My love for street photography began not by seeing the works of some of the masters in the field but rather from my father.
I can recall walking down the street or sitting in a mall or restaurant with him when he would point something out with a nod of his head. When he did this I always knew there would be a remarkable person, place, or thing. He loved to share what he found interesting; and we would enjoy it for a moment together. He was an observant man who was always on the lookout for something to see…something to share. Through him and his fascination with the surroundings in everyday life, I learned to appreciate the world we live in and I find myself moving through each day watching as he did for something of interest.
My father’s fascination with the people and things around us has carried over into my life and into my photography. I find great joy in documenting things of interest through the lens of a camera so that they can be shared, not just for a moment with those who are with me, but instead for all times with anyone anywhere.
Living near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania has afforded me the opportunity to practice the art of street photography in many unique neighborhoods. I make frequent visits to the Southside, North Shore, Downtown, The Strip District, and many of the surrounding communities. The people, architecture, landscapes of southwestern PA are loaded with fascinating images worthy of capturing and sharing.
Alone with his thoughts…as I photographed him I couldn’t help but wonder what he thinks about as he spends his days, apparently alone, with nothing to do and nowhere to be. A solitary figure ignored by all who passed by. He never acknowledged me when I paused to take his photograph and asked how he was doing.
Taken at Point State Park in Pittsburgh PA. I couldn’t help but recall episodes of the Sopranos as I walked by this group of bicyclists taking a break from their ride, huddled around a table they could have been plotting who knows what. Caught by the glare of the leader, I snapped my photo and quickly moved away from what was in reality just a group of gentleman out for a pleasant ride and fellowship.
Out on a sunny day a few blocks away from Pittsburgh’s famous Strip District, I found myself caught in a spring shower. As I huddled under the overhang of a building, I was given the opportunity to take some photos of people as they made their way to where they needed to be. These two ladies seemed to be having fun in the rain, one even yelling a greeting to me as I took their photo, reminding me that in any situation we can still maintain a smile.
I capture a moment of peace and quiet away from the work of day in the Strip District of Pittsburgh, PA. She was sitting alone enjoying the afternoon even with all the hustle and bustle around her. This is in stark contrast to “The Man”.
Photographed at the Bloomfield Italian Festival near Pittsburgh, PA. On this day I was determined not to worry if people knew I was photographing them, not to be shy about it at all. I stood patiently behind her waiting for her to turn around so I could catch what I hoped would be the perfect expression; and I wasn’t disappointed. I shot at less than 2 feet from her with my lens set at 17mm, finally over my fear of being discovered. This was a photo that changed how I shoot and what lenses I use when doing street photography.
All photos were shot in raw and processed using Photoshop. I love actions and filters…love playing with Photoshop almost as much as shooting the photos. With some photos, I know as soon as I see them just what effects I want to apply…a little more clarity here, less saturation, a filter to achieve just that right contrast and black and white look. Other times I experiment, learning more as I go, making adjustments in Photoshop and trying different filters to get the desired look.
For me, editing a photo is part of the process of having captured that perfect image to be shared. I go about the business of dressing it up right to be ready to present to the world.
Post Processing Tools
- Alien Skin Exposure
- Nik Collection
- Topaz Labs
- Greater Than Gatsby Action sets
- Little Lusker Action sets
- Nikon d7100
- Tamron 17-50mm
- Tokina 11-16mm
- Nikon 85mm
- Nikon 25-300mm
I am currently fortunate enough to work for a company that allows me travel to new cities. Since my mornings are free, I grab my gear and head out finding new areas to shoot in while looking for the perfect scene to photograph.
Future plans include visits to some well known events and cities to shoot in: Times Square on New Year’s Eve, Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and Mardi Gras.
Also in the works is a new series entitled The Road I Traveled featuring street photography and urban exploration photos from the cities I visit in my travels.