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With the seasons soon to be changing, there will be no shortage of inspiration for aspiring or professional street fashion photographers. New styles and hues are soon to hit the streets.

“Street style is considered to have emerged not from studios and catwalks, but from grassroots streetwear, often seen in major urban cities.  Street style is where many fashion firsts are seen and we want to inspire people to get out; hit the streets, music festivals, outdoor food markets, lifestyle events and other places where people go to see and be seen,” says Abri Kriegler, product manager at Canon SA.

Canon has tapped into the knowledge and experience of fashion photographer and Canon ambassador, Javier Cortés, to offer a few tips for getting the best results when shooting street style. Spaniard Cortés is a renowned portrait and fashion photographer and has shot for Vogue and Esquire amongst others. Cortés’ simple tips are for beginners and enthusiasts alike.

  1. Pick the time of day wisely. Shoot in the early morning or late afternoon when the light is softer and the colours are more vibrant. At midday, when the light is harsher, play around with diffusers.
  2. As a beginner, don’t attempt risky shots when you start. Play safe with the camera settings for both the aperture and shutter speed. A good shot can easily be ruined because it’s out-of-focus or if there is unintentional blurring. Instead, experiment with aperture and shutter speed before the shoot, as this will be useful when you only have a few minutes to shoot.
  3. If you see something worth capturing, don’t waste time and shoot it immediately! Just ensure you ask the person’s permission to use it afterwards.
  4. If you aren’t happy with the way your model is posing, don’t hesitate to address this early on and try other options, no matter how ridiculous it may seem. On some occasions, the clothes will help dictate the pose.  An extra item or accessory may also be the thing which makes the photo complete.  Photos also come out better the more time you spend with your model.
  5. Take advantage of the light around you, even at night.  Try not to complicate the photo set up too much and keep things simple.  By thinking this way, you can come up with creative methods that have surprising results; the backlights of a van, the light of a mobile phone, or even the florescent lights in a bus stop among other things can deliver surprising results.
  6. It’s important to create a story behind the image.  Whether it be a fashion editorial or a street photo, it’s important to look at every single detail of the model and the clothes. Even small movements or hand gestures can make the photo special.
  7. Lie down on the floor if you have to. When shooting at a low angle, you can get very interesting perspectives. This angle can sometimes be more flattering whilst really empowering the subject.
  8. Look for interesting and unusual spaces or backgrounds for your backdrops. Keep in mind that the background usually stands out the most, second only to the model.
  9. Use black and white when you want the viewer to focus on a specific part of the model’s face without any distractions
  10. Mobile phones are convenient to take photos, however I would recommend using a camera versus a smartphone.  Use light equipment, which allows you to do your work comfortably and flexibly so you can find the best angle or background. It’s also very useful to have the ability to transfer your photos to your smartphone wirelessly, which is a great benefit of the Canon EOS M50.

A long-time Canon user, Cortés’ first camera was a Canon AE-1, a popular SLR model that was manufactured between 1976 and 1984. Lately, he has been trying out Canon’s latest mirrorless camera, the EOS M50.

He says: “I love that it is lightweight and the quality of the images it takes is close to the professional cameras.  I’m used to using large cameras and when comparing the photos they produce with the EOS M50, I’m quite surprised and impressed by the quality! Everything about the camera is amazing, including the lenses, particularly the EF-M 22mm f2.”

Kriegler describes the EOS M50 as a modern classic that is packed with innovative technology.

“You can shoot superb 4K movies with a DSLR sized sensor and DIGIC 8 processor. It is sleek and lightweight and boasts exceptional low light and depth of field performance. You can also quickly connect and transfer images to smart devices with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and auto image sync and transfer. It really is becoming the go-to camera for street fashion photographers,” says Kriegler, who encourages local photographers keen to get clicking on the streets this spring to engage with Canon SA on Facebook and keep up with the latest news with its Click magazine on You Tube. Click magazine has information on all of the latest Canon releases as well as tutorials, case studies and tips.

There is also a new platform to help promote local wedding photographers and other photographic services, https://weddingphotographersforum.co.za. On the platform, visitors, such as nearly-weds, can browse photographers through genre, style, situation, location and price. They can then contact photographers directly or through the site. Photographers registered on the site have access to some great features, such as the ability to create a branded profile for their business, participate in a closed forum as well as buy and sell gear in the “marketplace”.

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