Out and about in Galway

Like many of you, we often head away for a night or two. A staycation sort of thing. Although Galway is only 90 minutes away and we’ve been there many times, we never tire of it. It’s a lovely city to wander around.
It’s full of characters from all over the world and I believe that the pedestrianisation of it contributes to the relaxed atmosphere. Of course, the camera always comes along too!

Street photography was never really my thing but this year, I’ve done quite a bit of it. Now, I know some will say that these aren’t strictly “street”, and you’d probably be right. They are more people shots and that’s another thing I’ve discovered this year – I like to shoot people.
The above shot was easy. These buskers were obviously enjoying themselves and had attracted a large crowd. But I still got spotted by the accordion player and the double bass player.

Girl by John Mee Photography
Shooting people on the street takes quite a bit effort. You want to capture them as they go about their business, hoping that they don’t spot you. If they do, it can spoil the intended shot. Of course sometimes, it can make the shot.
In Galway, I discovered just how hard it is to grab some sneaky shots of people on the street. However, the girl with the golden hair was easy to capture, especially as she had her back to me and her boyfriend was playing on his phone! 🙂

Galway Street musicians by John Mee Photography

You’d imagine that it would be easier to blend in as it gets dark. The day wore on and evening descended. I have a rule – if they are wearing a hat, shoot them. 🙂
Most of the street musicians were packing up their gear. I watched these guys for a short while. One of them wore a hat. Nobody spotted me during this shoot, except for that kid in the blue coat!

Lady on a Galway street by John Mee photography

And here’s another hat/cap. There’s always a part of me that feels guilty shooting people on the street. I feel like I’m invading their privacy. This was true of the above shot as this lady gestured negatively to me after I snapped this.
However, my only wish was to record the beautiful diversity of life on the Galway streets. (That’s my justification anyway)

Reading the menu by John Mee Photography

No matter how cold or wet it is, Galway restaurants always offer customers the chance to dine al fresco. Tourists can be frequently seen gasping at the prices. That had better be rucksacks full of money … or food. 🙂 I didn’t get spotted taking this shot.

Galway doorman by John Mee Photography

This guy had a great profile but by the time I had raised the camera to my eye, he spotted me. Still, he was happy enough for me to take his shot and smiled back. The lady inside the restaurant was less impressed.

Street talk by John Mee Photography

Let’s face it … if you have a broad rimmed hat, then photographers are definitely going to shoot you. The light was pretty low now and I had to keep pushing the ISO up.
For any photographers reading this, the settings for this shot are 1/250th of a second, F2.8 and ISO 1000. For everyone else, it was freezing and I fancied a pint. And yea, I got spotted again … by the chap on the left.

Galway street by John Mee Photography
It’s getting very dark now and people are beginning to head home and back to their hotels. I decide to finish up too. I wonder if I’ve got any shots that capture the spirit of Galway, its residents and the people who visit.
But wait. To my left, I spot one more photographic opportunity. It’s a lady in an awesome hat and a matching coat. I snapped her quickly and yep, she spotted me too. But I like the eye contact. I wanted to ask her if I could shoot her again in that outfit, but I’m not that brave. This is something I’ll have to address in future!

Lady in Galway by John Mee Photography

I’m hoping to get back to Galway on Sunday for the Christmas market. If you’re about, be sure to wear a hat. Thanks for reading this far. Feel free to share or comment.

Pretty girl in the Galway street by John Mee Photography

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  1. Cindy Reply

    The lady with the negative gesture is Nora Ward, a Galway fixture. She’s abrasive and weird and irritating and incomprehensible. And everyone knows her.

    I love your busker shots, and the really colourful one of Quay Street.

  2. Eduard Antoniu Reply

    The gear packing buskers: Christ lookalike Jeremy (originally from Dublin, best tin whistle player), Daniel (with hat, originally from Chishinau, Moldova, on violin), Chris Literaly withhis back on u, acgtr). In the “spotted by chap on the left” pic it is possible that, the hatted guy w/ leather bag & gloves may have hidden me playing my whistles across from the Mac Eochagain Galway Woolen Market (orange entrance).

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