Best Lens For Learning Street Photography

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Understand The Limitations Of The DSLR Lenses:

Photography is a skill-based job. You have to first learn the basic skills to operate camera.

There are different tools in the camera. The technique to use these tools in a better way brings efficiency to your work.

You can achieve your desired results with the help of the lens. Every lens has its limitations.

You need to understand the limitations and scope of the lens. Once you understand it, you can portray your creativity in the best possible way.

Play With Different Settings In Your Camera:

Do I need a specific brush to learn paint on canvas? Which instrument you need to create soulful music?

These questions remain unanswered. Being a musician you can start hearing music even coming from rain.

Once you acquire skill, everything becomes a tool around you. You must keep making photos and understand the limitations of the camera and lens.

Try every single option in your camera. Do not fear to play with different settings and functions. Make as many as photos you can.

18-55mm Lens Pushes You To Move In Closer:

18-55 mm is also known as kit lens. This most underrated lens is best for learning street photography. I learnt street photography with 18-55 mm on a Nikon crop body.

But, I decided to explore its full potential before entering into a professional photography. I made thousands of shots with one camera and one lens only.

Read also: Types of DSLR Lenses

First, I tried to capture a distant subject and its moments with 18-55 mm. I failed to have good shots. Later on, I understood the limitation of 18-55mm.

I realized that I have to get closer to the subject to make a good composition. But, there was a fear to get closer to the subjects. I had only 18-55mm kit lens.

18-55mm pushes you to move closer for making photos of your subjects. I started getting closer to the subjects. This made the difference in my shots.

As Robert Capa said “If your pictures are not good enough, you are not close enough.”

Practice To Get Closer To The Subjects:

Little by little, I found myself engaging with the street life. It was a changing moment.

I learnt to feel the life of street, to be empathetic at the same time. That makes a difference in street photography. You have to be in the moment.

I loved 18-55mm for capturing street life. Many people does not believe that it is a lens made for street photography.

If you want to make good portraits, you will have to get closer to the subjects. It takes away your fear.

You also get very good wide shots with the same lens. You start communicating with the people and life around you.

There is no such best thing when you become skillful in any art. Henri Cartier-Bresson created magic with 50MM.

Vivan Maier also did magic with the same lens. William Klein captured awesome Street life with 28mm. Sebastio Salgado brought stunning pictures of globalisation with 35mm.

Henri-cartier-bresson in action

Photograph by Sebastiao Salgado of the mine workers.

Photograph by Sebastiao Salgado of the mine workers.

Vivian Maier’s selfie with a reflection of herself.

William Klein’s most circulated pic. He became famous for capturing the best street life of New York.

Style Of Photography Matters For Street Life:

In the end, what matters is your inner self. What kind of a photographer you are?

Whether you like to move in closer to subjects or keep yourself away? Or you indulge in talking with your subject and release shutter in between the conversation?

Your nature of doing photography tells that how much distance you want from your subject. Learn to capture best street portraits with 18-55mm.

Once you are done with this lens. Accordingly, invest your money in different fixed and prime lenses. At first, you can learn to see the art of street life through 18-55 mm without investing extra money.


Stay connected with us through our social networks. We will be posting more content related to photography. Keep sharing the knowledge with us and others as well. 

Siddharth Malkania

Siddharth Malkania is a journalism graduate from Indian Institute of Mass Communication. Having worked as a photojournalist for two years, he traveled to Tokyo, Paris, Barcelona and Amsterdam to brush up his skills of photography. Currently, He is a professional photographer based in New Delhi, India.

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