Street Photography – My First Love

Today’s Post by Mark Toal

When I was growing up in the 1960’s, street photography was still fairly new to the masses. The first smaller 35mm SLR cameras were becoming more popular and affordable. When I received my first SLR for Christmas one year I hit the streets.

Alberta St woman on chair 3 copy

I grew up in the suburbs south of Miami, Florida so I would take the bus to downtown Miami and over to Miami Beach to visit my father. I would walk the streets and beaches with my 35mm camera and two lenses, a 50mm and 135mm. I was a shy kid so the 135mm telephoto came in handy so I didn’t have to actually talk to people.

Alberta two men

I still love street photography, it keeps me sane on all the trips that I do for Panasonic. I hit the streets in the morning before work looking for coffee and photos and again in the evenings, especially in the summer.

Alberta street carrying dog

Panasonic recently sent me a pre-production version of a new Leica 12mm f/1.4 lens for Micro Four-thirds. I put in on my Lumix GX85 and headed to the Last Thursday on Alberta Street Festival here in Portland. I decided to shoot everything at f/1.4 to see if I could get shallow depth of field, which is normally difficult with a wide-angle lens.

This might be the perfect street photography lens for me.