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Firing Blind With Johnny Stiletto

Street photographer Johnny Stiletto captured the 1980s London scene with his 35mm camera. With his keen eye for detail, he was able to take some satirical and candid photos while firing blind.

image © Johnny Stiletto via Flavorwire

Anonymous street photographer Johnny Stiletto has taken over 100,000 photos on the streets of London. This project started out when he decided to create a photo diary in 1980. Armed with his 35mm camera, he would roam the streets of London and shoot whatever he saw. His photos show the lives of everyday people and some famous ones including Francis Bacon and Mick Jagger.

Francis Bacon image © Johnny Stiletto via Flavorwire
Francis Bacon image © Johnny Stiletto via Flavorwire

For street photography, firing blind definitely pays off. This was how he was able to capture candid shots of his subjects. Just like one of the 10 Golden Rules, Johnny Stiletto shot from the hip. He would avoid looking through the camera and mostly did guess work with the exposures and focus to avoid drawing attention while he was shooting. Over time, he was able to refine his techniques.

“I think if you really want to take street photographs seriously you need to be as anonymous as possible. I’m like a cheap meal, I slip through people’s lives without being noticed, and that’s how I think it ought to be.” – Johnny Stiletto

160 of Jonny Stiletto’s images can now be seen in his book Vintage 80s – London Street Photography. He also has another book entitled Shots from the Hip.

written by jeanmendoza

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