This image is from an ongoing collection of work on the sea anglers who use Chesil Beach is Dorset

It’s been a few weeks since my last post, due to unforeseen circumstances. Anyway I’m back now. And I’m getting back on with my fishermen of Chesil Beach project.

I went out over the weekend and found a couple of hardy lads who were more than willing to have their pictures taken, which has prompted me to write this blog.

I’m often asked how I go about finding subjects as many photographers are either too shy to ask a stranger or don’t know who to approach. I can’t really answer the first point as every subject and photographer is different, but as to the subject choice, maybe I can help a little.

Take my fishermen project as a case in point. On the beach over the weekend were the usual selection of people. Holiday makers, youngsters, older men, British nationals and foreigners. It was potentially a target rich environment. But here’s the thing. In the UK, there’s a lot of misconceptions about photographers. Many members of the public think they cannot be photographed without permission, which is wrong as long as the photographer is on public land.

Others think a photographer should pay for the privilege of photographing them, again false. But I’ve pretty much had my fill of explaining all this to people so I choose my subjects carefully.

And surprisingly I tend to opt for the people others avoid. The more interesting people, the ones with character and lived in faces. They tend, in my opinion, to be friendlier and open to being photographed.

I get it wrong sometimes, but more often then not, I’m rewarded with a few minutes to get the shot I came for.

I often avoid the young pretty things, or people who look grumpy. So  next time you are out, look around and mentally picture yourself asking everyone you pass to take their picture. See if you can gauge an accurate response. Then try it for real. You may be surprised who says yes and who says no.

Be friendly, be honest (why do you want to take their picture) and above all be polite if they turn you down. It’s their right to do so.