Thread: The Street
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Old 05-18-2018   #24
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Originally Posted by pluton View Post
It's documentary photography. Unless it's been content-manipulated, in which case it's illustration or photo art or something other than documentary..
Right, in theory. However, for many of my "documentary" photos I take "on the street" I ask subjects if I can take the photo first. This will be seen as content manipulated and therefore not documentary any more, right? Which label is left for it then?
Personally I find the reactions, the stance or even pose subjects take, after being asked by this foreign photographer, as being very revealing and showing and certainly documentary, in it's own right, if you will.

E.g. look at these young school girls in Surakarta, Indonesia. As document it profits from some explanation. In Indonesia, as compared to years ago, many more women are covering hair, specially young women, school girls all seem to use hijabs nowadays. When I asked to take the photo one could see, or is it rather my interpretation (?), that they had been pleased and stayed relaxed but at the same time had been challenged. Look at the relaxed body language, legs and feet, but when I lifted my camera something else kicked in, an education, not to say "indoctrination", that reminded them that as good girls they should cover their faces.

It could be labelled "travel photography" and it's a bit of that. Since I have been frequenting most places I take photos in, since many years, mostly speak some of the local language asf. there often must be and will be differences to what generally is considered "travel" photography. It was prior experience of the place, if I may call so, my "historic" interest had made me take this photo. This commonly is little expected from "travel photography". For me it's mostly "documentary", even a bit "street", but for "photography" it's neither.

by andreas, on Flickr, CV Heliar f4.5/15mm, Sony NEX5n, Java, Indonesia 2018

I respect what has historically grown into "street photography", what is defined as "documentary photography". However, the exclusiveness of labelling may be helpful for marketing but I rather find it limiting and harmful to photography.
my photos on flickr: :
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