Shooting life on the street

Victoria ‘street shooter’ documents daily life

Victoria Camera Club member Don Peterson stands in Chinatown

With his camera hanging unobtrusively around his neck and his thumb positioned over his camera’s shutter button, Don Peterson goes looking for beauty and art in life’s everyday moments.

As he walked the streets of New York City last fall, he snapped raw and timeless black-and-white shots that documented people in simple yet powerful moments.

“That’s the power of the street photographer,” said Peterson. “You capture people as they are.”

This documentary-style street photography will be the focus of a workshop he is teaching on March 21 through the Victoria Camera Club. The club, which has about 150 novice to master members, hosts regular meetings, workshops, field trips and competitions for people to improve their skills.

Some shutter bugs have made street photography their life’s work, specializing in snaping moments in which their subjects don’t realize someone is there with camera in hand.

“The photographer doesn’t manipulate the subject,” said Peterson.

“With street photography, it’s a completely different mindset. You get out there and keep your mind completely open without preconceived ideas.”

Subjects aren’t asked to pose and artificial lighting isn’t used. As a result, the pictures reveal a compelling snippet at “the decisive moment.”

“You press the shutter at a moment that tells the story about society or the human condition or something about ourselves,” said Peterson, adding that the photo can also reveal surprises.

“You find something else in the photo that just makes it,” he said.

To capture these moments, he uses a Panasonic Lumix point-and-shoot camera, but many street photographers today prefer the 35-millimetre Leica. The invention of the first-ever portable, quiet rangefinder camera in 1929 is said to have revolutionized popular photography, and helped birth street photography.

But even young people today, with their smartphone cameras at the ready, may be engaging in this type of photography but don’t realize there’s a name for it.

“A younger audience could be fascinated with street photography,” Peterson noted.

The workshop is March 21, followed by two field trips on March 22 and 26, and a presentation in April. The session is open to members of the Victoria Camera Club, but new members are welcome. Yearly memberships are $65 for individuals or $85 for families.

For more information, please visit www.victoriacameraclub.org or e-mail president@victoriacameraclub.org.

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria shoppers fund Jubilee hospital cardiac monitoring

More than $40k raised over the holidays at Canadian Tire locations

BC Housing remains open to modular housing in Saanich, but acknowledges slow regional up take

Only one project with 21 units underway in the Greater Victoria

Malahat snow-covered as flakes fall across Greater Victoria

Snowfall warning in effect for parts of Vancouver Island

West Shore lands Pan Am Cross Country Cup

Event coming to Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort Spa in February 2020

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

POLL: Will you be wearing pink to take a stand against bullying?

Schools and workplaces across Greater Victoria and around the province will be… Continue reading

B.C. Special Olympics officially underway in Vernon

Athlete’s Oath: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”

Vancouver Aquarium wants your help to name a baby killer whale

The public helped name Springer’s first calf, Spirit, and is being asked to help with the second

Guards protest firing of fellow officers charged with assault at B.C. prison

Corrections officers demonstrated in Maple Ridge on Friday afternoon

Skier dies at Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Cause of death for young man has not been released

R. Kelly charged with 10 counts of sexual abuse

R&B star has been accused of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls for years

More sailings coming to 10 BC Ferries’ routes

Transportation Minister Claire Trevena said the sailings were originally cut in 2014

Cryptocurrency exchange CEO who suddenly died leaves Kelowna house in will

Gerald Cotten, holding the keys to money tied up in his virtual currency exchange, died in December.

Most Read