it will be in JPG format and will take up less space (the burst will also be faster).
  • Modes of approach. If you’re photographing stationary objects, the mode most appropriate approach is the simple mode (AF-S or One Shot). On the contrary, to capture a subject in motion, you will work best mode of continuous focus (AF-C or The Servo). Ah, yes, of course, those situations in which you are not clear on what is going to happen or if your subject is going to move at any moment… in that case, if your camera has it, set the mode to AF-A or The Focus. What doubts or any questions you hover the head? The answers in this mega-guide about the focus on photography.
  • Modes of exposure measurementFor scenes with homogeneous light, the most easy and effective evaluative metering. However, when you find yourself with contrasts of lights and shadows, seek to capture a silhouette, a back-light, etc, I recommend a spot metering.
  • Activates the image stabilizer. Unless you use a tripod for long exposures, activates the stabilizer and you will be able to use speed to something slower.
  • Active the silent mode. Some cameras have a silent mode. If this is your case, activate it. Remember the mantra: to go unnoticed.

Regardless of what you decide according to the circumstances, the important thing is that you have your camera ready when you are. That is to say, that if circumstances change because you change your scenario, varies the light, the reason I seek, etc, resetting the settings and make some other test to make sure that when the time comes, not you going to miss it for a bad fit.


What I said at the beginning of the article, of course you can do street photography with your mobile phone. What you cannot do is street photography without feeling it. But back to the topic, if you want to make the most of your smartphone street photography, don’t miss these tips.

What you’re probably wondering what are the mobile phones with the best cameras? In the link I leave you my favorites.


Photographing on the street has their legal risks. These depend on each country, so that it never hurts to learn, especially when you travel and it is not your place of residence.

Nor is it the same thing that you do to the picture by simple personal satisfaction, or with intent to expose it, sell it, or profit in any other way. In this case you will need a written consent.

And here and in Beijing, if someone asks you to delete a photo you’ve taken, that is your right to delete it. Yes, as I said before, is not something that will happen often if you don’t you hide as if you were committing a crime, because then yes you will raise up suspicions and it may be that more than one person will ask for explanations. Moral: don’t hide, that photography is not to do anything bad.


Ay, friend, who has not gone through the typical frustrations and fears before stepping out into the street to take pictures. The fear is natural, and it’s not bad. The important thing is to deal with it.

The worst thing that can happen is they ask you to delete a photo, which I repeat, is not frequent. But if happened to you, just explain why you do photos, do you want to teach the picture and delete it if you insist that you do. And all this without-losing-the-smile.

With respect to the frustrations, are part of the journey of learning photography, regardless of the discipline, don’t throw in the towel because it will come also. In the link you will find how to deal with it.


Instagram, with its lights and its shadows, is a great source of inspiration in street photography is concerned. In this social network you can discover the work of the amazing photographers, train your eye and learn how to distinguish what works and what does not, and sharing your images so that you can see at any point of the planet with just one click. (By the way, do you follow us already? This is our IG account).

I want to leave some resources to deepen in the street photography through Instagram: