Friday Photo: Street Photography in Istanbul

8 Street Photography in Istanbul

Hello.  I know I haven’t posted a Friday Photo for a while.  That is remiss of me and for that I can only apologise.  Moving house and being battered by a man-flu virus of near Biblical proportions is no excuse.  (It is a bit of an excuse but I’m trying to be contrite here.)  But anyway, I’m back now and I thought I’d return with someone a little different for today’s image after being so long gone.  This is a shot I got recently on a street photography trip out in Istanbul with our collective The 8 Street.  (The 8 Street is a brilliant coming together of photographers essentially shooting weddings but wanting to extend ourselves and work within a wider range of modes — for more on us click the link at the bottom of this post and last month’s Photo Professional magazine.)  I framed this image, shooting through a car window, like this for a couple of reasons.  The essentially pragmatic reason being that as I’d approached the woman on the steps I could tell she was guarded and uneasy about the camera (even with the small, unobtrusive Olympus OMD-5), so I had to find a way of tactfully placing myself somewhere out of sight.  The second reason, being that in compositional terms the car window gave me an interesting frame surrounding the woman sitting in the last rays of the days sun with a dark back counterpoint, as well as using the reflection of the ship to give a slightly wider, if oblique, context.  Istanbul is also very much a city of old and new so I like that his is an old woman smoking on the steps of an old building, shot through a brand new car. It’s that sort of coming together of various elements that make this such a rewarding image for me.

PS.  Directly after I took this shot she turned her back to me, so I was fortunate to get it.

istanbul 8 street

NB.  A quick note about the Olympus OM-D.  Seriously this is an amazing little camera.  Small and discreet, quick to focus and fire with amazing image quality.  Our previous 8 Street outing was in Paris, where I tried to shoot with my Canon 5D MKIII.  That was a horrible experience, trying to go unnoticed with a huge DSLR camera and bulky lens.  It was like trying to shoot subtly and discreetly with a loudhailer while drunk on top of a stepladder.  This little camera is a game-changer for street stuff.

Technical details for the photography wonks:

Camera: Olympus OMD-5

Lens: Olympus 17mm (translates as 35mm on a four-thirds camera)

Aperture: f10

Shutter speed: 1/125

ISO: 250

To see more from The 8 Street click here…

1 Comment

  1. Hazel Thomson

    When I saw this photograph the other day, it immediately made me stop. It reminds of a Scottish painter, Joseph Farquharson. He painted mostly country scenes in Scotland, in the snow. However during the 1880’s he went to Egypt, and over the next ten years he painted images that he had seen and sketched during that trip. These are my favourite paintings of his, and they are hanging in Aberdeen Art Gallery. I love to just stand and look at them, they transfix me. You can feel the heat radiating off the ground, and the dust all around. So when i saw your photo, I thought of the Orange Seller. I have it up in my office. I think it was the colours that made me think of it. Your photo made me think of the two worlds, just like you mention above, the old and the new, contrasting. I love this photo Nick. Its truly wonderful. Heres are link to the painting incase you want to see it.


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