Photographing Markets

Guanajuato, Mexico-January 20, 2017: City Market

Visiting markets while traveling is probably one of the best experiences a photographer can have. They are the center for the culture and you can see what daily life is like. It's not always easy though. Sometimes it’s difficult to find, or hard to get to, or or not the safest place. However, with a few simple tips in mind, going to a market to do some photography can be easy and rewarding.

1. Know when and where the market is. This is probably the most important step because without knowing that, you’re not going to the market. Plan your day and transport accordingly.

2. Go as early as possible. Usually the best shots come from earlier rather than later when products can be sold out or the market gets too crowded.

3. Once you get there, scout it out before taking any pictures. If it doesn’t feel safe, just walk through and go back to wherever you came from.

4. Be respectful. If people say they don’t want their picture taken, don’t do it!

5. Get creative. When you’re in the market, turn it into a creative photo challenge. What I like to do is to pick up a few items from whatever market I go to and think of new ways to shoot them. The items can be anything from produce to placemats, but usually you’ll have a great variety to work with to develop new photo ideas.

And last of all, be curious. Markets are a wonderful jump into the culture to discover new things, new ideas, and of course new photos.

Photo credits: Angela Ostafichuk.

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