Street Photography in Berlin City

Below are 10 street photography shots in Berlin city that I took over the last two or three years. Each one expresses a moment in time, a moment in the life of a busy city.

When I do street photography, I tend to look for unusual moments, or those moments that I believe many people pass by without noticing.

The street shot below is in Mehringdamm, Berlin.

It’s early spring time and people are out and about, but still wrapped up in their winter clothes. But, if the sun’s out in Berlin, then the people come out and grab a few of the rays – you never know when it’ll be back to spread its light again.

Street Photography by Sean P. Durham, Berlin, 2021, copyrighted

Above; Mehringdamm, Berlin. Sunlight catches golden hair in the morning spring time.

Group of three people on Bebel Platz in Berlin. Street Photography by Sean P. Durham, Berlin, 2021, copyrighted

Above; I was hanging around on Bebel Platz, in Mitte, Berlin. The sun was shining, and the shadows were inching their way across the platz.

I tried several shots until I saw this small group of people stop and look down at the square hole in the ground; a memorial of the place where the Nazis burned books during the 1930s.

Not all street photos, or any photo for that matter, are sensational or staggering in their visual content. many good shots contain a peaceful and modest rhythm of light and shadow that is simply pleasing to the eye. The backdrop in this photo is the Schloss wall with its classical architecture, columns as relief in the walls, and beige colour.

The three figures work well as a point of interest. The taller man stands with his back to the camera, white hat and dark top the splits the figure with a lighter band around the middle, and dark long-shorts.

The woman stands close but separates herself by looking skywards, and seems to be interested in something completely different than the other two men.

The three figures are well comp0osed but stand within a large composition, which is not always easy to pull off.

It works in a simple way, the eye is always drawn back to the group for further inspection. The black and white finish to the photo makes it easier to follow the lines throughout without becoming confused by unnecessary colours.

Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, a happy accident in photography

Brandenburg Gate is a favourite spot for photographers and tourists. There is always something happening in the area. People love to stop and look at the magnificent structure and its mysterious lines, and architectural finesse.

Based on the acropolis in Greece, it represents the freedom and peace in a city after years of war.

The shot above is one of those street photos that occurred on a day when I wanted to at least get a couple of shots in before the light faded.

It’s an interesting composition of a large group of people on the street in front of Brandenburg Gate. I love this shot. The way it gives the eye a feast of figures and lines, angles and tones to look at.

The evening was coming, and the sky darkening quickly. The light reflected on the metal railings, and the odd white short, or light coloured trousers allowed me to pick up the folds and creases hit by the evening light.

I panned around the platz with my lens, a Sigma 17-50 mm. Canon Rebel camera – nice a light for strolling around with.

When I noticed the two men in front of me, one posing for a shot, the other preparing to take a shot, I noticed the light hitting his face. I knew it was a shot, so I trembled, adjusted angle, framed the lit face and made sure that the man sitting against the stacked barriers was in the shot, I took it and hoped it would turn out well.

It’s interesting, intriguing and makes me happy that I hit the button at the right time.

Berlin Kreuzberg,Sean P. Durham, Berlin, 2021, copyrighted

Above; two Kreuzberg people. I was passing, they were leaning, so I quickly snapped a street photograph. Works well enough to create interest. When people hang about together on the street they either engage and talk avidly, or they drift and talk, pan around with their eyes, think, look at the ground and general disengage from each other. This creates an atmosphere of “rest”, a feeling that they are in their own worlds, but yet together.

Two women having lunch in Bergmann strasse, Berlin, Kreuzberg. Street Photography, Berlin 2021, Sean P. Durham, Copyrighted

Bergmannstrasse, two women having lunch together. I intentionally made this street shot darker in the background, it helps to accentuate the two main figures. They are framed by dark shadows coming from doorways, the ground and the window.

Street Photography by Sean P. Durham,Yorck Strasse, Berlin. Berlin, 2021, copyrighted

Yorck Strasse, Berlin. Man walking under the Yorckstrasse S-Bahn Bridge. This is a favourite area for some street photographers. The bridges offer a composition of shadows and light, angled shadows that cast themselves across the bright colours of graffiti and colourful cars passing under the bridges.

The street photo above, under the bridge, the man is in a hurry and marches along the road at a brisk pace. His leather jacket looks much too heavy and warm for a sunny day. I like the feeling of haste in the photo and believe it is enhanced through his leather jacket, long pace, and red face – as if he’s huffing and puffing his way along the road.

Scene of a building in Berlin, Mitte.
Street Photography by Sean P. Durham, Berlin, 2021, copyrighted

Regierungs Viertel Berlin, Mitte. This is the side of a government building in the old east side of Berlin. I don’t go there too often, but if the sun is shining it can pull up some interesting angles and shapes for street photography in Berlin.

Woman alone during the pandemic times on a street in Bergmannkiez, Berlin; Sean P. Durham, Berlin, 2020 Copyright
Alone in Berlin 2020 (Pandemic Times)
Two people walking together in Berlin, Sean P. Durham, Street Photography in Berlin, 2020, copyright
Two people walking alone in Bergmannkiez Berlin 2020