We love candid photos. They are usually taken in the moment and capture the spontaneous nature of human interaction. The best candid photos aren’t always the ones that look the most natural and that are the clearest. Sometimes the best candid photos are the ones that show us how to relate to each other. So we encourage you to find out what inspires you.
Go out and observe people. Look for the moments when two people meet, embrace, and then part again. Look at the faces, eyes, gestures, and the overall expression. See how the person responds to you. Ask yourself, “What does this person need?” How can I help her?
Make sure that the image has a specific purpose. Ask yourself, “What do I want to convey here? What message am I trying to send?” It’s easy to take a good photo of a face and a body but harder to produce something that conveys a message. Think about what you are trying to say and choose a picture that does this.
Photograph people as they interact with one another. Ask yourself, “What do I want to reveal about these people?” We would recommend looking at people who are not posing for the camera. Find out what they are doing and why they are doing it. When you photograph people doing ordinary things, you get more than just a snapshot. You can reveal a lot about people’s personalities and relationships.
Here are some of the best tips about candid photography. After reading these tips, you can find our candid photos for your inspiration at the end of the article.
Be aware of the environment.
A busy street full of people can look really exciting, but it can also look chaotic and overwhelming. You may not be able to capture the full emotional impact of such a scene. Consider, for example, photographing the beach at sunrise or sunset. This can be much more subtle. You can take your time to get the best shot and you can focus on details. The light can be very dramatic. If the sun is low in the sky you will have to shoot early or late in the day.
Consider the setting.
Are you photographing a group of people in a garden or a park? How about the sea, the desert, the mountains, or the cityscape? These places can have a strong impact on your photographs. Think about how to make them work for you.
If you are photographing a group of people, make sure there is a clear composition. Try to include some kind of focal point, like a person’s head. Take several shots until you find the perfect one.
Think about your subject matter.
There are lots of ways of shooting people. There are people who like to be photographed spontaneously and there are those who prefer to be posed. We recommend finding out what works best for you. Think about your style of photography.
Get inspiration from other photographers.
Read other people’s photos and get ideas from them. Check out the work of photographers you admire and copy some of their ideas. See if you can use the same techniques to create a different effect.
Watch other people’s videos.
Check out the work of photographers and videographers you admire and get ideas from their videos. Try to understand why they made some of their choices.
Learn from other people.
Watch the work of photographers and videographers you admire. See if they have any tips that will help you to get your own unique style.
Ask yourself, “What do I want to achieve here?”
When you are looking for a candid shot, think about the message you want to send. Ask yourself, “What do I want to reveal about the people in this picture? What message am I trying to convey?” You can also think about the setting, the light, and the atmosphere.
See if you can include something unusual.
When you are shooting a candid shot, consider adding something that is a little unusual. Try to think about what you can add that will make the photo stand out. It could be a special moment, a gesture, a thought, or even a special person.
Try shooting at night.
You might not think it would work but it often does. You can include the night sky in your photo. If you are in a bright room, try taking your shot at night. Alternatively, you could try using flash to illuminate your subjects.
Use long exposures.
Try to expose the image for longer than normal. It can make a big difference to the mood of a photograph. You could use a slow shutter speed to create a blurred background or a fast shutter speed to get a sharper foreground.
Ask yourself, “Is there a creative challenge I can take on?”
We like to find creative ways of shooting people and objects. When you do this, it becomes a challenge that you can enjoy. Do a search on the internet to see if anyone else has tried anything similar. It can be an exciting and rewarding way of working.
Use a flash.
If you use a flash, it helps to put it off to the side or above your subject’s head. This can create a stronger sense of contrast between the bright flash and the darker surroundings.
It’s important to avoid a direct flash.
It is always better to avoid having a flash directly over your subject’s face. The flash will make them blink and they might look away.
Do practice, practice, practice.
It takes a lot of practice to get good at any skill, including photography. It is always a good idea to spend some time practicing. You might try taking some pictures with your phone camera in a similar setting to where you will be shooting the final image. It is useful to know what settings you are likely to use. If you’re unsure, ask the owner of the place you are photographing.
Candid Photography Examples