Soho Street Photography Soho Street Photography

Soho Street Photography

As you may have read, on the shortest weekend of the year, I took part in an all night shoot around London, taking photos of the sunset and waiting until the sunrise to capture that as well. In-between the two events, I went up to Soho to take some photographs of the night-life.

For those of you that don't know, Soho is London's main party area, its also notoriously seedy in places and famously fabulous in others. After fuelling up on a beer or two, at the hipster-tastic basement bar Hideout (you've probably never heard of it....), we headed out to the streets. Street photography is an interesting thing, with a DSLR you are pretty obviously not part of the drinking and partying crowd and that can cause stares at best and aggression is always possible. Wandering around with one other person helps, it makes it less formal so you don't seem like a focused journalist, but it is still a small enough group that you don't appear to be a pack of paparazzi or or perverts.

There was a definite sense of hostility as we moved into some of the seedier areas, people were less keen being caught on camera standing outside legitimate massage parlours and so we moved on, but in the main bar areas people largely ignored us.

The trick to Street Photography, and why I like it, is honesty, capturing someone who is not posing for the camera, who being themselves. I got some really interesting images of people going about their evening, images that hint of a story that I am not privy to, but can guess a little of....

What was interesting about this shoot is I was back using the 105mm Macro lens in a totally non-macro shoot.As it is a fast lens, and with a adjusted focal length of about 136mm it is a good semi zoomed lens for taking 3/4 length shots of people from far enough away that you are not in their faces. The only issue with it is the slow focusing time if you've got outside its expected range, it doesn't track well because its built to deal with very small changes very accurately. It is however a good substitute for having a dedicated darkness lense. My 24-105mm might be an amazing walkabout lens, but even with the IS an f4 is slow at night.....