Street Photography: Capture the Life of Your City | Trashhand | Skillshare

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Street Photography: Capture the Life of Your City

teacher avatar Trashhand, Cityscape Photographer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Project Assignment


    • 3.

      Previous Work: Street Portraits


    • 4.

      Previous Work: Look Ups


    • 5.

      Previous Work: Motion


    • 6.

      Previous Work: Night Shots


    • 7.

      Street Portraits


    • 8.

      Look Ups


    • 9.

      Capturing Motion


    • 10.

      Shooting at Night


    • 11.

      Editing: Street Portraits


    • 12.

      Editing: Look Ups


    • 13.

      Editing: Motion


    • 14.

      Editing: Night Shots


    • 15.

      Final Selections


    • 16.

      Learn More with trashhand


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About This Class

In collaboration with VSCO, join trashhand, one of Skillshare's most popular photography teachers, as he shares insight on some of his favorite street photography techniques. While weaving through the streets of his native city Chicago trashhand covers four main topics as they relate to street photography: capturing authentic candids, utilizing blur to convey motion, finding compelling angles for "look-up" shots, and finally trying these techniques at night.    

trashhand has been able to translate his love for photography into a promising career, and practicing shots like these on a daily basis has played a pivotal role. Whether you are looking to improve your personal photography or better position yourself for commissioned gigs with brands, this class will set you on the right path to fulfilling your photography goals.

Meet Your Teacher

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Cityscape Photographer


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1. Introduction: My name's trashhand, I'm a Chicago-based photographer. In this class, we're going to be talking about street photography, life of the city. I knew early on that what I wanted to do was focus on street photography and cityscape photography, and I've made it known to the brands that are interested in me that this is my specialty, this is my skill. I prepare myself just by doing this everyday. I wake up before sunrise every morning, when no one's around and I'm walking those streets. It's still like it's really personal, I get to have that moment alone with the city, really have that freedom. When I'm out shooting street photography, there's really four main shots that I always have in my head. I have a lookup, street portrait, a motion blur type of shot whether I'm capturing a moving objects, something still, or a moving objects as motion but the environment around it is completely still. For night photography, I'm shooting it, which is a completely different animal on it's own. I think focusing on these four things and being able going back and forth between these settings, you can quickly become a master in street photography. I think my skills as a street photographer allow me to shoot anywhere. As long as there's people around and streets to walk on, I can shoot it. 2. Project Assignment: So, this is a project based class where we want you to go out and actually capture a content from a shot list that we provide you. I've been fortunate enough to work with brands and magazines, just shoot campaign for them. Typically, these are the type of photos they're looking for. Your shot list consists of four shots: street portrait, lookup, motion blur, night photography. Some things that I'll try to avoid when I'm out shooting street photography are things that are very touristy, things that are fake. So, I try not to shoot big brands stores, or locations, or streets that have nothing but stores on them where people are carrying shopping bags. I'm looking for places that are very, once again, are just authentic to that city. So, once you have your four shots, I want you guys a long on a skill share and upload your class project. I really want to see these sets of four. I want to see it in order, from street portrait to look up, from motion blur to a nice photography. I want you guys to give each other feedback and really show case to each other what your city is all about, the life of your city. Along with you guys, it's time for me to go capture my project. 3. Previous Work: Street Portraits: So, this is a street portrait I took in Chicago on LaSalle Avenue. I was working on a Nike project, actually. The same way she's walking, I had about six runners running across in between lights changing. She was on the end of that walk when my runners had already passed, but I had been standing there for probably a good 30 to 45 minutes. So, this is another classic example of just holding my ground, becoming part of the location where she wasn't even noticing that I was there. I think my favorite thing about this shot is her stride. I know you can get photos like this all the time. But the way she's walking, to me, it's a real hustle, like she's got somewhere to go, and it just really translates in the photo. I think that the other thing that I love about it is that her head falls right underneath the clock on the Chicago Board of Trade Building. I think that's just a small little detail that I love, along with just the image being completely full. There's no tops of the building, and you really get this vanishing point leading all the way to the Chicago Board of Trade. I shot this street portrait in Istanbul. I was actually shooting the location itself. This is a famous location in Istanbul in a neighborhood called Balat. Just these rows of painted houses, it's famous there. So, I was taking photos of that and I saw this old man walking up, and I just thought it was really intriguing. One, he just looked like somebody from Turkey. Another thing that I really liked about it is that he had this cane and a really slow walk, and he was just walking up this big hill, and you could tell it was going to take him a long time and that he was taking his time. I just felt it was just a classic beautiful moment. You can tell he walks this hill every day but it doesn't bother him at all. This was taken in Istanbul as well. I love this shot. I felt like she actually went and got a second bag after I was beginning to take her photo the first time, and I felt like she actually went and got a second bag just so I could grab her photo. But I loved everything about her. I loved the way her shirt went into her hands, I always thought that was interesting when I was taking her photo. But I also loved the way her scarf around her head pops against the black on her body. The location itself is gorgeous, with all those birds, the texture on the floor from the food. It's just a really authentic photo to Istanbul and Turkey. So, this was taken in India in just a small alley. I was walking around, taking photos, and it's amazing how open they were to having their photo taken. I felt like they know, just as a culture, how vibrant, authentic, and real their lifestyle is, and they're really comfortable with it. So, I think naturally they're just comfortable with photographers walking around and taking their photo, but that doesn't mean that they're not going to look. I've gotten a ton of looks, and even though they're looking pretty stale and mean-mugging, they're quite content and just normal looking, just giving me a strong stare to the camera. I think that is better than a smile. I think it shows that they're still themself, even though I'm taking that photo, that they didn't change anything for me. As a photographer, I can really appreciate that. This might look like a still moment, but there was probably ten people waiting just to pass by me to get into this little tight area where there's already tons of people. I was definitely blocking the way, but I was blocking the way so no one would get in front of my shot. I was quick. It didn't take me long, but in India, everything is so quick. There's people everywhere, and at this moment, I had to be quick. Another thing that I like about India and about this shot is that I shot this with a 50. I usually always walk around with a 24. Whether I'm shooting lookups, portraits, motion shots, I'm usually always rocking with a 24 as my base shot. If I see it in a different way or I know it's going to work in a different way, I'll change lenses. But when I was in India, I stayed with a 50 the entire time. Sometimes, I would put a 24 on, but I would immediately change back to a 50. I wasn't able to isolate the subjects as well, especially when shooting street portraits. There was so much going on that when I was shooting wide, I wasn't able to get a clear enough depth of field to really isolate someone, so the shots were always coming out extremely busy. But with a 50 and getting really wide open with it, getting really tight, I was able to isolate a lot better. 4. Previous Work: Look Ups: So, the next shot we're going to talk about on our shot list is the Look Up, which I've been asked by a couple of brands to get for them on assignment. It's amazing like, I never call the Look Up a look up. To me that was like my shot when I started. That's all I wanted to do, it was like shoot Look Ups. To me that's like a trash and shot. I'm constantly looking up, even when I'm not shooting. Walking down the street, driving my car from downtown, or anywhere near some architecture, I'm definitely looking up. I think the best part about a Look Up tool is that, all I really need is an iPhone to get it. I think the iPhone is perfect for Look Up shots because, it's capturing all this detail without having to worry about your aperture, or anything like that. When you're capturing Look Ups you want to capture as much detail as possible. You want your depth of field to be as big as possible, because you want to capture all the detail from the sky to the buildings. Architecture that goes with that, so with an iPhone it does that automatically. So, for Look Ups it's perfect. When shooting Look Ups, I'm looking for mainly three things; I'm worried about sky, scale, and the detail of the actual building. So, this is the shot I took for Chicago mag that was featured in one of their magazines. It's a beautiful Look Up. You can see that I'm using the glass to reflect the architecture to increase the detail. One of the reasons I love this shot is because, outside of the glass on the exterior of the building, there's so much architecture that's happening. There's so much line work, there's this beautiful vanishing point that almost looks like it's forward but it's actually pointed directly up, and I love that. That pattern continues as it's being reflected on the glass. So, there's actually like twice as much happening. Then if that was just brick and no reflection was happening, you get all this extra detail. I think the main challenge for this shot was just getting all the line work right. I think another thing was just trying to focus on what was going to be my priority of lining the shot up. If you can see these two middle lines, they are not actually in the very middle of the shot. But if I used that as a middle, I wouldn't have been able to have the varnishing point actually centered. So, I made a sacrifice and I wanted the varnishing point more centered, than those two lines leading into it. The shot was taken in San Francisco downtown. I love this shot. I took this with actually my 14 millimeter super wide, and I had my camera basically leaning on the building. I think I had it pointing up a little bit, but I still wanted my camera as close to the surface as possible. So, I actually had the base of it leaning on the building, but just tilted a bit up so I could capture more of the buildings that were behind me and surrounding this one. If you notice because I was so close, I was actually able to get a greater reflection. It's one of my favorite Look Up shots just because of the cloud formations. I really love the sky, I really love the feeling I get from it. I love that some of the clouds feel so white, but with the edit, if you look at the top left corner, the sky seems as black as night, the clouds are as bright as day, and I love the buildings that are around it. There's a turn of negative space, but the clouds really fill it in to a point where it doesn't feel empty. It's still a very full shot. Also, you can see a bit of the clouds reflections in the Sears Tower to the left, also known as Willis Tower, but I don't call it that. It is an overall beautiful image. But I shot this out of the moonroof of my car. I just stopped in the middle of traffic. I wasn't there for long and adjust my settings for a quick second but, I just shot this through the moonroof of my vehicle. 5. Previous Work: Motion: Now, the next shot we're going to be talking about on your shot list is motion blur. I think when you work with brands that are all about movement, whether it's cars or running, you really have to be able to portray speed, portray movement, and have that be the main element in the shot. There's two ways that I like to utilize blur. One is where I have the moving object appear as they are moving, as a motion, or where I capture that moving object as a still subject but the environment around it is blurry. Either way, when I'm capturing blur, I do have a slow shutter speed. One is just going to be slower than the other. When I'm trying to capture the environment still and the subject that's moving as a motion, I'm trying to have my camera somewhere that has a base where I can keep it still and leveled. So, as the environment stays still, my camera can as well, while the subject is moving, capturing that motion. With a slow shutter speed still keeping a level exposure, I'll be able to capture that movement. Whereas where I'm capturing the object moving as a still and the environment around it as a blur, I'm panning along with the object as it moves with a slow shutter speed, where I can capture that blur as I pan along with the subject. When I capture my subject as a motion blur, I like to have them a good distance away from me, as I find it easier to capture that blur when they are a bit further away. If they were closer, you have to pan a lot quicker. It becomes a lot more difficult to actually grab that focus and grab that blur. Whereas when they're farther, it's a lot easier, and you can have more time to pan with them because they're a farther distance away from you. Obviously, a motion blur shot of the car still with the environment around it blurry. You can obviously read that it says "Chicago Police" on the car. It's definitely readable. One thing that I do like is that the front of the car is actually blurry. The entire vehicle isn't in complete focus, and I don't think that hinders the image at all. I think it shows how fast this car was actually moving. As long as you can still read what it says, I think you successfully captured the shot. You can't see what it says behind you. It's definitely unreadable on the building behind it. I love that I was able to capture the light, the blue light and the rush that this cop was feeling. So this is a shot I did for this brand called Dope Boy Magic based out of Chicago, also known as DBM. In this shot, you have the subject still, but the moving object as a blur. You can see that the background, the train, is obviously moving. Here, I was actually freehand. I was using my leg. I was using my leg to steady my arm, to keep my shot as still as possible. I was towards the beginning of the train platform, so this train was passing me by at its quickest pace versus if it was towards the end, when it was coming to its stop. I had the model stay as still as possible as he could be. I have actually him holding his jacket in so it doesn't flail around a lot, so it actually stays as clear as possible as the train passes by him. One thing that I really like about this photo is you can actually see the American flag on the right being dragged along with the motion. You can see where I actually began the shot where the flag is on the left and see it passing by. 6. Previous Work: Night Shots: The last show on your show list is nice photography, and how you can adjust to get the three previous lessons at night. Nice photography is essential to be able to work with brands. It really shows your skill in photography, your knowledge of lighting, and how you're able to use and manipulate it. I think at night, it's a completely different atmosphere. I think you'll see a completely different crowd. I think you'll see people dressed completely different, acting completely different. You'll see the lights come on and, I think that offers a whole new world of content for you to be able to capture. Nice photography is all about lighting. So, when I'm shooting a night, I'm worried about my shutter speed, and my ISO. I'm trying to keep a great balance in between that without getting much shutter speed too low, and my ISO too high. So, when my ISO is too high, I'm going to get some noisy images. When my shutter speed to low, and me moving around that quick, I'm going to get some blurry shots which I don't want. So, this is a nice shot I took in New York City. I took in the LE- lower east side. I was just walking and taking photos by myself in New York City and I hadn't made it right and I started walking down the street, and as I got midway I noticed it. I noticed the car in the foreground, and the light that was coming from there, and I just waited about two minutes until I've really finally had some subject matter that I had light, and I found it was interesting. As for my artificial light, I was using the light that was coming from this grocery store. I thought it was pretty amazing. Everything around it, on the rest of the street seemed close, and the lights off but this grocery store was really bright. Another thing that I really like about it, is the way that that light and the store was reflecting on the hood of the car in the foreground. I thought that was really interesting. The other thing that I liked was the two subjects. The one that was in the store and one that was actually out of the store walking past. I just find both of them interesting. When you see this shot, you can now see that the car in front of me was blurry, because of the low light. I have to compensate for it. So not only do I have a low shutter speed, and the high ISO, but I also have a low aperture, that depth feel was causing a blur in the foreground. This is classic Chicago and night to me. This is an apartment building in Chicago. A common look to Chicago apartment buildings symmetrical, nice courtyard, a gate in the front that's obviously blurry once again talking about my low aperture giving you that foreground blurry. I'm focusing on the building in the background. Obviously, I also line that up and you see that middle spike is coming straight through into the middle of the path. One thing that I like about this is that there's not much light happening that's lighting up the courtyard. It's actually giving it a bit of an eerie vibe. One thing that I added to this to actually manipulate the eye in thinking that it was brighter, was that I created a vignette around the image, making the corners darker to bring out the light in the middle of the image without actually brightening increasing the exposure of the image. 7. Street Portraits: We are on the South Street. We're going to be walking up and down. It's one of my favorite places to walk on during sunrise. It's just a lot of traffic. Most people here are still groggy just from the early morning before they had their coffee so, you can get away taking some street portraits of them, which is my favorite time. When you walk more towards Jackson, on the south, you get towards more of the financial area, a lot more banks, so you get a lot more people in suits. If you're looking for that, which I usually am just to get that kind of eerie business vibe, with some of the Roman architecture for the banks and stuff like that. I really want to use as much architecture as possible, and then use my subject to compliment all of that and help compose a shot to tell a story. Here's actually something I love. So, I love this architecture right here. I love these lines that are happening, and the way it just descends. So, I'm going to probably frame my shot like this. But this is something where I could just stand here, hold my composition, and as people come, I can just begin to take portraits. I can just almost stack up my portraits if I wanted. The guy with the briefcase, wearing a suit, long trench coat, exactly what I was looking for, telling a story. We got character. Being a cityscape photographer, I'm just drawn to the city life, and everything that comes with it, and those type vibes, and that type of lifestyle. So, I think being downtown, being in the financial district, it just makes sense. You expect that. You don't expect to see just somebody with jeans. I feel like it doesn't really fit. So, if you can put the right subject in the right setting, as it actually happens, and take a photo of that, I think it just comes off very powerful. Put it right, like it's just a second act for your photo. At that point, I feel like it becomes timeless. You know what I mean? Let's get moving. Nothing much laid out, so we're going to be as still as possible. There you go.That was a tight one. We got to frame one of my shot, stay there for a moment, really hold it in my composition. That's how I was able to get him perfectly right in front of that door. Dude with the face mask look crazy. All right, I'd say let's walk across the street and then do the same thing walking back. I think that's the beautiful thing about shooting while with a 35. Being with a 24 is that you get to really compose your shots. You get a lot more room to fill in. You get a lot more to work with. So I just feel like every time I'm shooting portraits, or even shooting hook ups or anything on the street, I'm always at the edge of the sidewalk just so you have as much sidewalk room to work with when you're trying to compose your shots. Just waiting for the right person to come in my frame. I think this lady. I like that lady. Let's see what this guy looks like. Let's keep moving. I think, the main thing that I try to do when I'm out here shooting and trying to get these shots with these portraits is that, I really try to compose my shots first. I see how I want to capture my shot, and let really the subjects stroll in to the shot and just capture that. So, I already know how good my shot has the potential to be. I'm already happy with it, so once I have it, I can stand still and almost blend in to what's happening around me. So no one actually begin to notice me at that point, which allows me to even be able to get more shots, and get shots unrecognized to get more of that candid shot without them knowing I'm taking their photo. Although, I like this complete surface. Yes, so I'm happy with that. You see, it's just like this one from floor to ceiling, this one clean surface, and you just get to isolate your subject, and it just stand out so much. For me, I'm even like a real symmetrical photographer. I love shooting symmetry. I love my shots to be clean, to all be lined out with the rule of thirds. I'm not a photographer to just shoot aimlessly. I want my shots to be composed even though they are candid and they are off the cuff, I still want to have a composed shot. So this one, just waiting for our subject to come in. I know my composition. I really like this statue, and I think I'm going to try to compose something here. So, I can just wait for my subject to come in. I want to take this guy on right. Yes, we got him. I think, one main thing to take away though is that you have every right to be out here taking photos. You have every right to be taking photos of these people, portraits of anyone there who are walking the streets. If they're out in public, you have the right to take their photo. Crazy person could come up to you and start threatening you. You might definitely want to delete that. There's still I could fix, I want to. Let's take another photo. I want to try to get this guy smoking right here. I want him to exhale. I like the architecture, I like the vanishing point. I like the subject, so a guy in a suit. I like the grey hair. I like the vibe, it's just him reading that newspaper. You tell it's like something he does every day. It was so authentic to him. I think that's also really a key factor when students shoot portraits. You want to see something that's really authentic. People feel authentic. They know it. You can't hide it. You can't fake it, I should say. 8. Look Ups: Come on, it's one of the most epic lookups in Chicago. So tight. The things that I'm looking for when shooting lookups is trying to capture a negative space, also like height, scale, symmetry, details, maybe reflections into the glass, the brick, and even using those as composition. I think sometimes it's really interesting putting something that's really old school with brick next to something that's modern and new age, and that's something about steel and glass. I look for all those things when I'm doing a lookup. Once again, just using the building's lines. Anyway, I can't, since you really just compose my shots. You wanted to see things in a different way as much as possible. Obviously, you want to use the rule of thirds and that type of things for your composition, but don't be afraid to explore, try new things, try new angles, try to line them up in weird ways, and just take the photo and see how it works out in everything else that you try. It's probably one of my favorite lookups in Chicago. This is the Chase building. The architecture of this building is just so amazing. You can just see it, it just slants up like that. I take everyone here who comes new in town. This is a lookup. Whenever you look up, it's just amazing. It's definitely one of my favorite intersections. Using three of my favorite lenses that I always have in my bag, a 50, 24, and a 14, I'm going to show you guys a different perspective you can capture using those lenses for a lookup. On an order versus my 50, 24. So, with the 50, I was only capturing really close to the top of the building. Once I put my 24 on, I'm capturing almost twice as much information. So, this 14. You can see the difference in the glass between the 24 and the 14. The 14 is really round versus the 24. With the 14, I'm not only able to capture these main buildings but I'm actually able to capture the buildings all around it, creating a more fuller lookup, but also adding a ton of scale to these buildings. When I'm first shooting, I'm looking for the overall size and scale of these buildings. I want them to feel tall in the photos. Then I'm also thinking about the detail of the building, the lines. If you notice, this building has a bunch of lines, but this actual particular one right here actually matches up with the middle of the building across from it. So, you get this really clean symmetrical photo when you're doing a lookup. What's nice about alleys is that usually both buildings are blocking the sun, so you get this even light no matter what. So, then a great point to make is that I don't need a fast shutter speed to shoot lookups. So I can really lower it, keep a steady hand and really crease my aperture to capture as much depth of field as possible. I think the beautiful thing about lookups is that you really get to take your time and line up your shot. The buildings aren't moving. It's a still subject. You can just get your exposure right, get your angles right, your scale, your perspective, and line up your corners. I think one of the easiest lookups is just the corner of a building, especially a square building because it just allows you for this even symmetrical shot. It's classic, easy, but provoking at the same time. It is a great way to show scale. This is just a beautiful lookup. Symmetrical, really unique, perfect architecture, great detail, leading lines that take you all the way to the top. The scale is massive. They got buildings around. You can either isolate the building by itself or add other buildings in to add more negative space. I think the really cool thing about lookup too is that you can shoot the same lookup so many different ways to tell a different story. You can shoot it on a bright blue day, and you get this warm weather type feeling, or are you going to shoot it when it's foggy, and the top of the building is disappearing into the sky, and you have this moody photo. Your shooting when it's raining or snowing. You're always going to get this different type of vibe and different type of feel to it, which is awesome. 9. Capturing Motion: So, one of the train platforms in Chicago, I'm trying to capture a moving blur shot as one of my shots from my shot list. Here, I'm going to try to capture the train as a motion and the environment around it still, but also the train has a still and clear shot, but the environment, blurry. Right now I'm using this hand rail to help keep my shot as steady as possible. When the train actually comes, it does move around. But I actually don't have a shutter that's that long, so I should be fine. I'm playing with my settings. I don't have a 30-second exposure. It's not a nighttime shot, and I still want some definition from the train. If my shutter's too long, the motion of blur is going to be way too smooth. Even though I want it to be smooth, I still want some definition to show that it is a train. You'll actually see right here, complete blur of the train as it passed, but the environment perfectly still, thanks to that handrail. Well, I actually like that last clip where you can see the end of the trail and the lights that came with it. I'm trying to capture subject as a still object. Once it begins to come close to me, I'm already locking on to the front of it, and I'm holding that focus, the same focus as I'm panning all the way across from right to left or left or right. For a one second, you and the subject are aligned to capture that still moment while everything else is blurry. The front of the CTA is in still, but even the back of the CTA and everything around it is blurry. Where I even followed it along, you can see, the front is clear, the entire background is blurry. I just found that capturing a motion blur with the subjects closer to the camera, I just can't achieve the same result. I think it's a lot harder in my personal opinion. So we're underground, trying to capture a motion blur shot of a train. I don't really have anything to use as a base like a handrail or a tripod. So, I just where I'm going to be when the train is passing me by as it's fastest, so I'm going to have to have that slow of a shutter speed, so I can be handheld, really using my leg as a base to get the shot. So here, I got the train passing me by. I know that I'm at the end of this platform, so I know that the train is going to pass me by at its quickest pace as it arrives. I'm actually going to be using the floor. You can see that there is a small waterpool happening here. So I want to put my camera on the floor, use the floor as my base to keep my camera still and get some motion blur shots of this train where the cool reflection is happening as well. So there's a monstrous motion blur happening. I'm really liking this yellow line. But I just kept firing and firing until I found one that I liked. You should see the front of the train right here. Some nice light trails happening. I'm focusing on the environment, just focusing on the environment, so I can keep that still, not focusing on the train because going to be blurry. I just take as many shots as I can. 10. Shooting at Night: So, we're here to discuss how to utilize artificial light for street photography. Using the three lessons prior to this one, I want you to be able to capture a photo that tells a story using artificial light, whether that be a street portrait, a look-up, or even capturing a moving object. I love this location. It's very authentic to Chicago. It's the L. You can get all the lines that take you where you need to go. But I'm using artificial light from this lamp to get a clear good shot of my subjects walking up as they're rushing to get home. Even here, I'm not looking for a big crowd to come through. I'm looking more for that one individual that just tells a story, that feels a certain way, and that brings off a certain vibe. That's my type. So, the way a guy was walking across the street, but if you see him, you're going to see that even his upper body is in focus, but his feet are blurry, and that's just because of the low shutter speed at night. It's reacting quick. I'm still having a steady hand, but at the end of the day, they're moving. It's hard. I find doing the motion and blur shots at night a little more interesting because the artificial lights in the background give them more of a texture compared to doing it more during the daytime. If I'm on the red light, I'm definitely trying to shoot cars from walking. I'm shooting portraits. Take advantage of my time that way. So, I actually really like this has a look up. There's so much light also coming from this lamppost, and I'm using actually that light source without leaving it being in the photo. There's not much light at all happening above there. Also light is happening right below it, right before it gets to the actual wall and goes up. Just adjusting my settings to compensate for the extremely low light that's happening. I'm just raising my eyes. So, to do that is to allow more light to come in and push my camera harder. Things like we went over before when doing look ups, I want to worry about the scale, want to worry about the sky, and I also want to worry about the buildings details and its lines, and just really showcasing all of that. I missed it. It was too dark. Too dark, I missed it. I missed this plane that was flying above the buildings in between them. It was too dark. I couldn't focus quick enough to capture it. 11. Editing: Street Portraits: So, even after I've gone through and picked my selects, when doing street portraits I tend to pick a couple of selects that are close to each other. So, in the end I have a couple options to choose from before I pick my final select. In this shot in example, you can see these two are just taking immediately right after each other. So, when I go to pick it, I can actually see full-screen, everything that's happening and what I like and dislike about it, so I can pick my font select. For this shot in particular, compare this is the first, this is the second. I like the second a lot more compared to the first. For me, he just fits into this architecture a lot more, filling in this space a lot more neatly compared to the first one. Whereas backstep is almost at the edge of this line, versus him being completely in the center of it. So, I'm going to go ahead and start working on this. If you notice on the right here, there's a bit of an opening from the window, so I'm just going to go ahead and crop a little in. Usually, I try not to work with the rule of thirds, but for this shot, I actually want the bottom of the ground a little as possible versus the top. I just want to create a tall background and the same type of floor. Once again, when I was shooting it, the thing that attracted me the most about this photo, was that the floor and the background had the same texture. So, my favorite presets to use in light room are the VSCO presets. They have six different packs now. These go film O1 all the way through O6. I'd have to admit O2 and O5 have some of my favorite presets. Those are the packs that I keep going back to, but I still use presets from O1, O2, O3, O4, you know O6. So, when I begin editing, I always end up doing the same thing. I do the same thing because this is my style. This is the way I see. This is the way I feel like my photos should come out. This is a representation of my eye, my brand, my photos as a whole and my portfolio. So, I ended up picking the same certain things and then tweaking it for the photo there. While I'm going through the edit. I'm just trying to highlight as much detail as possible, but also have him stand out as much as possible. I've added some clarity to really add some definition to the shot, add some definition to him, to really bring him out as that subject in this photo. I also like how dark he is in his attire compared to his background and surroundings. I might actually increase the shadows a little bit, to bring some detail from his clothing, from the wrinkles in his jacket, and even the wrinkles in his pants. Along with making sure that your crop is right, you always want to straighten your photos. Just double-checking and triple checking that my lines are straight, and that this photo is clean. The filter I'm using right now for this photo is a Fuji Superia 1600 plus in the film O2 pack of VSCOs. Don't forget to use the presets that go along with your brand of camera. Right now, I shot this with a Canon camera so I'm using the Canon presets under VSCO film O2. Usually, what I like to do after I have the photo edited in my default style, and I think it's closest to my vision, I like to actually double-click, and do a create virtual copy. It's a complete duplicate of the original file, and once I have that, I like to actually play around with other filters, and see what I have. One thing I'd like to do is, put down the navigator, so I can see the image as a little square. So, once I go through these filters, I actually get a preview of what's happening from each VSCO filter. So, once I like a type of filter, I go ahead, select it and begin doing work. I really like the blue in this, and not only how the blue effects the background, but him as a whole. So, I'm going to increase my clarity, bring some shadows up, lower my highlights to make sure that my white's aren't blown out, and I'm still capturing as much detail as possible. Increase my sharpening a little bit. Make sure my profile correction's on. I don't want to vignette, because I don't want my corners dark and I want this to be an even image all the way around. I want my corners just as bright as the rest of the image. Really just making that subject pop up that much more. One thing that I might do is actually raise this bottom tone curve point to help flatten the blacks just a little bit as I like to do that in my photos. So, here a default style, and also a new style that I like, just so I can go back and forth and pick a favorite of mine later on. Here's another street portrait shot that I really liked. This is one of my selects from it. This location, I stayed out for actually a couple of minutes, about two or three. I waited for my subjects to come into frame. I sat here, held my ground, and just waited for them. I blended in, so they didn't even notice. So, when I'm picking through selects, from all the shots that I took, I have three favorites. You can see as I go back and forth. Same shot, three different people, who have the same exact stance as they're walking past me. I can just pick whichever one that I like, and I feel like fits the location the most. I like this guy the best. I feel like with his jacket and overall vibe, it's just really clean. Now that I have an edit that I like using one of the VSCO film presets, I'm just going to copy it, the adjustments. So, when I have the next photo that I like, I can just paste it, and then adjust towards. So, I want to make sure that my image is highlighted in the navigator, and just begin to go through these filters, and pick through which one I like. I chose this filter because I really like how soft and flat the image is overall. I think it just cleans up the image and cleans up the blacks a bit. I'm going to increase the clarity like normal, increase the shadows just to bring out some of those flatbacks and a little bit more, I like the way they feel, but I feel like it could be a little brighter, but still flat. Going straighten out this image, make sure everything's level, make sure that my subject is completely in the middle. If I click the corner, like I'm going to straighten it, you get all of the lines of the actual photo so you can really see what's happening and line up your images perfectly. So, I'll constantly do that. Even if I'm not straightening it, I'll do it just to double and triple check that my photo's aligned. You can see that line goes directly through the statues head and into the body of the man below. If I were to throw this on Instagram, a quick crop. Obviously, it still picks from the same spot where I cropped last, so I already know that this is perfectly centered. Even on both sides here, left and right, symmetrical image for the subject perfectly in the center ready to go. 12. Editing: Look Ups: So, for this part, I'm going to edit my lookup shot using VSCO. I'm going to go through my photo album on VSCO and find the lookup shots that I want to edit. A couple of my favorites, a couple that I see that are symmetrical, on point, the lines are clean, the perspectives are right. Even from this angle and them being this little you should be able to see the lines the way you want to see them leading in the right way, the perspective is right. So, right here I'm going to actually sync these photos with my iPad using the new VSCO which is pretty amazing. Just press this Sync button and they will actually begin to pop up on my iPad. It's pretty amazing. So, here I go, I have all three photos that I took with my iPhone now on my iPad using the new VSCO. Extremely simple, extremely easy. So, I'm actually going to go through one by one and edit them. So, I'm going to pick the tool to begin editing. Usually, before I actually begin to pick any filters, I like to go through and edit the photo with some tools. One of the things I like to do first, of course, always is straighten the photo. The new VSCO 4 actually, the straightening tool is so much better than it ever was before. It's a lot more fluid, a lot more smooth, you can actually get a lot more precise with it this time. So, yeah, right now, I'm just worrying about this building here. I want to make sure that these lines are correct, that they're perfectly vertical. One thing that I would like to do is brighten my photos up a little bit even just by the hair. So, now I'm going to go and look through my filters. I can get all of them here. I, of course, always go to my favorite filters first and just see how they look. Of course, with VSCO, you can adjust the strength of your filter now. So, you just play around with it, edit to a level you like. Of course, I'm just going to play around find other filters that I like. You can just go through and spend all day picking filters. Of course, when you use it like I have, you have developed your own personal favorites. I'm going to go back to F1, going down a bit as I love this filter. Go back to my tool. I always like to, one of the last things that I like I do when editing my photos as the last step before I finalize it, I like to sharpen the image. I only do one and two and never go more than that. I think at that point you begin to ruin the image by how sharpened it is. But you also have to know that I'm also sharpening this image because I know that it's going to Instagram and once you upload the photo to Instagram it actually dumbs the quality down. So, you're preparing for that final step as well in advance to make sure that the images looks great on all platforms. Sometimes to the right before the end, after the filter has been laid on, I will play around with the color temperature, see if I like any changes in it. Now, I'm just going to go ahead and actually save this to my camera roll. From that same area, you're able to share your grid which is amazing, easy to do. The best part about your grid is that you get to curate it in a whole new way. The way I curate my grade is I post my best images on there. You can curate it completely different than I do my Instagram in a way more selective which is really interesting. But you can share your Facebook, Twitter, email, Google, Weibo, which I don't even know what the hell that is. I want to go on to my second image here that I took around the same time. Of course, the first thing you want to do is straighten. Right here I'm just trying to pay close attention to the lines, make sure that the lines that VSCO provided me are lining up with the building. So, I'm paying attention to this building and this building up here, paying intention to the lines in the architecture just to make sure I get it straight. I didn't see that. Actually, I didn't capture this perfectly down the middle, at least on this side. On this side I got pretty close. So, when that usually actually happens, what I like to do is actually I like to rotate the image and edit it this way and actually post it this way. When I don't have something that's perfectly symmetrical going up and down, I actually just kick it to the side. You just still get that feel of symmetry in those lines leading to this vanishing point. But it's actually harder to tell that the image is not perfectly symmetrical. So, the image is a bit dark, I'm going to just increase the exposure a little bit, and then go back to color work. Now, I'm just going to look at the previews that I have here and begin to pick my favorite filters that I see while I scroll through. A7 is actually really nice, I'm going to remember that. Check out some of these black and whites. I like how dark the black star here is, so one of these black and whites could play really nicely off that depending on the actual fade. You can always increase the fade on any of these filters using the tools. If I was just shooting this I love E5. E5 is definitely one of my favorite. Along with F1 both amazing filters. I'm actually going to go with this and go back and sharpen the photo up a bit. I like two or one or two I don't like going any further than that. I feel like the image begins to look too sharpened. So, even here I can begin to crop it using the one-on-one. You see even this left part, this looks perfectly symmetrical and even here it looks right, but if I were to flip it this way it wouldn't, but I even like that square crop. This is something that I would post. If you click on this top right while editing or any part, while selecting the photo, you can actually see all of the steps that you made while editing and get only rid of one without having to undo the entire editing process. You can actually get rid of that exposure or you can edit if you want. I can go back and just do one right back to zero. To do one, but also if I wanted to, I can actually just delete it completely. Go back see image much happier actually without the exposure brightening, head back, say okay, go to check mark, put the arrow, and save the photos to my camera roll. So, in this photo, when you go ahead and straighten the photo. Surely, look, the photo is actually pretty straight already. I was able to capture it pretty on point. You can see that this line matches really well the lines of the building. This one doesn't really matter as round and actually fit in anywhere. So, I'm just trying to make sure that this building is on point. Straightening is definitely one of the most important tools in photography. So, if you l look at your gallery and all your photos were slightly angled vs completely straight and on point, the gallery will look way more pro. If you like where my exposure's at, usually I don't increase the contrast until after I've laid the filter, I don't find any point so I contrast before doing that. It's not a lot of dark shadows happening here, so I don't really need something with any fade or something that's going to smooth out the blacks. I'm just looking for something that's going to create a nice color on the photo. Let's go to [inaudible] is such a good filter. [inaudible] guy killed it with that, F1 is still my favorite. I do like E5 though. So, I'm actually going to with this A7. I've been a big fan of A7 recently. I think that just came on a little too strong, so should I go out and play with it. One thing I like to do is actually bring it back to zero just to clear my eyes of the filter, and then bring it back in different settings just to see how I like it. Just refresh your mind. Because if you make these little adjustments. I don't, from where I was already at, I don't think your eye is able to see that as clearly as if you went to all the way back to zero and started again. Just finalizing my image. This image was already pretty clear, so I'm just going to keep it at one and I'm going to increase my contrast a bit actually. Just tipping the blacks a bit, brighten the whites, create a little more contrast between them. Then I'll click Exposure and lower it a bit. So, I'm going to click this button and actually see I didn't do that many steps to it to get it the way I wanted. I feel like less is more when working on these photos especially iPhone photos are easily vulnerable to being blown out and over-edited especially when you're new to photography and new to iPhone photography. So, just be conscious, less is more I think. Once I'm happy with it, just go back, click the check mark, and get this saved to my camera roll , and ready to export. 13. Editing: Motion: So, this is one of the shots that I chose of my motion blur shot. Obviously, I'm highlighting that. The moving object is still and the environment around it is blurry. One thing that I like about it is actually the car is still, but the rims you can tell are in motion. One thing that I'm thinking about when I edit this image is that I really want to make the yellow in the photo pop. I'm conscious of the yellow on the taxi. The yellow on the road, I really want to highlight this to compliment the taxi along with the yellow that's in the corner of the image on the other taxi. So, as I go through my presets, you can see that in the corner, the yellow does become affected by what filter you choose. So, I go ahead and pick my favorite filter, the filter that I use quite a bit, just do my natural settings. The yellow went a little lighter, if ou can go back and forth between that edit. You see it's this orange-yellowish tint to it. Once I put the filter over it, it becomes a lot more of this taxi yellow, but it comes out brighter yellow or I can change that in a minute. I'm going to continue and edit the image. I feel like the background back there in the white's a little bit too over exposed. So, I want to bring that back a bit not all the way, there's still the brightness to it. I like my clarity where it's at because I feel like the shot is already strong highlighting the taxi that I don't actually need to add that much clarity to the shot. But I am going to sharpen it a bit more. So, here under hue, saturation and luminance in lightroom, I'm actually able to manipulate that yellow and change it to how I see fit while still keeping the color tones that VSCO provided everywhere else in the photo. So, if I want to change that yellow, I can just go to yellow and begin to change the hue. So, you can see that everything that is yellow will begin to change, but then I can find that right tone. Then I can even bring down a little bit of this on the yellow everywhere, but it's where the car's tone actually becomes a lot more even. I'm also actually going to brighten the yellow too to help make it stand out that much. For the road here, I'm going to grab this tool, make everything level except I'm going to increase the saturation, a little bit for now, fix everything else and just go over this line. Patience is a virtue. You can already see the difference. I increased it all the way. How much more of that yellow actually stands out? From the left to the right of those lines, I feel like just with the brighter yellow middle, it just compliments that taxi that much more. So, I'm going to go ahead and finish this all the way through. Before, after. Yeah, one thing that I didn't actually like about is that I felt like I shot it a little bit too bright. So, when I go to edit it I don't want to actually darken this photo a bit. One of my favorite things about it versus the other shots from this, is that I love the light trail from the end of the train. Also that you can see the end of the train, that you know it's actually whistling past you because the lights are going from right to left. I love that you can actually see that, and feel that, and know that that's happening because you're telling a story through motion. Of course, first thing I want to do, I'm just going to lower my exposure a bit. Actually, it helps to get more clarity of everything that's happening, you see a lot more detail in the wood, the brightness and color of the red from the light trails are a lot more defined. You just see everything, that even the blacks from the shadow of the train, a lot more deep, a lot more colorful. So, as I'm going through and cycling through my VSCO filters, I'm looking for something that's really going to complement that red. Right here, this Kodak Portra 400 NC plus plus. I love that the actual tint and shadows of the photo are this deep red, which bring out the red in this brick, the red in this brick here, the brick red not the brick red, but the red on this roof of the train's top, but also the red to the train itself. Bring the highlights back down again because when I leave that VSCO filter on top, it did bring out the whites set up, it exposed those whites so I'm just bringing them back down to help tame it, to bring more details to the photo. Increase my clarity a bit as usual, I love to do that. I think it helps bring out a lot more detail, but also just helps give it this look that I enjoy from my photos. Of course, I'm going to enable the profile corrections. Usually when you do that, you fix that natural vignette from your lens, brightening up your overall image. So, always be conscious of that, always know that that's going to happen and adjust to that. So, I'll actually make my image a little bit darker. One thing that may do is tightening up this crop, just a little bit. I love the way these lines work where the way this corner, see this line goes directly into this corner. I love that, but I love the way that they go into the center of the image, from top into bottom, all leading into the left, and the train follows that line. That natural movement into the photo. Zero Grain, no Vignette. I don't want shadows, I'm not trying to highlight anything in the middle of my image, I'm telling the story as a whole. I want everything to be able to be seen, I'm not just trying to highlight something in the middle, but the entire image. One thing that I may adjust is the tone curve again. The blacks are beautiful and deep, but I do want to make them a little flat. So, I'm playing with the tone curve and I'm just lowering the bottom point. It's again, before, after. Huge difference. Completely bright. You don't even get this dark, deep black here quite yet. So, after that. Look at the richness and darkness even in the brick of those building. You can see so much more detail. You can see almost every brick now compared to before. So, as my second shot to motion blur that I'm going to be editing, I was actually able to capture this on the same train platform. You can see that it's the same red roof. So, I'm actually going to go back and copy my VSCO edit and all the work that I did except I'm not going to take the crop or any spot removal that I did. You notice that this image is naturally much darker than the one than this was at before. So, before, before. Obviously, way to- for images, but you can see the difference. Either this one the environment around is still, but the motion of the train is a blur or here you can see that the front of the train is still. This train is obviously still in motion with the back of the train is moving because it is a moving object. But you can still get a clear view of this train, the details, you can read that this is CTA, you can read the numbers 304. It just shows you how faster this train was moving. But, I want to actually paralyze images up. So, I know when I begin editing this I'm obviously going to have to brighten the image, but I'm going to go ahead and paste my edit first. Way dark. So, I'm going to go ahead and brighten it up. I have close to an image that I like. I like that my blacks here are a bit dark so I'm going to try to adjust accordingly. Yeah, I want to make sure I get as much train as possible because that is my main subject. But even as I brighten the image, the train actually became that much clearer and it actually becomes that more isolated. You get- it stands out that much more, especially with the edit. Increasing the clarity, boosting some shadows. Of course, my highlights once again are all the way down because I want to show as much detail in the photo as possible, especially when it's blurry because that naturally is going to take away details so highlights are going to help bring it back, help show as much of the story as possible. 14. Editing: Night Shots: So, for one of my night photography shots, I chose this one as a look-up shot. I really like this building. I just love the detail in it. I actually love that you can read everything that it says. I think that it just shows how massive it was and how epic this building was and the detail in it. I think my favorite things about it are these two lampposts. That's why I actually don't have it. That's why I'm not actually more underneath it, because I want to show as much of the lampposts as I can, I want to show as much detail. That's why my main focus was those lampposts when I was shooting this, I was focusing on them. Another reason why I chose this is actually, wanted the building to be completely full in this, I didn't want the sky. I actually wanted it to be completely full. So, when thinking about the look-up and I was thinking about the sky in the scale, I wanted the scale to show how big it was. I wanted it to be so big that I couldn't fit the top of the building in. In thinking about the sky, I actually wanted a locus sky, I didn't want negative space. So, even though it doesn't really show sky, I'm still thinking about it and how I want to utilize it in the photo. So, first thing I'm always going to do with a night shot is always play with the white balance, the color temperature of the photo. Try to get it to a point where I like and I obviously don't want the lights too blue. I want to get the building back to actually a normal color, a color that I can use as a base to start playing with when looking at other Visko filters. So, I'm just going to go ahead and look through, find the filter that I think is going to really complement this photo. So, I love this filter. Usually with night shots I always tend especially deepen my blacks and make them flat. I feel like it helps get rid of a lot of noise, helps fix just dark night shots. I feel when I get night shots, I tend to deepen the blacks even more and make them a bit more flat, just to help get rid of some noise that may be happening in the photo from the increase in my ISO. So, I'm just going to go ahead, increase my clarity, keep my shadows a bit down, I might even lower them. For this particular shot, I'm actually going to add a vignette, increase my feather a little bit, and just play my settings. It gets somewhere where I really just want this part of the photo highlighted. I don't need the top, they don't need the bottom, this already stands out a lot on its own. There's already a ton of light hitting because if you remember, there was a lamp right here just putting a ton of light in this building, and that's when I was really focusing on using the artificial light from that and these lamps to highlight and light this building, when I was shooting it. One thing that I like to do especially for my night photography shots, if changing the white balance and color temperature isn't enough and there's still a bit too much yellow and orange in there, I'll actually for shots like this that really yellow and orange isn't serving their priority, I'll actually just take a bit of the saturation away. You can see in this corner, it just removed all of that yellow. For me, I'm just going to find a balance where it doesn't look that desaturated, but that yellow is still gone. For me it just cleans up the image. I'm actually also going to even bring it down a bit and then move this to the center. You can see the corner of these windows line up with the square and the top of this is directly right down the middle. Before, after, before, after. So, this is another potential shot that I'm going to use under night photography on my shot list. One thing that I like is that the lights are on and you can see that it's as dark. I'm going to brighten it up a bit, just to really show what's happening in the photos, show the detail. But still keeping in mind that I want to keep this vibe that it was shot at night. So, before I go ahead and pick a filter, I'm just going to quickly do some color temperature adjustments. Increase my exposures a bit more. Remove that green, enable profile correction, fixing that vignette and that lens bubble. I'm just going to bring my highlights down. Because it's a night shot, the highlights become a way more dramatic, you see when I go up and down. Just down, up. There's such a big difference. Increase the clarity, it's going to boost some shadows. It's just his attire is so black you really can't see anything that's happening. You do that actually, it brings a lot more detail and everything that's happening around it. It's got a pretty pink tone. The Visko filter that I'm using right now naturally adds this pinkish tone but it's naturally pink from light floor, so I'm going to go ahead and change the tint a bit and bring it just a little more into the green side. So, a lot of orange happening in the photo. I actually want to get rid of it. So, I'm going to go to saturation and find orange and just decrease it. I'm actually going to go all the way to negative 100 and then just slowly bring it back. Then I'll actually do that a couple of times and just go back and forth until I find this number that I like. Once I see how I like it, I'll look at the number then actually go back to zero and then start over not looking at the number, finding it how I like it and then going back. Now it's turned off right there from the last time compared to where I liked it. No. It's like the third time doing it, I was close to the second time. I feel like I'm comfortable with how I like it. I should go ahead and make sure my image is straight. Just making sure that the middle portion of my photo is straight, so I'm worried about this line. I'm also making sure that he is in the middle of this photo. I'm actually going to bring this image up, giving it some more height, adding some more scale to it. Let's say one of my favorite things about this shot is that it's on the borderline of being nighttime and daytime. You can see that it is bright but it's also dark out. I'm using my camera in the ISO setting to really brighten up the photo, but you can see even the building lights and the street lights are on. So, it's got this really great balance of a night photo and a daytime photo. 15. Final Selections: So now, I have the four that I'm going to submit for my class project. One that hits every category. This is my street portrait shot. I love this photo. I think he's perfectly balanced in the middle. I love that the statue is right above him. The rotating doors on both sides, which is really nice. You actually can get even more city in the photo with the reflections that are happening in the glass right above the rotating doors. But I really love this photo. I love the person in it. I love his jacket. I think it's just a lot of vibes that are happening. But also that he's not paying attention to me, he's not seeing what I'm trying to look at, what I'm taking a photo of. You're just capturing this guy in his element. This is the look I've shot that I'm choosing. I love this photo. Crazy. Why, I shot this with the 14 millimeter when showing you guys the different focal lengths when shooting the look-ups using the 14 millimeter or the 24, 35, and so on. But I love how much cityscape is fitting in this photo. It looks like a cityscape shot while you're just the in the ground, just looking up. I like how much of this building is in here. I love how much of this building reflects onto this glass building. I actually liked that this light is on and this one on the left isn't. It's symmetrical but asymmetrical at the same time, breaking up the photo. But I know that even this photo, with how much is in it, would actually crop really well for Instagram, but also look really great for frame wide. I chose this photo. I love this photo. I love doing this with train shots. I think this is actually a really popular technique amongst photographer in brands. That's why I chose this one. I also love that you can see the end of the train, that you know it's the end of the train because of how clear it is. Always right versus how condensed the train is on the left, and then you can see the end of the light trail from the train's lights moving from right to left. That's one thing I like. I also like how the reds really pop out on this photo. Also, I selected this as my last shot because I wanted to showcase both types of motion blur. So, the other one that I chose was the motion blur where the environment was still and the moving object was a blur, and this one is a moving object as still where you can see the front of the bus this couple is still with the environment around them blurry. But once again, you can see the one with the ones shared in. That's perfectly readable, legible, clear, along with the front of bus. Even this fly, but everything else around it is blurry. Now that I selected the four photos that I'm going to use for my project, one from each category that we went over. I know my viewers are going to get a great idea of what Chicago looks like through ground level. But now, it's your turn. I can't wait to see your cities through your street photography projects on Until next time. 16. Learn More with trashhand: