Nat Geo Assignment: Street Photography

Nat Geo Assignment: Street Photography - Kristian Bertel
Street barbershop, India, submitted to ‘Street Photography’ on National Geographic.


See the National Geographic photo assignments that Kristian Bertel has participated in – Read the story about his photographs here…

Kristian Bertel has contributed to the National Geographic Your Shot photo community with an assignment called ‘Street Photography‘. The photo assignment curated by Benjamin Lowy, a photojournalist who in the assignment briefing is focusing on street photography as a harsh name for a beautiful pursuit.

As Benjamin is saying it: ”- To tame the chaos. To frame the cacophony of modern life. To capture what it means to be alive”, he says.


”Framing and timing can be key aspects of the craft with the aim of some street photography being to create images at a decisive or poignant moment”


Street photography as a topic
Street photography is photography that features the human condition within public places and does not necessitate the presence of a street or even the urban environment. The subject of the photograph might be absent of people and can be an object or environment where the image projects a decidedly human character in facsimile or aesthetic. Street photography is more than a phrase, it is a way of seeing, a way of experiencing life. Benjamin Lowe also explains that he thinks that sports photography can be street photography on the field. Fashion photography can be street photography backstage. At its very essence street photography is capturing life without interrupting it.

A street is a public thoroughfare and is usually paved in a built environment. It is a public parcel of land adjoining buildings in an urban context, on which people may freely assemble, interact and move about. A street can be as simple as a level patch of dirt, but is more often paved with a hard, durable surface such as concrete, cobblestone or brick. Portions may also be smoothed with asphalt, embedded with rails, or otherwise prepared to accommodate non-pedestrian traffic.

Originally, the word street simply meant a paved road. The word street is still sometimes used colloquially as a synonym for road, for example in connection with the ancient Watling Street, but city residents and urban planners draw a crucial modern distinction. A road’s main function is transportation, while streets facilitate public interaction.

”The street is a public easement, one of the few shared between all sorts of people. As a component of the built environment as ancient as human habitation, the street sustains a range of activities vital to civilization. Its roles are as numerous and diverse as its ever-changing cast of characters”


About the photograph
Kristian Bertel participated with one of his photos from India, which depicts a street barbershop in Mumbai in the Maharashtra province of India. “- I find it very interesting to see these barbershops in the street. I was visiting the Mahalaxmi area of Mumbai in India, when I saw this street barbershop. A barber was shaving a customer in his barbershop near the street of Anandilal P Marg. Grooming for men, including face shaving, are often done by a local barber. These street barber shops can be found many places in India”,
Kristian Bertel says.


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