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Thread: Trying something new

  1. #1
    DH59's Avatar
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    Trying something new

    I am off to Lincoln on Friday to see if I can get some shots of the Christmas Market, both day and night shots. It will be a matter of trial and error with the exposure and the use of flash.

    However, my main question is whether I might get stopped for taking photos. I will probably take my tripod, so if the tripod-police do show up, am I within my rights to take images of the stalls and the general street scenes? I presume it's all set up on the public thoroughfares so I should be OK, but you never know with some of the jobsworths out there. I've read so many tales of photographers being stopped.

  2. #2
    mythlady's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    I don't know what the rules are in England, but in the US I don't think you'd be stopped for using a tripod in a public place, except in certain kinds of places. I was recently with a class that was kicked out of the Rodin Sculpture Garden at Stanford, for using tripods, even though we were obviously a class and not professional photographers wanting to make money off of shooting their sculptures.

    The other issue is if you're creating a roadblock in a crowded venue by using the tripod. I often go to flower society shows to take pictures, and no one has ever questioned me -- I use a monopod in those environments because it's much less obtrusive and doesn't get in the way of people trying to pass by in close quarters.

  3. #3

    Re: Trying something new

    OK....

    Generally, there is nothing in UK law to prevent you from taking ordinary shots in a public place, and that includes taking shots of people (including kids). Public opinion may differ from this. There is nothing to prevent you from taking shots of a private place, provided you are shooting from a public place.

    Using a tripod is a bit tricky. No law against it, but you may be done for obstruction if it's a busy area. If it's very busy, a monopod might be better. If you are not insured and someone trips over your tripod, you may have a problem. I have public liability insurance which is included in my camera gear insurance. http://www.eandl.co.uk/leisure-and-l...mera-insurance

    It's worth dispelling a few myths. Shopping malls are normally private spaces, and they can ask you to sling your hook. I have been thrown out of several, but I consider being thrown out of anywhere as Brownie Points. Railway stations are private places in the UK, and you are best to check on photographic rights.

    You might find this useful, it only applies to the UK. The UK rights guide is worth reading

    http://www.sirimo.co.uk/category/ukpr/

  4. #4
    The Blue Boy's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    Totally agree with Rob. Christmas markets can be very busy places. Had a flickrmeet on Sunday around the German market here in Manchester and attempting to use a tripod would have been mad! You say your after some night shots? I'd suggest a fast lens for the whole day. Get some good candid shots of people too!

    Rob, one of the guys I met up with on sunday is a rail nut. He swears blind that you are allowed to take photos in stations as long as you don't use a tripod or flash. Here's the link to his stream on flickr,

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jelltecks/

    but as usual not all station staff are aware of company policy.

    Edit; Just realised that that is the same insurance company I've just started using. Are they any good Rob? PM me.
    Last edited by The Blue Boy; 30th November 2010 at 06:42 PM. Reason: Missed something obvious as usual. :))

  5. #5
    DH59's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    Thanks for the replies.

    I had wondered about the tripod being a bit of a hazard. I would probably set it up in a less busy area, or play it safe and take the monopod. I did actually set up public liability insurance with my gear policy, as I have done a few craft fairs where it was required.

    I've checked out the sirimo uk rights website before - I will have to study the text in more detail to see if anything pertains to this situation so that I can be prepared should I get stopped. I presume the stallholders will be used to having photos taken and so this may not be a problem.

    Oh well. Should be fun.

  6. #6
    DH59's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    Well, I have a feeling the trip might now be off!! There's a bit of white stuff on the land.

  7. #7
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    Quote Originally Posted by The Blue Boy View Post
    Totally agree with Rob. Christmas markets can be very busy places. Had a flickrmeet on Sunday around the German market here in Manchester and attempting to use a tripod would have been mad! You say your after some night shots? I'd suggest a fast lens for the whole day. Get some good candid shots of people too!

    Rob, one of the guys I met up with on sunday is a rail nut. He swears blind that you are allowed to take photos in stations as long as you don't use a tripod or flash. Here's the link to his stream on flickr,

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jelltecks/

    but as usual not all station staff are aware of company policy.

    Edit; Just realised that that is the same insurance company I've just started using. Are they any good Rob? PM me.
    Photography
    You can take photographs at stations provided you do not sell them. However, you are not allowed to take photographs of security related equipment, such as CCTV cameras.

    Flash photography on platforms is not allowed at any time. It can distract train drivers & train despatch staff and so is potentially very dangerous.

    Tripod legs must be kept away from platform edges and behind the yellow lines. On busy stations, you may not be allowed to use a tripod because it could be a dangerous obstruction to passengers.
    http://www.networkrail.co.uk/aspx/777.aspx#photography

    I suspect it will be a good idea to check the network and print to show Mr Iam Best.

  8. #8
    DH59's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    If anyone else was thinking about the Christmas market in Lincoln, apparently it's now cancelled altogether. Not that we were going - we made a decision that it would be unwise in these conditions.

  9. #9
    DH59's Avatar
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    Re: Trying something new

    Thought I'd post an update on this. As I mentioned, the Lincoln market was cancelled, but as I was at a portrait workshop in Leeds yesterday, I thought we'd make a day of it and visit the Christmas market in Leeds centre.

    I managed to wander round earlier in the afternoon and grab a few shots, using my monopod, although I did see a security man approach a Chinese lad with a DSLR and take him into a compound. He later emerged clutching a piece of paper.

    We then had a wander around the city centre and returned to the market at dusk. I snapped away merrily until about half an hour later I was approached by a security man asking if I had a permit. I replied that I didn't, as I assumed that the area was public thoroughfare. He said it was normally, but that when an event is taking place it is classed as 'licenced'.

    His main reasoning was that I had a 'professional' camera (it's a 40D), and when I said that I was not a professional photographer he said that it didn't matter, as long as I had a professional camera I needed a permit (obviously what the Chinese lad had picked up earlier) and he handed me a Leeds City Council business card where I could enquire about obtaining one in future. He then muttered something about being careful 'in this day and age', which I did not pursue. I agreed not to take any more images and we left shortly afterwards.

    I don't know whether he refrained from becoming more officious when he spotted that I was a female (my husband was standing slightly in front of me and would have probably blocked his view until he was right by me) and probably older than him, but it was a fairly friendly exchange. I will be looking into this further with the council, but I have seen shots taken at other markets and wonder if it's just a question of photographers not getting spotted, or whether other markets have different rules depending on the area they're operating in. It appears that some markets are by independent organisers, whereas this one is organised by the council - perhaps that's the issue.

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