Words cannot describe how much I like to take photos. Photos are like little memories, documenting a specific point in time. One can remember sweet memories through them (or bitter, your choice). Or one can form opinions about what is being depicted. Or one can simply marvel at the quality (or lack thereof. Some people take low-quality photos on purpose).
Candid photography, especially. The unplanned stuff, that all of a sudden you just decide to take your camera out and press that little button that makes the shutter click. Maybe something just happened that you want to document and put online. Or maybe they’re going to remove something soon and you want to have a memory of it. Or maybe you had a little spark of inspiration.
Photography is a powerful thing. They can evoke emotions in people that simple words cannot (a picture really is worth a thousand words). It’s the reason why Jacob Riis’s book How The Other Half Lives was so successful, because it included “real” images of what was really going on in the tenements. It is thanks to photography that we have poignant images like the flag-raising on Iwo Jima, or images of the aftermath of disaster, or even great celebrations of a world championship.
The only thing bad about this kind of photography is that it requires you to be a little bit of a creeper. Some people don’t want their pictures taken, and anyone with a camera is a menace to society. In that case, you have to be very secretive about it; out comes the camera, shoot, away goes the camera trying to stand out as little as possible. (Paparazzi are different. They’re not what I’m talking about.) And if you’re caught, there will be hell to pay, especially with some police officers that don’t realize that photography is allowed in the subway.
But oh well. We can always get that shot again, or some other that is better. That’s the life of a photographer. Jump on opportunities, don’t let them pass, or you will never get it again.