I have been shooting on India's streets for 6 years now, its been an amazing experience, but it is not easy to photograph a country with more than a billion people and such huge cultural diversity. So if you have any disappointment with your pictures don't be too hard on yourself. Here are some tips which can help you capture India.
When you’re clicking a person, even a little girl, let them or their parents know that you intend to click this person. If you want your shots to be spontaneous find other tricks but do not not inform them. It can get you in trouble later if they do not want you to have their pictures & they are not going to tell you this nicely. So it is better to let them know beforehand.
If you move your camera towards them & they say no, which they mostly tell you through their gestures, understand their disapproval as quickly as possible & try not to pursue it because it’s not going to work no matter how nicely you ask or how polite you are, no means no! I have clicked lots of street shots over the last couple of years from New Delhi to really small towns of this country, touch-wood I was never denied except this one time in Bangalore when I approached a Muslim girl & she was like “I’m really sorry but I can’t.”
Yes! Its true Muslim women rarely let you click them & if you’re a male it’s almost impossible but they are worth a shot so try & try, but try not to have high expectations. I had a wonderful experience clicking these girls in new Delhi, they were fun and so comfortable with the camera that if you look at this shot you cannot tell if they already know that I'm there to click them or not.
PS : I did ask for their permission, never take it lightly with Muslim girls.
I have seen lots of photographers planning there shots and asking people to practically pose for them, I do not prefer these kind of street shots but if you do it becomes more challenging, and your challenges are
It is obvious that sometimes people expect you to give them some money, but do not offer it on your own, let them ask and then give the money. If you start a conversation by offering money a lot of people might be offended and you pretty much ruin your chances of capturing any pictures around that area, because they are gonna let each other know your 'disrespectful' behavior and stare till you leave :). If you just want to be nice and still offer something you can carry chocolates.
I am a professional photographer based in New-Delhi India, specializing in people and places with a style consisting of colorful and also monochrome imagery. In this blog I share pictures & stories of my travel & everyday life.