The Uncertainty Moment

If you’re a photographer, especially a street or documentary photographer, you’re most probably know what I am talking about.

For me, the moment that precedes the press of the shutter release follow the below scenario:

  • Noticing an interesting scene
  • Gauging distance to the subject/scene
  • Deciding if its appropriate or not to take the photo (or you don’t ever consider this)
  • Raising the camera to look through the viewfinder (or composing on the rear screen)
  • Re-composing/focusing/waiting for the scene to develop further.
  • Pressing the shutter (or not)

All of the above can take anywhere form a split second up to several seconds. And even though I may glimpse the scene as the shutter snaps, I don’t know if I actually captured the (decisive) moment or not (and whether I captured something else, maybe even more promising than I originally thought). I call it the Uncertainty Moment.

In this Uncertainty Moment, my inner world of imagination, vision and composition view is trying to align with the continuously flowing and uncontrollable external world so that they meet in an harmonized way (at least as I view it). At this moment time feels like it is being stretched and my whole consciousness is solely focused on the scene unravelling in front of me. Many times I feel that a full second stretches to 5 or even more as my brain already determines what will be the best outcome while my feet and hands try to keep up with its commands. In this moment many times I find myself hoping that something will happen (or wont happen) so that I can get closer/compose better/switch to different settings or whatever is needed.

I’ve just realized that this moment is one of key drivers for my passion practicing photography, especially street photography.


How about you? Do you feel the same? Do you have any similar experiences?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this:
close-alt close collapse comment ellipsis expand gallery heart lock menu next pinned previous reply search share star