Photography, fear, film and inspiration…

The hardest thing for me about taking pictures is that I’m usually embarrassed to do it. It feels like intruding to take out my huge camera and poke it into people’s faces and daily lives. It’s especially intimidating in Russia because there’s always a security guard, police officer or former KGB museum docent lurking somewhere nearby to jump out with scolding and demands to see your paperwork. Are people here really still afraid of spies or is suspicion just a long-ingrained Soviet habit?

That’s probably why most of my pictures are of buildings or flowers or things inside my apartment.

How do you get around this? What’s the key, the secret to really capturing the moment with your lens? Do you just have to have confidence? Introduce yourself to the people you take pictures of? Snap and run? Any advice?

There are so many cool things to take pictures of in Moscow!

Like this sleepy summer series at the Moscow Times:

photograph by Igor Tabakov, Moscow Times

or the latently dangerous docents themselves, captured by photographer Mae Ryan at Moscow’s Polytechnical Museum:

by photographer Mae Ryan

National Geographic has a whole section on their website devoted to photography techniques…

1) How to Take Photos of Cities: 

Photograph by Justin Guariglia, National Geographic

2) How to Take Camera Phone Pictures:

Photograph by Bal Malla, 'Your Shot', National Geographic

What’s the best photography advice you know of?

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