September 20, 2009


This is actually something I have been thinking about a lot. How to deal with privacy as a photographer, as a blogger. As you might have noticed, you'll hardly ever see pictures of people here or in my photostream on Flickr. In my early blogging days I did post some pictures of my girls. I even had a family picture up in my profile. But at some point, as I didn't feel entirely comfortable about it, I took down those posts and changed my profile picture as well. I don't even use the full names of my loved ones for the same reason. The result is a little bit of a "sterile" blog, I sometimes have the feeling. 'Where are the real people?', you might have wondered. (Note: It's only recently I gave myself a face again on this blog.)

The same thing happens when I wander through town with my camera. I'll never take pictures of strangers, worried they might get upset when they notice they just got their picture taken. In some situations people in the picture are unavoidable, but even then I try to make them "invisible" by choosing a different angle or a different lighting or by waiting until they're gone. At stores or museums, I'll always ask for permission to shoot pictures first (well, I actually forgot to ask or check once ...). If I get a "no", then it's a no... The last thing I want is someone ranting at me or, even worse, my camera taken away.

How do you deal with these privacy issues? Should one tell a stranger they just got photographed? How about posting pictures of loved ones?

I'd like to know how you deal with this ...
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