Scared to even go out

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by JCook0113, Nov 25, 2018.

  1. JCook0113

    JCook0113 Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    52
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2017
    Location:
    Bentonville Ar
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I hope this is the right place to ask something like this.
    When I was young, I couldn't wait for the day when I could have my license and not need my busy parents to randomly drive me around to take photos. I would look out the backseat window of our car, taking mental pictures of the strange things I passed by on our way to Walmart or something. And now, I finally have my frickin license.
    And I won't leave my house.
    I obviously drove around looking for things to photograph the first day I got my license, but come to realize, most of those places I can't really take pictures of because it's either on someone's property or I would have to get odd looks from people in their cars driving by while I take pictures of the weird things I like to photograph. None of the interesting places I want to photograph would get me into trouble and I could easily just hop out of my car and take it (take 10 minutes to take my light meter out and set my exposure) or ask permission, but I am so shy I literally can't do it. I live in a smaller town so most of the things to photograph aren't on public property, or highly populated places (more usual places to take pictures). So many excuses and I find myself drowning in youtube videos or editing past photos aimlessly, wishing I could take better ones. I honestly don't know why I wrote this, maybe someone can help or has the same issue. Maybe one day I'll move to a city where I can get more ambiguity.
    Thanks for reading my rant.
     
  2. Eric Rose

    Eric Rose Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    6,045
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2002
    Location:
    On the round side
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I understand how you feel. It can be tough getting the gumption up to get out and do your thing. All I can say is focus on the adventure and try and quell those little voices. the more you do it the better it will get. After awhile if you live in a small town people will just get use to you.
     
  3. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    25,466
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    paswonquitte
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    each time you do it, it gets easier and easier...

    there is a place i stopped near me off the side of the road .. pulled over
    flashers on, get out of the car with a big wood box camera on a tripod
    set it up
    people passing by honking making dumb faces, rubbernecking making silly looks
    some lady and her mom drove by and saw me later in the day and said
    " what were you doing with that birdhouse near the woods"
    the more people see you with your camera stopping and taking photographs the less
    of a strange site it becomes
    .. so have it with you, sport it and use it :smile:
    dont' forget to have fun :smile:

    john
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
  4. Kino

    Kino Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    2,443
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2006
    Location:
    Virginia
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I understand how you feel. I grew up in a similar small town in Southern Oklahoma and felt very conspicuous when I got my first 35mm SLR. People seemed to think me "peculiar" for wanting to photograph everyday things around the area; some were downright hostile and suspicious.

    I crept around and tried to shoot without drawing attention, but found that made people even MORE paranoid and suspicious! I found that if you wheel up, grab your camera and start shooting like you belong, people will generally leave you alone or at worst, come over and talk to you about what you are doing.

    Be prepared and have an honest answer; I was one of the High School Yearbook Photographers, so I could us that line or simply tell them photography is my hobby and I found a nice shot here.

    It helps to have a few photos in your back pocket or camera bag; doesn't matter if they are very good or not, just a sample of your work and that seems to satisfy most people. You'll often be regaled with stories of their friends or relatives that "liked to shoot pictures" or how they once did the same thing, but if you show some interest, ask a few questions and have a genuine conversation, you'll often have a nice encounter and never have to worry about them being hostile again. In fact, you can often ask people in a small town if there are any very nice views or interesting subjects in the vicinity and draw them into your hobby! More than once I had strangers not only suggest some really interesting locations, they knew or owned the land on which the place was located and helped arrange for me to get in and have a nice day photographic something I would have never even know about!

    Of course, you need to courteous; not let the cows out if you have to cross pastures, don't litter or damage any sites you visit and always thank the person or persons for the opportunity to photograph their property. If you can, give them a sample print or two of your work as a thanks. This will not only help cement your reputation as a responsible photographer, it will make you a bit more disciplined to make better images to hand out to the property owner. As you do this, word will spread and you will just be an accepted fact in the area.

    There will be some people who are just too self-centered to be gracious enough to let you shoot, but you can just thank them and go look for the next, better inclined person. Don't take it personally; just route around the problem and don't dwell on it...

    Hope this helps.
     
  5. seall

    seall Member

    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2013
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If you find a place that others present also are there because they are interested in the place itself then maybe it is more acceptable for someone to be taking pictures. If I visited your area I would likely want to take photos in the Crystal Bridges Museum which does give some freedom for personal photography.
     
  6. Pieter12

    Pieter12 Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    187
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2017
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Unless you are going to use the photos for commercial rather than personal or artistic purpose, in the United States you can photograph anyone or anything that is in public view from public property (the street or sidewalk in most instances). Some Federal property is the exception, and I wouldn't photograph if there is a "no photography" posting of any sort.
     
  7. Svenedin

    Svenedin Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    1,196
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Surrey, United Kingdom
    Shooter:
    Med. Format RF
    I can appreciate you might feel nervous or self-conscious but I think it’s anticipatory anxiety. In other words, once you actually get out there you’ll be fine. Don’t overthink it, just do it. Assuming you live in a relatively safe town what’s the worst that can happen? A few funny looks? Does it really matter what people think? Now you have the freedom of a car you don’t have to be limited to your home town either.
     
  8. Bill Burk

    Bill Burk Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    6,181
    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2010
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    I looked at Google maps of your area and see what you mean. Practically everything is somebody's backyard.
    There's the Slaughter Pen trail that looks like it might be fun. I like taking photos of the local bike trails because the sharp banked turns and deep dives give a weird look to the old "winding road" cliche.
     
  9. wyofilm

    wyofilm Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    355
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Location:
    Wyoming
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Safety in numbers. Take a good friend or sibling along with you during your first outings. In a cases like these the more you do it the easier it will get. You can do it.
     
  10. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    28,099
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Groups:
    All of the above about the more you do it the easier it will become.

    Plus if you are on a public road or sidewalk, there are no privacy expectations of others.

    Start in very public places like parks, monuments and public events. Soon this will not be a problem.
     
  11. Nodda Duma

    Nodda Duma Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,766
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2013
    Location:
    Brookline, NH
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Took a long time to get up the gumption to pull over and pull my camera out, and I’ve been driving for decades! Now my big camera and I are a familiar sight in my town and people wave as they drive by.
     
  12. TheGreatGasMaskMan

    TheGreatGasMaskMan Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    120
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2017
    Location:
    Michigan, United States
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I say start off with backroads, and work your way up to more populated areas. I don't like pulling over when there's people behind me, but getting over that is a goal of mine. Traffic should only be a safety concern.
    e017.jpg
    Also, city walks with a camera aren't that bad. I was a little uneasy the very first time I did it, but the worst you have to worry about is people coming up to you and asking you about your camera (unless you go hardcore street photographer and and get in peoples' faces, but I've never tried). DSC_0880.jpg
    people are more likely to notice your camera if it's not an slr (I've gotten more attention over my yashica mat 124g vs my nikon d3300), and unfortunately, country people are more paranoid about cameras than city people.
    Long story short, just get out and gain experience. This is something I need to do more often myself.
     
  13. slackercrurster

    slackercrurster Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    542
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Location:
    L.A. - NYC - Rustbelt
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    OP, since you are a puss (and I mean that in the nicest way) You have to do sneak shots. After you grow some balls (if you are a guy or ovaries if you are a girl) you can then shoot somewhat normal.

    I am writing a book about high level candid street work which I am a world leader in.

    Here is one way from the book...

    Put your camera on a shoulder strap. Put the self-timer on. Cover any blinking lights with gaffer tape. Hit the self-timer button surreptitiously while pointed away from your subject. Turn so your camera is pointed towards you subject and boom...you got a no hands shot.

    Here is an example of a self-timer candid of a Bishop that retired and was investigated for sex molestation charges.

    Bishop D.D. Teoli Jr. LLR.jpg

    You should also practice shooting your TV screen.

    Good luck!

    赤外線フラッシュ撮影の世界的リーダー
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
  14. Sponsored Ad
  15. Colin Corneau

    Colin Corneau Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    2,074
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Location:
    Winnipeg MB Canada
    Shooter:
    35mm RF
    This is an outrage, it's common knowledge that it is ME who is a world leader in this kind of photography and now some pretender dares to make such a statement.
    I demand satisfaction, sir, and I hereby ask you to bring pistols at dawn. We'll settle this the manly way. Also, pistols may help one with shyness in small town street photography, keeping somewhat on topic.
     
  16. wyofilm

    wyofilm Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    355
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Location:
    Wyoming
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Most definitely don't go around sneaking shots. You will only look sneaky, unless you get good at it. Take you camera out (in full view) and take your picture. Once you see that nothing bad happened, do it again.
     
  17. slackercrurster

    slackercrurster Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    542
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Location:
    L.A. - NYC - Rustbelt
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    OP, everyone is not cut out for street work. Maybe you are an indoors studio photog? Weegee and myself both view tabletop photography as mental masturbation photography. Even so, it takes special talent to do good tabletop work. Find a niche you can naturally work in that work for you. For instance, I don't like talking to people, so embedded projects and street portraits are not my thing. Find your thing!

    C
    E
    F
    L
    M
    N
    P
    S
    U
    V
    Pages in category "Photography by genre"
    The following 90 pages are in this category, out of 90 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).

    A
    B
    C
    D
    E
    F
    G
    H
    I
    K
    L
    M
    N
    O
    P
    R
    S
    T
    U
    V
     
  18. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    8,442
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Pistols... PuLeeze... why not a good ol’fashioned knife fight?
     
  19. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    25,466
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2003
    Location:
    paswonquitte
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    jets? sharks?
    where's maria ?!
    hope you 2 can dance and snap your fingers !
     
  20. slackercrurster

    slackercrurster Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    542
    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Location:
    L.A. - NYC - Rustbelt
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    That is up to the individual. I have put many sneak shots into museum collections. As a documentary photog your job is to get the shot any way you can. But again, it is up to you.
     
  21. Theo Sulphate

    Theo Sulphate Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    5,571
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2014
    Location:
    Gig Harbor & Palm Springs
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    In a big city, almost nobody pays attention to someone with a camera. In a small town, you're more likely to get attention, but I doubt anyone really cares. Even so, it's hard to convince oneself that others aren't likely to confront you (that's the real fear, isn't it?).

    Basically, don't photograph children or anyone's wife, sister, or girlfriend. Don't make it appear you're singling someone out.

    It's actually easier the more conspicuous you are. Only twice in my life, about 45 years ago, did someone ask what I was doing. One big guy at the beach in Santa Monica thought I'd photographed him - I just firmly and dismissively stated that I didn't take his picture (which was true). Another guy saw me photograph the tail end of his '59 Caddy and asked "what was that for?" - I simply told him I liked the car.

    These days I photograph landscapes, cityscapes, and buildings. Usually I have a 35mm SLR or a medium format camera (e.g. RB67 - not a small camera). No one notices me making photos or even cares. I'll bet that'll be the majority of your experiences as well.
     
  22. wyofilm

    wyofilm Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    355
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Location:
    Wyoming
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Ok, I'm not trying to start a pissing contest here. My comment was not related to you. I was answering a question from the OP - a shy kid. Not the the world's leader in street photography.
     
  23. Pieter12

    Pieter12 Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    187
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2017
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    It doesn't seem like you are trying to do "street photography" of people. Are you using a large format camera that will take a while to set up, etc? Otherwise, you should be able to take the pictures you want--you say they are scenes you've witnessed from your parents' car--just stop by the side of the road and it will only take a few minutes. And if the town you live in is really small, people might come to know you as the kid who takes pictures. Nothing wrong with that and you'll be able to photograph a lot more with that kind of reputation.
     
  24. P.johnson14

    P.johnson14 Subscriber
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    74
    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2017
    Location:
    Sherman, NY
    Shooter:
    Instant Films
    I live in a small rural town. The same rules apply if you are shooting a camera as if you are asking to hunt on someone’s land. As long as you belong (my Wife and I moved into Howard and Betty’s house 8 years ago. You know, the one with the willow tree across from the Mail Pouch Tobacco barn? Yeah! We have the vegetable farm...) and are respectful, people in rural towns are pretty cool. There are a few people in my town who are known as photographers, I’m the one that messes with the old cameras. When I go to the next town over, which is a vacation spot, I bring my wife with me. I find that she alleviates any concern people have about someone walking around taking photographs.
     
  25. jim10219

    jim10219 Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    895
    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2017
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    That sounds like the same advice I'd give. But I live in Oklahoma, so maybe that's just how you deal with suspicious Okies. Always be polite and courteous. It helps to get them talking and ask them questions like if they know of any good places. Attitude is everything.

    Which is why the most important thing to take from this, in my opinion, is to act like you're supposed to be there. If you act confident, work slowly, and don't shy away from people who come up to you, you can get away with just about anything.

    As for the shyness, that goes away with experience. The more positive experiences you have, the less shy you become. I used to have crippling social anxiety disorder, but I worked hard to get past it, one outing at a time, and now it doesn't slow me down (too much). I still get nervous around new people and places, but I'm used to the nerves. I frequently tell people, "I'm still scared of everything. But when you're scared of everything long enough, you get used to the fear and do it anyway."
     
  26. dmr

    dmr Member
    Ads Enabled

    Messages:
    746
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2005
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I've been taking photos in public since I was in my teens and very seldom have I ever been confronted. More often it's someone who is curious as to what camera or film I am using.

    The only times (two IIRC) I remember being confronted in maybe the last 10 years or so have been in casinos, and in both cases it was by security.
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies. If you have a Photrio account, please log in (and select 'stay logged in') to prevent recurrence of this notice.