The only way to get an interesting photo collection is to have interesting shot. And that means candids. People just are not themselves when the camera is looking at them. Without the candid shot then pictures get boring rather quickly. The same party shot, the same side by side half hug shot, the same blowing out candles shots are get to be homogenous after a while. And pretty soon it doesn't matter who it is that is in the picture because the interest is gone. Scrapbooking high lighted that for me after years of complaining that magazine shoots and yearbooks were all the same. Thus the candid shot becomes the holy grail of group or event photography.
The only way to get a good candid is to blend into the scenery. Don't let anyone know that you are there. That requires two things: 1. a good camera with more than enough zoom and 2. practice.
My flat mate and I went to a local event where a fairly famous person was speaking. I don't know if the general public had permission for photos but I was taking them none the less. Since I couldn't get close without spoiling his reactions and the reactions of his closest audience members I had to rely on my zoom lens. 15x on the GE that I bought a few years ago.
from outside the demo tent....
It looks like I am right there in the front row when in reality I am over 35 feet away. No one is worried what my lens will see and I am not obstructing anyone's view. All in all I would say it is a successful technique. It is one for which I will need practice. So I tired it on the cats today. I would have to say that my success with cats is limited. Not that anyone is ever truly successful with a feline.
Stealth is a handy tool to have. You need to have good camouflage. That gets tricky indoors if there are not a lot of decorative pieces. With cats, everything has to be a blind or you don't get the good shots. For things that are that vain, you'd think they would be camera hogs. But no....
I had to go between the fringes of a fleece blanket for these:
|cat at rest in contemplation|
|cat realizes it is being watched|