Britsoc Photo Lesson #9 – Be ready before the moment

 Technical details; Nikon D700. AF-S Nikkor 50mm, f/2, ISO 1250 @ 1/200s

Late last year, prior to a client event in Barcelona, I had the rare opportunity to do some street work – my favourite form of photographic adventure.

Out and about on the streets around La Rambla, there was a biblical thunderstorm which went on for hours. The streets emptied and everyone either ducked into a local bar or went home. I ended up in an ice cream parlour. I noticed a large amount of rainwater had engulfed the street in front of the parlour and thought it might be interesting to see how people navigated it whilst staying perfectly dry myself. I put on my 50mm f/1.4 lens and waited and watched. There was nothing else to do!

For about 5 minutes I had been photographing people tiptoeing there way across the puddle but then something truly wonderful happened. As if on a movie set, two young ladies came round the corner and started singing, splashing and dancing in the rain with genuine gaiety. And, unbeknownst to them, I was there to capture this moment. The result was my favourite picture of 2014.

The lesson here is a simple one. When you are covering human activity  always be ready before the moment actually happens. Sometimes you won’t know what’s going to happen but you can be sure that where human beings are gathered, something is ALWAYS about to happen!

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