Urban photography by Brad Evans

– About –

Welcome to Citysnaps….

Citysnaps is my photo blog. It’s about street photography; a very loose and informal documentary style about people in urban environments; capturing the energy and rhythm of the street.

I’m out shooting a lot. Usually solo, but many times shooting with friends as well.

I’ve met a lot of interesting people over the six or so years I’ve been snapping street pix. All are friendly and have a story to tell. Occasionally, I’ll focus on an individual and share some details of their activities and life. And from time to time share stories of some of my encounters on the street.

Most of my street pix are taken in San Francisco, a great city to shoot in. Outside of NYC, there’s no better place for street pix.

Comments, questions, and discussion are always welcome. Please feel free…

Brad

  1. 69 Responses to “– About –”

  2. By Bob J on Oct 21, 2008

    Brad, that pic of the man with the bible on PN is a killer! And they say that street photography is dead? :-)

    Bob J

  3. By Brad on Oct 21, 2008

    Thanks Bob!

    And nice bumping into you again. You’re work street work is outstanding!

  4. By Milan on Dec 4, 2008

    Your photography is really beautiful. The black and white shots are extremely rich and evocative.

  5. By Rudolph on Dec 26, 2008

    Great site. Awesome photos. Enjoyed looking at your photos and reading your account of the ‘getting stopped by the police’ event. :-)

  6. By Noah Stephens on Feb 1, 2009

    Great pictures, Brad. I found you via a review of the Rebel XSi. I just bought that camera, and I’m looking to see how others have applied it.

    Do you still use it? Is that the camera you took the pictures on this site with?

    Keep capture what is interesting about this world we reside in. (I loved the Street Preacher series)

    Noah Stephens
    YIM: Noahstephens123

  7. By Brad on Feb 1, 2009

    Thanx for the nice words!

    Noah, yes, I’m still using the XSi; exclusively. Just about everyday…

  8. By Adrian on Feb 3, 2009

    Hi Brad. Great stuff man,i too found you via a review for the Rebel XSi(just bought one) and i bought it just for fun but after seeing this site, i decided to really put an efort on it, im from Mexico, and my country is so fascinating, anyway thanks man, somehow you work had an impact on me.

    Best regards.

    Adrian.

    P.S wich kind of lenses do you use?

  9. By Brad on Feb 3, 2009

    Thanks for commenting and the nice words, Adrian…

    I use a Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 lens on my XSi. A lot smaller, less weight, and much less expensive compared to Canon’s 17-55 f/2.8 IS.

    Being from Mexico you are probably familiar with photographer Manuel Alvarez Bravo. He died a few years ago at age 100. He’s one of my favorites…

    Good luck with your shooting!

  10. By Riana on Mar 5, 2009

    omg you are so talented!
    i found your blog just now at rebel xsi review.
    i’m a newbie in photography and was confused what to buy, but after seeing your blog, i’m sure now. thx so much! hope you can give me some tricks and tips some time. =]

  11. By Adrian on Mar 5, 2009

    Hi brad, actually, my favorite photographer is Don Manuel , i saw a gallery of he’s work in “El palacio de Bellas Artes” a while ago in my nation’s capital and i got hooked ever since.

    A quick question Brad, there seems to be a debate between shooting the imagen on raw format then use photoshop to transform them on black or white or whatever, what technique do you use??

  12. By Brad on Mar 5, 2009

    Thanx Riana…

    Adrian, I shoot everything in RAW. And then use Adobe Lightroom for processing; including the conversion to black and white. Doing the B&W conversion in post processing from a RAW file is MUCH better (over in-camera B&W capture) and provides a lot of flexibility. Being able to adjust color filtration in the B&W conversion process is key. That lets you accentuate or de-accentuate particular colors in the conversion to B&W.

    Alternately, one could use Adobe Camera RAW to render the RAW file; and then use photoshop for further processing.

    Now that Lightroom 2 offers localized dodge/burn (and other) adjustments, I’m going into photoshop less and less.

  13. By Nico on Mar 9, 2009

    Brad, your work is simply inspiring. Your blog is one I visit everytime, and I always end up revitalized with a new set of eyes, so to speak, that see the remarkable in the mundane things around me (with or without a camera).

    Coincidentally, I have the same set up as you (a 450D and a Tamron 17-50mm f2.8). What do you find to be the most efficient way of shooting with this that enables you to capture the fleeting moments on the street? For example, do you use AF, or MF using hyperfocal distance (for a more point-and-shoot approach)? Thanks!

  14. By Brad on Mar 9, 2009

    Thanx Nico…

    I use AF, though MF/hyperfocal should work fine if large DOF is OK. Many times, though, I like a shallow DOF and keep the aperture large.

  15. By Robin on Mar 14, 2009

    Hi Brad, I think I stumbled across your blog via the dpreview forum. I wanted to say how great I thought the pictures you post up are, I’ve added it to my favorites bar and check what’s new every few days.

    Your sites been an inspiration to my street photography, so much so that I’ve started my own blog to cover what I shoot in london, http://www.shotsfromthesmoke.com.

    I love the post processing you do to your shots to get them to stand out that much more than a straight forward greyscale conversion. Being quite new to photography I’ve only just ‘seen the light’ and I’m starting to put light room to much better use now.

    Shots like yours remind me why I love street photography!

    Robin

    PS feel free to add a link to my blog if you see fit

  16. By Brad on Mar 14, 2009

    Hey Robin, thanx for checking out my blog and commenting – I appreciate it.

    I just took a look at your blog and you’re off to a terrific start – keep shooting and posting! And I added a link on my home page so others can check it out.

  17. By Adrian on Mar 17, 2009

    Hi Brad, great pictures!! thank u so much for all of your input, sadly i just broke my 18-55 lens, but maybe it´s a blessing on disguise as i finally can put my hands on the tamron 17-50mm, i started a flickr account flickr.com/photos/mexisnaps…that´s right the snaps is all you man lol!.. i dont use any software yet, as im still learning, so if you can, check it and give me some feedback please.

    BTW! i heard that there was going to be a Manuel Alvarez Bravo gallery on my city soon, gonna take some pictures and send them to you.

    take care.

    Adrian.

  18. By stefan on Apr 6, 2009

    Brad-
    Came across your site via some comments you made about the Tamron 17-50 at photo.net. Your stuff is fantastic. I’ve been shooting exclusively with the 50 1.8, and am now looking for something wider and the Tamron is at the top of my list. Is all your stuff shot with that lens?

    Many thanks.

    -Stefan

  19. By Brad on Apr 7, 2009

    Thanx, Stefan.

    The majority of pix on the first page of my blog were shot with the Tamron 17-50. The exceptions are photos on these posting dates: 3-14, 3-7, 3-5, 2-12, 2-6, 1-16, and 1-12.

    I’m very pleased with the lens. Especially for portraits…

  20. By paulo on Apr 20, 2009

    hey brad i really dig your photos, I also have a canon xsi and have tried doing some street photography but I wasnt pleased with the results. Do you have any tips for street photography ? I felt quite intrusive with the camera while shooting people. I really like Joel Meyerowitz photographs and i know he shoots with a small Leica film camera so I think in a way its easier to blend into a crowd with that size of equipment. What do ya think?

  21. By paulo on Apr 20, 2009

    I forgot to say (write) that I live in the bay area as well.

  22. By Brad on Apr 20, 2009

    Hey Paulo, thanx…

    On shooting street, it takes time getting used to feeling comfortable snapping people. With respect to blending in, I try and do that by hanging around in plain sight, very open, and being in the middle of everything – like I belong there. IMO, the type/size/brand of camera matters little; it’s how you project to others around you. Leicas are nice cameras, and I have a lot of friends that use them with great results, but honestly, any camera will do.

    To get more comfortable snapping people, you might try some events; where people expect to be photographed.

  23. By paulo on Apr 20, 2009

    thnx man last time i went to the city i started snapping and people gave me the look like i was going to get punched. lol

  24. By Sherrie on May 20, 2009

    You photoblog site is tremendously inspiring–love the gritty black and whites! I have a long way to go. =0)

    Hope all is well with you. Carnival is coming up! Looking forward to seeing more of your photos.

    Take care!

  25. By Brad on May 20, 2009

    Thanx Sherrie…

    Will be shooting Carnaval with some friends; will probably bump into you again. We’ll be in the staging area in the back on Bryant St.

    Also, I checked out your website and your illustrations are AWESOME! Would love to buy a t-shirt with one of your illustrations on it.

    Emailed you a photo from Sunday’s B2B…

  26. By Seth on Jun 6, 2009

    Hi Brad,

    I am a photography enthusiast in New York and i find your blog to be very inspirational. So much so, that I started one of my own!

    I love your skills with black and white conversion!

    Best,

    Seth

  27. By rich t on Jun 14, 2009

    Great blog, saw u on PN.

    Look forward to your opinion on the LX3. I’ve had one since late 08 and am very pleased with the results.

  28. By LeNg on Jun 16, 2009

    Hey Brad,
    Which other posted pics were taken with LX3? I’m contemplating to get either a 450D or LX3. Still comparing the two…

  29. By Brad on Jun 16, 2009

    LeNg, so far I’ve only posted a few pix snapped with the LX3.

    Two here: http://www.citysnaps.net/blog/?p=972

    And one here: http://www.citysnaps.net/blog/?p=1053

    As I post LX3 pix, I’ll indicate that they’re from that cam. Also, perhaps within the next week, I’ll write a bit about my experiences with both, comparing each cam’s strong and weak points.

    I can say this though right now, as good as the LX3 is for a take-around cam, the XSi is much better with respect to AF speed, easy framing (as it has a viewfinder), and low noise at high ISO settings. OTOH, the LX3 still does a pretty good job for when you don’t want to take a big camera with you.

  30. By ted pushinsky on Jul 11, 2009

    thanks for mentioning the shows at the exposure gallery and 111 minna

  31. By Brad on Jul 12, 2009

    You’re welcome Ted. It was great hearing your talk that night!

  32. By Edgar on Sep 6, 2009

    Hello, I came upon your site through a Vespa link. I love all the photos and blogs. Glad to have come upon this site. Get a Vespa, they are are a lot of fun and economic transport. I got one. I am also a photographer, recently rediscovered my love of Polaroids.

    One minor correction, Fangio was from Argentina.

    Chau!

  33. By Michael Axel on Sep 11, 2009

    Brad, I love your site, your blogs, and your fantastic images. I bump into you on Pnet from time to time. Your work is fantastic! Axel

  34. By Danelle on Sep 18, 2009

    Hi Brad! Wow, love the photos!!! They are really something!!!
    Was nice meeting you the other day, come by again, I’ll be out in the streets doing more promos next week, we’re usually on Davis&Sacramento or Market&4th where we met. Cheers from kAzAk!!

  35. By Kevin Z on Oct 27, 2009

    Brad, You have a fantastic eye for street photography and you keep your work really relevant. I love to see that you’re engaging your subjects rather than just snapping away. I live in & around the Bay Area and I end up in SF a bunch. Hit me up if you’re out and about, I’d love to pick your brain.

    ~Kevin.
    zappow at gmail dot com.

  36. By Kurt Holter on Nov 22, 2009

    Great work. You combine excellent technique with a rare ability to approach people and draw out their personalities through your images.

  37. By Brad on Nov 22, 2009

    Just wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone that has stopped by here and left nice comments. I really do appreciate it!

  38. By Keith Rowell on Nov 26, 2009

    You’re work is extraordinary! I just lost a couple of hours looking through it :)

    Would love to know how your City Snaps magazine on MagCloud is going. Has it been a worthwhile process?

    Cheers

    Keith

  39. By Christina on Dec 29, 2009

    I just wanted to say that I am really inspired by your blog. I am a student of photography at Hollins University in Virginia and I love to shoot urban decay. While I live in a small city, I dream of coming to New York to find all the magic that is awaiting me there. I recieved your first edition of Citysnaps for Christmas and I eagerly await the next edition. All the best!

  40. By Christina on Dec 29, 2009

    and I am posting this comment to give you my correct email as I made a typo in my first post :)

  41. By Brad on Dec 29, 2009

    Hey Christina… Thanks for the nice words – I really appreciate it. Also, thanks for checking out my mag. Yeah, I need to get on another one. Good luck at U of Virginia and shooting! And NYC is amazing for photos – just about everywhere you go…

  42. By Christina on Jan 3, 2010

    For some reason I always think that you are shooting in New York, but you are not. You are in California. Sorry for the misunderstanding :) I have an aunt who lives in San Francisco and I also dream of going out there to shoot.

  43. By Brian Moore on Jan 12, 2010

    Great shots Brad. Love the use of B&W since that where I started. Coming to SF for a few days in 2010 and you are giving me lots of inspiration

  44. By Brad on Jan 14, 2010

    Thanks Brian! There’s a lot to see and snap in SF. Shoot me an email before you go and I’ll send some tips/ideas…

  45. By Joe on Jan 16, 2010

    Hi Brad, I am thinking of purchasing an Xsi but have heard some problems with its AF. Do you have any input to this?

  46. By Brad on Jan 16, 2010

    Hi Joe… I’ve heard some claims about that in the distant past, but have had no issues with mine over the year and a half that I’ve owned it.

    I suspect some of the claims on the net back then may have been new-user cockpit error. And maybe a few from legitimate early first-run manufacturing issues. What you don’t hear about are the tons of people happy with the camera. Also, as it’s an “entry level” model, one can’t have expectations that it’s AF is at the same level of Canon’s more expensive camera’s in terms of AF speed.

    But… If your interest is in street photography, it’s a great cam and it’s AF is well-matched to that purpose. Right now the XSi is $485 on Amazon, a great price…

  47. By Charlie (aka. big Papa) on Jan 19, 2010

    Hey Brad, I came upon your site through a friend, we’re both wanting to become better photographers. Now I’m willing to drive into the city just to practice your tips and lens selection, I’m new to photography but love taking pictures in different settings (outside the box).I just add your site to my favorite, thanks again for the help and ideas.. Later

  48. By steven leitch on Feb 10, 2010

    Brad, I’m just curious as to your background. I knew a Brad Evans when we lived in Florida in the 60s. Both our fathers were in the Navy and we lived in Panama City, Florida. He was a budding artist then as a boy and is supposed to be living in the San Francisco area. Might you be the same? thanks. Oh by-the-way, I chose my career in photography as well. I work for a major medical center and provide the center with photographic services, medical as well as promotional and public affairs.

  49. By Joe on Feb 28, 2010

    My Flickr page.

    You’ve made some wonderful images here. Enjoy some of my interpretations of NYC.

    Joe.

  50. By Joe on Feb 28, 2010

    My Flickr page.

    You’ve made some wonderful images here. Enjoy some of my interpretations of NYC.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/33433234@N07/

    Joe.

  51. By Steve on May 29, 2010

    Brad, great work especially the B&W. Keep up the good work. I shoot film and might go digital. Did you write a review of the Rebel XSi ? Please drop me an e-mail of the review www site if you have time.

    Steve

  52. By clodagh on Oct 11, 2010

    well, I was very unsuccessful at being a presence on photo.net but if you are wondering what I have been up since my very numerous bannings you can check me out on Flickr
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lotsapix/sets/

  53. By Elmira Karimova on Oct 17, 2010

    Hi Brad! Your pictures are just awesome!

  54. By Dana on Oct 28, 2010

    Hi Brad,

    I have just moved to San Francisco from the Boston area. I shoot film and digital but am most fond of my Canon A-1 and my collection of early 20th century box cameras (which I use). Don’t have a darkroom set up right now, but am looking forward to checking out Rayko … I saw you on photo.net, where I post sometimes (APUG too). Keep up the excellent work!

  55. By JK on Dec 3, 2010

    Brad, I want you to know how much I appreciate the seriousness and energy, perhaps the “morality” of your posts and photos (which add up to a startling kind of beauty).

    I’ve been banned for a while from P.N for what I hope are similarly serious and energetic posts, though of course are my own and not the same as yours. I may choose not to post again in P.N, but I’ll visit occasionally and watch for your posts.

    I admire this blog tremendously, both the photos and the spirit in which you’ve written. Here I’ll simply mention “Ted,” a strong and respectful portrait.

    The respect you show for your subjects shines through. Congratulations.

    John Kelly

  56. By Brad E on Dec 4, 2010

    John, thank you very much for stopping by and writing. I appreciate it!

  57. By Liza Heider on Dec 9, 2010

    Hi Brad,

    I’ve most recently discovered your work via The Tender Blog. Your work is truly inspiring, sensitive and very beautifully done.

    Yours, a fellow Tenderloinian

    Liza Heider

  58. By Brad E on Dec 13, 2010

    Thanks Liza!

  59. By liz cousins on Feb 20, 2011

    Do you still use the tamron 17-50 lens? im wondering if it does well in low lighting? I’ve been doing indoor pictures on newborns/families and im wondering if that would be a good lens for it? Im loving looking through your pictures!

  60. By Brad E on Feb 24, 2011

    Thanx, Liz. Sent ya an email regarding the Tamron. In summary, it’s a great lens…

  61. By Daniel on Mar 28, 2011

    Hi, Brad.
    Your photoblog is real refreshment. Inspiring, authentic look at the people around us… my favorite category.
    Keep up with your work, I’ll be watching you :-)

  62. By Anne M. on Aug 24, 2011

    Brad,

    Love your All-City–All the Time. Beautiful and inspiring. Just beginning to photograph, your work is right up my alley.

    Anne

  63. By Brad E on Aug 24, 2011

    Anne, thank you much! And happy snapz!

  64. By Traunza A on Oct 29, 2012

    Brad,
    Stumbled across your website while looking for some pics for a Prezi I’m making. You are an amazing photographer–your pictures are stunning. I just returned from Morocco where many photographers go, but I love that you’ve found such magic and beauty in our own backyard. Keep it up, and I’ll be looking for your exhibits around the Bay.

    Traunza

  65. By Kam on Jan 24, 2013

    Such an exceptional talent! Clearly it’s not about the camera or lens but the way you interact with your subjects. Your portraits are filled with warmth and respect. Wish I could spend a day watching you work. All the best to you.

  66. By Brad E on Feb 2, 2013

    Thanks Kam, appreciate your thoughts!

  67. By Steve on Jul 2, 2013

    Brad: I came across your web site via a preview.com thread about street photography. You posted there and provided a link to your site. I’m writing simply to tell you how impressed I am with your sense of place, your exceptional eye, your equally exceptional processing.

    When I first started out some many, many years ago, I had the opportunity to present my beginner’s portfolio to a gallery owner in Canada. She looked through the work slowly, then looked up at me and said, “Just keep shooting.” It was the best advice I could have received, and I use the same words to you. You will, over time, build a body of work that will have no equal. Best to you. (I use an xsi as well.)

  68. By Mark L on Nov 11, 2013

    Hi I’m Mark from Oz…got here by happy accident and hope to visit often. I usually do beauty/fashion portraiture but have been LURED out onto the streets by…God knows what, the adventure? The romance? Dunno. But I am finding it tricky, maybe I’m just not “seeing” it yet? With my regular stuff I’m in control but not OUT THERE. So I’ll keep plugging on. Like an old plough-horse. Or something. Whatever. Cheers…Mark in Oz ;-)

  69. By Christopher on Mar 28, 2014

    I don’t recall how I got here, but I really do love your pictures. I used to live in L.A., but for the past 10 years have been in North Dakota … your pictures help me keep sane while stuck living in these little towns – Thanks :)

  70. By Barry on Jan 31, 2015

    Hey Brad, just gotta tell you that I enjoy looking at your photos as much as any photographer I know. Just lovely, lively and beauty with light.

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