PetaPixel

Street Photographer Joel Meyerowitz Shares His Thoughts and Techniques

Here’s a video in which renowned street photographer Joel Meyerowitz shows us his method of doing street photography. His quiet, friendly, and “invisible” style is quite different from Bruce Gilden’s in-your-face technique. The New Yorker also has a great video on Meyerowitz’s photography.


Thanks for the tip, Graysmith!


 
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  • http://twitter.com/Focaldesign Stefaan Ellebaut

    I don’t want to judge the quality’s of Meyerowitz at all, as I am not familiar with his work enough. But I never understood much of street photography and when I see the pictures in this movie, actually none of them make me think ‘nice’, let alone ‘wow’. 
    I’ve seen hundreds of people claim they are street photographers but only a handfull of them seem to have a way of taking a picture and making it more then a simple snapshot.

  • https://plus.google.com/111467571863784432386 Benicio

    So nice to see a video of a respectful photographer actually enjoying himself rather than the asshats that seem to garner all the attention lately.

  • http://twitter.com/DM_Zoolili David Mucelli

    Joel is one of the best street photographer out there. Not knowing him – and commenting on someone whose work you clearly don’t have a clue about – does not serve your point well.

  • http://twitter.com/Myrddon Henning Nilsen

    I love Joel’s work. Nothing too impressive in this video, but how often do you actually get something takes makes you go wow? Once a month if you’re lucky?

    That and his approach to it all is excellent. This is how I do street and I very rarely get into trouble or have people be offended.
    I get a smile more times than I get the finger.

  • spencewine

    Stefaan, I think this video is more of a demonstration of how to shoot street photography, not so much a exhibition of work – that said, there are still some really nice shots in the video. Here are links to some more of Joel’s work:

    http://www.in-public.com/JoelMeyerowitz/gallery/53

    http://streetreverbmagazine.com/2011/03/01/attention-joel-meyerowitz/

    and another video of Joel shooting NY back in 1981:

    http://www.in-public.com/news/2011/3/1981

  • spencewine

    Stefaan, I think this video is more of a demonstration of how to shoot street photography, not so much a exhibition of work – that said, there are still some really nice shots in the video. Here are links to some more of Joel’s work:

    http://www.in-public.com/JoelMeyerowitz/gallery/53

    http://streetreverbmagazine.com/2011/03/01/attention-joel-meyerowitz/

    and another video of Joel shooting NY back in 1981:

    http://www.in-public.com/news/2011/3/1981

  • spencewine

    Stefaan, I think this video is more of a demonstration of how to shoot street photography, not so much a exhibition of work – that said, there are still some really nice shots in the video. Here are links to some more of Joel’s work:

    http://www.in-public.com/JoelMeyerowitz/gallery/53

    http://streetreverbmagazine.com/2011/03/01/attention-joel-meyerowitz/

    and another video of Joel shooting NY back in 1981:

    http://www.in-public.com/news/2011/3/1981

  • spencewine

    Stefaan, I think this video is more of a demonstration of how to shoot street photography, not so much a exhibition of work – that said, there are still some really nice shots in the video. Here are links to some more of Joel’s work:

    http://www.in-public.com/JoelMeyerowitz/gallery/53

    http://streetreverbmagazine.com/2011/03/01/attention-joel-meyerowitz/

    and another video of Joel shooting NY back in 1981:

    http://www.in-public.com/news/2011/3/1981

  • http://twitter.com/Focaldesign Stefaan Ellebaut

    David, Spence,

    As I mentiond in my post I don’t know the photographers work so it was certainly not a negative remark towards his work in general. I also agree his way of doing street photography is very unintrusive in contrast to what I’ve seen on other video’s (more like street thugs or street cowboys shooting with a camera instead of photographers). 
    I’m only saying I never got the whole idea of street photography, I’m not against it any way but it’s just nothing for me. When I saw the title I thought, maybe this can change my point of view towards this branche of photography, but the pics I saw in the video didn’t change my mind unfortunatly, that’s all.

    Grtz,
    Stefaan

  • Anonymous

    I like Joe’s work and am quite familiar with the intersection of Fifth Ave and 57th Street (I live close by). I enjoyed a few of the tips he presented…. However…. It is quite unfortunate that a video on photography is shot in such a
    low resolution (240p really?) as to prevent one from really seeing the
    quality of his work. It’s 2011, there is no excuse for such low quality presentations.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t like his style very much and this video really doesn’t help much the ones who don’t know his work. As a street photographer I’ve seen a lot better, he haves a couple of powerful shots though but in general it’s not so great!

    http://500px.com/f3lixp

  • Anonymous

    I don’t like his style very much and this video really doesn’t help much the ones who don’t know his work. As a street photographer I’ve seen a lot better, he haves a couple of powerful shots though but in general it’s not so great!

    http://500px.com/f3lixp

  • Scottwight1974

    Everybody has their own opinion about things and so that means that what Stefaan said about Joel’s photo’s IE (when I see the pictures in this movie, actually none of them make me think ‘nice’, let alone ‘wow’. )and so that leaves u to be the one who is judging Stefaan for his oppinion on the photo’s people can like or dislike what ever they want with out being chastised for stating a fact…So piss off

  • StreetKing

    your stuff are just “good photos”. I don’t feel the need to look into your images but to judge the contrasts and other technical details. Street photography is about telling a story. street photography must be food for thought.  Street is a place of movement, from a point to another. It is the the photograph of a particular moment that makes you wonder the two end points of the movement what defines “powerful” street photography, and not shooting pictures of ethnic stereotypes peeling bugger off each others nose !

  • StreetKing

    your stuff are just “good photos”. I don’t feel the need to look into your images but to judge the contrasts and other technical details. Street photography is about telling a story. street photography must be food for thought.  Street is a place of movement, from a point to another. It is the the photograph of a particular moment that makes you wonder the two end points of the movement what defines “powerful” street photography, and not shooting pictures of ethnic stereotypes peeling bugger off each others nose !

  • Anonymous

    Well, by your description I can tell your visit to my photos was very fast! Anyways, I photograph since 2008, a lot to learn. I accept you critic though as you are the Street King!

  • Anonymous

    Dude, just because you’re watching this in 2011 doesn’t mean it was made this year. I mean come on, think for a second. It was uploaded (according to youtube) in 2009 and that still doesn’t mean that it was produced in 2009. It could have been made years earlier. Anyway, I reckon that the HD-uploads didn’t really take off until sometime in late 2009 so that is a good excuse “for such low quality presentations”!

    Seriously…what an idiot you are.

  • http://www.iphoneographynyc.tumblr.com Devyn

    You are correct, the video was made in 2003 according the the credits at the end which I obviously did not catch the first time around. That said, it would have been helpful to have noted this somewhere in the description on this post or on the YouTube page but I digress.

    As for video resolution on YouTube, They began 360p uploads in March of 2008 followed by 720p loads in November of 2008. 1080p uploads came along in November of 2009.

    What an idiot I am.

  • Anonymous

    Yup, maybe not an idiot, but stupid. kisses & hugs

  • Kathyjo

    Thanks for posting this. Because the streets are public places, can a street photographer publish these photos without getting signed consent?

  • spencewine

    yes, a photographer can publish these, but you cannot sell them to commercial entities in which the subject is exploited for a profit (e.g. selling a photo to Apple of someone with an ipod for use in an advertisement, etc). Think about it, do journalist have to get signed consent for every photo that appears in a paper? No, they are protected under the 1st amendment in the US. But every country has their own laws and it is best if you understand them before publishing anything.

  • spencewine

    yes, a photographer can publish these, but you cannot sell them to commercial entities in which the subject is exploited for a profit (e.g. selling a photo to Apple of someone with an ipod for use in an advertisement, etc). Think about it, do journalist have to get signed consent for every photo that appears in a paper? No, they are protected under the 1st amendment in the US. But every country has their own laws and it is best if you understand them before publishing anything.

  • spencewine

    yes, a photographer can publish these, but you cannot sell them to commercial entities in which the subject is exploited for a profit (e.g. selling a photo to Apple of someone with an ipod for use in an advertisement, etc). Think about it, do journalist have to get signed consent for every photo that appears in a paper? No, they are protected under the 1st amendment in the US. But every country has their own laws and it is best if you understand them before publishing anything.

  • Kathyjo

    Thank you spencewine!

  • Randell

    The man’s wasting precious film.