I recently picked up street photography after a decade hiatus from film - And I'm certainly not the only one. Today Everyone is a photographer, which is great, only that people are less comfortable then they've ever been in front of a camera. Of course social media is the biggest blame, but I also think camera phones specifically cheapen the whole act of taking someone's photo. With all of the advantages I have on the street using a smart phone as camera, I still get the most passive and accepted responses when using my old 1960's 120 film camera. People understand that it not only cost money, but there is a whole process involved before their 'street portrait' ever sees the light of day. And I think the older generation at least still has respect for that. My response to the digital vs. film debate when it comes to street photography is that film is alot less likely to piss people off. I don't look for angry people and I certainly don't look to anger them. I know what I'm doing is legal, but I'm also aware that just because it is legal doesnt mean the law has somehow done all of the ethical thinking for me. That's something I've gotten a sense for, and though I never ask for photo, I almost always share my results or contact info with whomever the subject. I still 'shoot from the hip' with my phone, quite litteraly, but using an old twin lens reflex has made me think more about my shot, hence the phrase 'Think more, shoot less.' This mindset has made it a much more fulfilling and meditative activity.


Joe Venuti, Photographs