What drew you to photography (and street photography in particular)?
Honestly, I don’t remember how it started. I have had an interest in photography from school age.
What I know is that photography helps me to express myself, to step outside of a boring, normal life. Break a routine. I tried many genres and ended doing street photography. The main reason – there is an honesty in it, lack of staginess. I think street photography is the cornerstone of all photography.
Where are your favorite places to shoot and why?
Streets, markets, events, tourist places – street photography is about people, interaction, life, and these places have plenty of it.
This is the best decisive moment image!!
Can you tell me what the heck is going on here? I’m so curious to know.
I frequently shoot in the Old City of Jerusalem – this place is pulsing with life, energy, people and interactions. Jews, Arabs, tourists, secular, religious…
In this particular shot, “marching” guy is local popularity. Funny and chatty. There is a rumor that he is a thief and some kind of authority among local thieves…anyway. The boy? He’s just some local teenager that started to pick on him.
So, the guy started to march on him, partly as a joke, partly to show off before other locals. I often feel some kind of jolt inside saying: there is a Frame. So, here I was lucky to raise my camera and take a few shots.
This one is one of my favorites too:
What’s the story behind this image?
This one was taken inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. I walked in circles inside this place looking for frames and finally, I saw this trio waiting for a liturgy to start.
Once again I felt a jolt – and took a shot. Then I stepped closer and took another one. And another one. I suppose the guy just didn’t want to look at me. Or maybe he was praying.
What have been the biggest challenges for you in street photography and how have you overcome them?
The biggest challenge to overcome is myself. I am really not an extrovert and it’s hard for me to photograph strangers. Particularly at the current stage of my development as a photographer, when I walk alone and use only a short (28mm) lens which requires getting really close to the subject.
Walking alone helps me to concentrate and get into the “mood of the street” and the short lens is necessary for honesty. If you want to take a good street photo – get closer to the subject.
What is your most memorable image or experience in street photography?
I vividly remember my first success in street photography. Or even in street portraits.
I just started in this genre after shooting architecture, flowers, animals, staged portraits, etc. and I took a part in photowalk in the Old City, Jerusalem. So, my group comes across a group of loitering children. We all started to take shots of them.
Next meeting of the group we discussed results and it just so happened that only my photo got the appraisal of the teacher and group. It was 19 years ago, I had my ups and downs but I still remember this warm feeling of success.
Here it is:
What has street photography taught you? (About life, photography, people, anything really…)
People are really not as scary as you think. And don’t try to recreate your successful shots – look for something new or you will end with a bunch of almost identical cliché shots.
Thanks so much Dmitry. We really enjoyed talking to you!
Editor’s Note: To learn more about Dmitry and see more of his work, be sure to visit his Flickr account. Dmitry was selected from our Flickr group (Street Photography Magazine), where we regularly choose photographers’ work to be published in our magazine.