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111 – Concrete Beat: Capturing the Essence of a City through Street Photography

In this episode of The Nerdy Photographer Podcast, we delve into the captivating world of street photography, where the pulse of a city beats through every frame. Join us as we explore the art of capturing the essence of a city—the rhythm of its streets, the diversity of its people, and the stories etched into its sidewalks and skylines.

street photography podcast episode for phtoographers

Our guest, Phil Penman, shares his insights into the nuances of capturing the soul of a city. From bustling metropolises to sleepy neighborhoods, we discuss the magic of street photography as a means of documenting the ever-evolving tapestry of urban life. Phil also shares his tips and techniques for consistently finding interesting images to capture.

Street photography serves as a powerful lens through which to explore the complex layers of urban culture. By capturing fleeting moments of beauty, chaos, and humanity, photographers offer us a glimpse into the heart and soul of a city. From the iconic landmarks that define its skyline to the hidden alleyways that pulse with life, each image tells a story—a snapshot of the city’s past, present, and future. Join us as we celebrate the art of street photography.

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About My Guest

Phil Penman street photographer

The British-born, New York-based photographer Phil Penman has documented the ever-changing scene of New York City’s streets for more than 25 years. In his career as a news and magazine photographer, with a large body of work in such publications as The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Review of Books, among others, he has photographed major public figures and historical events. In particular, his report-age following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center has been featured on NBC’s Today show, as well as on the BBC, History Channel, and Al Jazeera, and his images have been included in the 9/11 Memorial and Museum’s archives.

His work covering the pandemic lockdown in New York City has been acquired by the U.S. Library of Congress, whose collection holds work by such great Depression-era documentarians as Walker Evans and Dorothea Lange.

Besides showing at Leica galleries in New York, Washington, D.C., Boston, and London, Penman’s signature street photography has appeared in international exhibitions as far afield as Venice, Berlin, and Sydney.

He also tours the world teaching workshops on photography for Leica Akademie. He was recently named among the “52 Most Influential Street Photographers,” alongside such legends as Henri Cartier-Bresson, Sebastião Salgado, Diane Arbus, and Garry Winogrand.

Penman’s book, “Street” , published in 2019, became a best-seller and was featured at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. His most recent book “New York Street Diaries” launched as the number one selling Street Photography book worldwide on Amazon.

You can check out Phil’s incredible work on his website or over on his Instagram

Are You a Street Photographer?

What did you think of this conversation with Phil Penman? Did it make you want to go out and photograph your surroundings? Tell us what you thought below, or reach out via our contact page or social media. Let us know if you have any photography related questions or what topics you would like to hear on a future episode as well.

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The Nerdy Photographer

With more than a quarter century as a professional photographer, The Nerdy Photographer's goal is to spread knowledge and laughter throughout the photo industry. Please follow along on social media and subscribe to the podcast.

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