I am starting to have some trouble in visiting cities as a tourist and just do some sightseeing. When abroad for a conference recently, I was happy to have a morning off and to shoot some photos. Before discovering street photography, I was interested in sightseeing. But this was before… Now, I am just looking at the people around me in order to spot the next interesting subject for my photo. Although, this approach is personally much richer as I understand much more about myself and am more focused on the individuals and society that surrounds me, I stop paying somehow overly attention to the city and its buildings – and in case I am, it is just to put architecture or shapes in the service of the individual/s I want to take a picture of.
This said, this view also changed very much my view on the contextual factors when visiting a city: before, I somehow tried to avoid crowds; now, if the places and streets are crowded with tourists, it permits to somehow disappear in the crowd and get much closer to subjects without creating curiosity. The picture below is one I took of a woman who was a member of a bigger group of tourists. However, it was quite odd to see her visiting the beautiful city while reading a book (seems like a diary).
Given my earlier posts and pictures of the local population at weekly markets, big cities with a lot of tourists present a brutal difference, but are equally interesting for people-centered street photography I think. Personally, I still prefer the weekly markets with locals, because chances are a bit bigger to catch nice moments between the people.