Street Skaters
An Urban Photography Project

Street skaters, skateboarders, roller bladders, every city has them and even if you find them mildly irritating, like I do I must admit, they do bring certain areas of the city alive.

In London there is a certain place under the National Theatre on the south bank of the Thames where they all gather with their boards to do tricks. The whole area is covered in Graffiti which has been allowed to remain as the area has turned into a tourist attraction in it's own right. It is a perfect place for skater photos if you are ever in the area.

Where ever you come across street skaters of any description you will also come across unique photo opportunities. How you approach this project will very much depend on your own confidence and style.

You may prefer to stand back and observe from a distance or you may want to get the cooperation of the skaters. Both will offer their own perspective on capturing the scene with photography.

As a photographer you will have the option of freezing the action or of using slow shutter speed to blur the images indicating the speed and motion of the activity.

You may want to do some close up work of the street skaters and their boards or you may want to place the activity within a larger urban scene.

Exploring all these options will open up your creativity and help you to produce some amazing street photography.

Street Skater Project Examples

Street Skaters picture by Precious Khyatt

This first picture by Precious khyatt shows a scene where skaters have been placed in a larger scene to illustrate the place of the activity within the wider urban environment.

The picture is shown in a brown tone that gives it a very nostalgic feel, of lost youth or of times gone by.

The composition is simple and the bright natural light has been used to great effect to create dark shadows and shapes.

Street Skaters picture by TenaciousR

Next we have an image by TenaciousR which is a close up of a skaters feet and board. The choice of a board with imagery on it was good to add some more interest to the photo.

The feet and the board are both in sharp focus leaving the background, which is uninteresting anyway, out of focus.

A good use of depth of field that concentrates the viewer on the main subject, without any unnecessary distractions.

I like the cropping of the image too, the feet look like they are about to walk out of frame and you don't need to see the whole board to know what it is.

Street Skaters picture by Steve Weaver

This next shot by Steve Weaver is an excellent shot that illustrates great timing and an eye for form and symmetry. Look at how all the pairs of legs seem to mirror each other.

The action has been frozen well too with only a hint of movement. Good use of depth of field has been used also, with the main two skaters in focus but with a nice slightly blurred background.

Taking this picture would have required some patience and also a low shooting angle. It shows how with a little patience and perhaps persistence, a great shot can be achieved.


Street Skaters picture by Todd Huffman

Lastly this picture by Todd Huffman shows a street skater in action. It was taken on the south bank (mentioned above) and as you can see it is covered in graffiti, which is the perfect setting to capture the real urban feel of this sport.

Again clicking the shutter just at the right time and having a fast speed setting would have been required to capture this defining moment in this particular jump.

The background has been kept in focus to allow the viewer to experience the setting for this skater and shows an aspect of youth culture and street life in this area.