12 Candid Photographs- A Single Expression

How I Take Candid Photographs

I do take lots of candid photos of people, no posing, no smiling for the camera.

I like to catch people in whatever mood they are in at the moment.

I do not, necessarily, care if I include facial expression, though that is a bonus.  Sometimes the body language speaks for itself.

To do this, I cannot ask them for permission to take their photo, as it would change their expression.

Working from generally accepted guidelines, that, if it is in a public space where privacy is not expected,  I have been able to get some interesting expressions.

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1. DISCONNECTED.  Shot at NY Botanic Gardens, this couple each seem off in their own world, at least for the moment.


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2. JOY.  These two boys, in Peru, were having a great time greeting the tourists and posing for photos.

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3. SADNESS.  On the other hand, this mother, with an infant in her arms, is truly unhappy.
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4. CURIOSITY & HAPPINESSS.  These two boys, on the back of a truck, in India have very clear expressions, as I snap their photos while the tour bus passes.

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Moscow, Russia

5. ANGER.  On the tour bus driving through Moscow,  Russia.  He was not happy.

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Peterholf Castle, St. Petersburgh, Russia

6. JOY. This is my wife, on a really hot tour day in St. Petersburgh. She decided to cool off. Her move seemed to inspire many other tourists to snap a photo, albeit from the wrong angle.


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Delhi, India

7. STRESSED. Or working or tired. Obviously the load this worker in India was transporting was too heavy to climb the slightest incline pedaling the bicycle.


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Sleeping, Thailand

8. RELAXED. Little boy napping in Golden Triangle area of Thailand.

Hangzhou Pagoda of Six Harmonies Maijong
9. CONCENTRATION. Serious Mahjong outside of Peking, China.  Even the onlooker seems well into the play.
10. CONCENTRATION. My daughter in 1980. She was quite intent on seeing what she could do with that flashlight.

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Ben Abelson 1982

10a. CONCENTRATION #2. My son in 1982. He too was all involved with the possibilities of a truck on a bench.
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11. WATCH ME. A boy doing flips off the boardwalk in Laguna Beach, California.

More of my people shots here.

And here

How to take candid people photographs

Glenn Abelson
Comments welcome, below.

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