Archives for posts with tag: street

Since I had discovered my passion for photography my sole focus was on how to make it into a career before I quickly realised that what I liked shooting wasn’t going to start making me any kind of sustainable income anytime soon. I ditched the idea, or rather, put it aside for now and started looking at what I enjoy and making pictures for myself. I like shooting candid street and portraits and have really integrated it into my life. I carry a camera at all times and have found that I’m far happier shooting everyday moments and that you don’t have to go anywhere to really capture something that is special, at least to me anyway.

Since deciding to shoot for myself I feel that I have made a lot of progress in my photography, I have defined what it is that I like and have concentrated on it. I joined the Arcanum, an online mentoring program with street photography as my discipline and I take candid portraits of friends and family whenever I get the chance. I have an Instagram account that I try to upload new material to every other day and it drives me to constantly shoot and refine my technique. Editing is extremely important and I do not enjoy sifting through tons of shots, which forces me to take more time shooting and shoot less but more considered frames. One of the reasons I shoot film and manual is that is really places restrictions on you and forces you to take it easy and think.

Thinking about photography is a lifestyle. All day, every moment, I’m looking and thinking about the light and composition, all day, it’s consuming and I love it.

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What I have tried to do is to single out subjects whilst still including them in the environment to have a bit of context to the candid portrait. For me this allows a story to be made by the viewer more easily, drawing on keys in the surrounds and subject to construct a solid story line for the main characters. Shooting much more on film than digital lately. Honing my skills and getting more comfortable with a number of cameras, I don’t think the camera has much of an effect on a final image, I just like the feeling.

www.michaeljolliffe.com

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The Dolls of Newtown, Sydney.

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www.michaeljolliffe.com

I had an interesting morning today street shooting in Newtown, Sydney. Made a huge effort to engage more and had a lot of fun with it.
First up I helped a man use the ticket machine at the train station and chatted about his travels as he was on his way to the airport. I did not get his portrait but the interaction put me in the right headspace to start the day.
Secondly at my destination I was walking down a side street to circle around the block and walked by a lady trying to use a screwdriver to fix a loose fence pale in place so I offered to help. I failed to convert this interaction into a portrait but I did not help solely for a photograph anyway, it made me feel good to help people.
My third interaction was a rough looking guy that walked straight up to me and started posing and rapping! I got in a shot (not the best) but I chatted to him briefly, he said his name was “right now” and ran off to meet his friend that crossed the road.
For the fourth, I discovered a small vintage camera store and was chatting to the owner about the resurgence of film and purchased some rolls of portra 400 whilst eying off the vintage cameras and the mamiya rb67 in particular. No photo, but I did get a window shot of the leica’s.
My fifth was whilst leaving a sidewalk market, I noticed an elderly lady dropped one of her earring’s onto the pavement. I picked it up and gave it back to her, she had no idea that she had dropped it and thanked me as we began to cross the street.
My sixth and last interaction was two men that were sitting amongst a bicycle rack enjoying a few bottles of beer. I snapped a photo first and obviously whilst waving then approached as I could sense they both were wondering if I was crazy! They were really friendly and were enjoying the midday sun and a catch up and I explained that I thought they looked like great subjects sitting amongst all the bikes having a good chat. Wished each other a good day and I headed home.
I was shooting candidly in between but the few conversions to street portrait really boosted my confidence and made the day a lot more memorable. I will post more shots in the future when I develop the film and edit. I was switching between the x100s and r2m. Definitely slowed down and chose far less shots with film. ´╗┐ – michaeljolliffe.com

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I look at creating photographs that are slightly different than what we see in the real world but are still easily identifiable and relatable. With the use of angles to black and white and over saturated colour, composition, hopefully I make a representation that is not just documentary but different enough from the real world that the average person could see it as being art. That is my surreal intention.

www.michaeljolliffe.com

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I have been accepted into The Arcanum!
If you don’t know what The Arcanum is, it is a master and apprentice, online mentoring program for creative arts. I was lucky to be accepted by Valerie Jardin into her cohort on street photography. Wish me luck as I work on improving my street photography and levelling up!

www.michaeljolliffe.com

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