Dave Mason: On the street

The start of a new season at the camera club was held recently with a fantastic presentation from Dave Mason of Canterbury. Entitled ‘I shoot people’ this was an informative and entertaining talk about street photography and how to do it without conflict!

Dave’s mantra is that he tries to find the extraordinary in the ordinary and although many of his images were aided by serendipity, he certainly knows how to find the bizarre and unusual in everyday life.
For many street photography is a difficult because it needs a certain amount of courage to take images of strangers. But Dave showed that if you know where people like to be photographed such as at the Elvis event at Porthcawl, tough guy events or even the pantomime horse race at Greenwich then you are less likely to have any problems. Other tips to avoid confrontation were to shoot from a moving vehicle such as a bus or to use street furniture to act as a barrier. And strangely, the closer you are the less obvious you are.

A good street photographer also looks out for what might be about to happen and to see links between parts of the scene that are happening in front of him such as an advertising billboard and the people passing it. The end result for Dave was to make people smile at the images which could be understood without any explanation.

His pictures certainly made us laugh and we all will have had our favourites. Maybe it was the one about a man appearing to be about to throw his child into the sea, or maybe the strange penguins of Redcar or maybe Dave’s penchant for crazy golf courses or covered cars – there was something here for everyone.