On a bus in Bolivia: Photographing locals

Something I’m always torn about when traveling is whether or not to take pictures of the locals. I felt comfortable taking this picture because I was sitting on a bus. But does that make it okay?

I’ve seen tourists practically shove their cameras into the faces of those they want to take pictures of with zero shame.

My thought process is the following: wow, this person is wearing something beautiful, or has a curious look on their face, or is unintentionally posed in an interesting way, it makes me want to take their picture. But do I have this compulsion because they’re ‘different’ than me? How would I feel if foreigners came to my city and were constantly taking my picture?

That said, it’s true that professional (and amateur) photographers can take beautiful photos of people around the world that don’t come across as cheap or invasive. But when a tourist does it out of pure curiosity, something just feels off.

Below is a photo I took in Marrakech.

I’d love to hear the thoughts of fellow travellers.

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