Vietnam Photo Trip

Tips for interesting Saigon photo tour – P.1

Saigon Photo Tour - city tour

A Saigon photo tour is not just a photo trip, but it also a trip to experience daily life of the local people as well as the local photographers. As a foreigner walking around with a camera, you will feel yourself as a local people and even more since people are very nice in front of the cameras. Just make sure to show up at any location and situation with a smile, and a Vietnamese greeting throwing out before pointing the camera at the local life.

Henri Cartier Bresson with his “Decisive moment” is my idol since I started to step into street photography. That open my mind to another perspective of street photography in which I am part of the small life stories that I captured through out each step of my daily life. Plus I am exposing myself to know other people life around me, it is me who step into that, which I will never know by watching TVs or through other media.

Though I have not spent much time onto street photography but there are a few tips which are from myself, and I would love to share for a more interesting Saigon photo tour.

Saigon photo tour hosted by vietnamphototrip.com is a trip by local enthusiastic photographers who love to share everything, not to hunt for awards. The tour will take your through some main historical spotlights of the city, then to the new vivid developing city and will end with a nice local food treat. Definitely you will see much life stories going on along the way, plus the dedicated extra-cautious bike drivers will drive you through the city. What you need to do is to enjoy the ride, make your camera ready and you can even ask them to stop for capturing interesting moments along the way.

Saigon Photo tour – Make it even more interesting

Slowly approach and be naively friendly

I saw this woman cleaning her kitchen stuff right at a pavement of a main street in District 1.

Saigon Photo Tour - city tour
What a big cleaning place! – Photo by Tue Nguyen

As seeing her from afar, I started to walk slowly to approach her. Just 2 meters away from her, I stopped and looked for a while. She look back at me, I smiled back at her immediately and say “Wow, what a big cleaning place!”. As seeing me with a camera in my hand, she replied in a grumpy way “This is the first time I do it here, do not put me onto the news paper”.

Realized that she is feeling very uncomfortable of me with a camera in front of her, I said “Don’t worry, I am not a reporter, just a photography learner doing an assignment for my teacher.” Right at that moment, she looked totally relaxed and keep on her cleaning work and just leave me taking as much as I like.

During the Saigon Photo Tour, you will be able to witness this as well.

Dive into it – Buy their stuff and started to ask their stories

The old woman and her “shop”. I spot her on the 500px.com photowalk last year, sitting at the side walk of Ben Thanh market selling lottery tickets and cigarette. As a local people, I know that these street vendors are not allowed and they have to flee away when local authorities patrolling by.

Saigon Photo Tour - city tour
Old woman on Ben Thanh market – Photo by Tue Nguyen

Again, slowly approaching her, I stopped just a few meters away from her, enjoying my Coke and watching her. Just to make sure that she knew I was there. Just when she had eye contact with me, I smiled and started to reach right in front of her and buy a lottery ticket for her.

The story begun. I kept posing questions to her to make friend with her and only a few minutes later, I know a short story of her life. Next, I offer to take a free picture for her with a promise to process and bring the print back to her. She had became my client.

On the Saigon Photo Tour by vietnamphototrip.com, we will pass this location and I hope she still there earning for her daily life. Why not taking the chance to say “hi” to her? Join us now.

To be continued at part 2 of the Saigon photo tour tips.

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