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Any tips on areas with photo-taking restrictions?

Travel Forums Travel Photography Any tips on areas with photo-taking restrictions?

1. Posted by LaguardiaC (Budding Member, 17 posts) 13 Feb '11 05:12

Of course, most of us know it's sensitive to take pictures of military installations - in most places. Anybody who know any other areas where you need to tuck in your camera and not end up being apprehended by the police or hauled for questioning? Please share an experience and spare many of us from getting into trouble.

2. Posted by Q' (Moderator, 1987 posts) 14 Feb '11 10:13

It's not just a question of the police or military. Photographers should also follow the rules of common courtesy and respect, as well as environmental protection.

Each individual has to make the choice for themselves. And that's where the debate starts. I know I've snuck a few shots in museums despite "No Photo" signs being posted. Personally, I don't think that's wrong. I, personally, will respect the wishes of priests and family members if I'm asked not to take photos. Some parents don't want you to take pictures of their kids, funerals, religious ceremonies and other such situations should be respected from a human point of view. And its up to each photographer's personal judgement. I'm not big on being paparazzo and it only takes a few bad apples to ruin it for the rest of us, you know what I mean ?

Also, as more and more people travel to wild places, I've seen a great number of photographers completely reck delicate natural places chasing a particularly elusive photo. It really struck home for me personally on one occasion. We were up in northern Ontario attending the yearly orchid festival up there and we ended up hiking with a local orchid expert. To give you an idea of the environment, these orchids are as small and delicate as a few blades of grass and live in small colonies several kilometers apart. Anyway, along the way he pointed out where people had trampled orchids and seedlings, where photographers had pulled up and flattened the area around certain flowers, and even saw one guy who'd setup his tripod in the middle of the road and looked like he was going to be there for several hours. Mind you, this particular orchid we were looking for had just been sighted on the mainland that year. Previous years you had to take a long boat ride to a small island to find them. Nature photographers MUST respect the natural environment in which they work. Who knows if the orchid even survived to the next year. And sometimes that means not taking the photo, at least until you learn how to take it using proper techniques that respect the environment. Anyway my $0.02.

3. Posted by LaurenLolz (Respected Member, 226 posts) 14 Feb '11 11:33

simply put, get approval.

take a picture from a PUBLIC place. no trespassing.

DO NOT EVER!!!!! take a picture (unless you are uber discreet) of a government/federal building.

do not pay ANYONE for a snapshot (street performers and such) just tell them that you will send them a picture.

do not be disrespectful.

do not use a tripod in times square, ny unless you have a permit. you will be asked to leave.

more often then not authority will ask you to leave, politely. they will not (on 1st glance) walk up to you and take your camera. if you do not comply things could go south.

4. Posted by Q' (Moderator, 1987 posts) 14 Feb '11 13:19

Quoting LaurenLolz

simply put, get approval.

Personally, I'm against going that far. If one needed to get approval to take photographs of everything 1) no one would take photos 2) the person you have to get approval from would feel harrassed after a while.

There are public spaces and private spaces. I don't believe that you always need to get approval to take someone or something's photograph in public. Infact, the law in most countries would agree with that. Having said that, the debate of what's private and what's public, what's freedom and what's harrassment is an endless debate.

As photographers I believe in following two rules:

1) Know what the law is.
2) Use common sense.

It is as much for the consideration of the people who are the subjects as it is for the photographer.

5. Posted by LaguardiaC (Budding Member, 17 posts) 14 Feb '11 17:24

yeah, the points raised are very important. especially respect. sometimes clicking our cameras also need sensitivity. i was once taking some pictures in zimbabwe when a woman signaled me not to take her photo. it was just an eye contact. i respected her wish. we owe people that.

6. Posted by madpoet (Respected Member, 409 posts) 15 Feb '11 04:57

I don't think you should have to ask permission of anyone, unless you are taking that person's picture, or you are in a private home or business. Buildings, parks, natural wonders: these are all fair game, unless there is a sign saying "No photos" and there is a valid reason not to (for example, a flash would damage a sensitive painting or because a place is sacred, like a temple or church).

If they do catch you taking photos where you aren't allowed, just play the dumb tourist who didn't see the sign. That always works. ;)

7. Posted by LaurenLolz (Respected Member, 226 posts) 17 Feb '11 14:24

Quoting Q'

Quoting LaurenLolz

simply put, get approval.

Personally, I'm against going that far. If one needed to get approval to take photographs of everything 1) no one would take photos 2) the person you have to get approval from would feel harrassed after a while.

There are public spaces and private spaces. I don't believe that you always need to get approval to take someone or something's photograph in public. Infact, the law in most countries would agree with that. Having said that, the debate of what's private and what's public, what's freedom and what's harrassment is an endless debate.

As photographers I believe in following two rules:

1) Know what the law is.
2) Use common sense.

It is as much for the consideration of the people who are the subjects as it is for the photographer.

righ, are you even a photographeR?

8. Posted by Q' (Moderator, 1987 posts) 23 Feb '11 17:40

Quoting LaurenLolz

righ, are you even a photographeR?

anybody who takes a picture needs to know what not to shoot.