Fun on Fremont Street in Las Vegas!

Fun on Fremont Street in Las Vegas!

There is nothing quite like getting out a couple of times a year to go to place with amazing people watching opportunities. Over the weekend during the Valley of Fire meet a few of us took the 3 mile drive from our house to Fremont Street in Las Vegas to do some people watching and snap a few photos. We went out one night and stayed for a short time and while we mainly walked around and experienced the lights, the sound, the energy and the people we also snapped a few shots here and there over the course of an hour or so.

As I walked around I told myself I wanted to take only TWELVE images during the hour, so I walked and tried my best to stick to that plan but the problem was I was so busy laughing at the antics of the party goers in the street that many times I forgot that I was there to take some photos!

I shot with the Olympus E-M1 and 25 1.8 along with the Panasonic 25 1.4. One walk down Fremont street with the Olympus lens and the walk back with the Panasonic. At the end of the day, both lenses did just fine and I would be 100% happy with either though the Panasonic does indeed have more micro contrast and a slightly sharper image. In other words, it is still the overall best 25mm lens for the Micro 4/3 system by a slight margin. 

After the hour walk I ended up with 16 shots, four more than the limit I tried to set but that was because I just was not finding my groove due to way too much visual overload! Some of the other guys had the same problem. I ended up liking 12 of shots and threw away 4 of them. Nothing special but it sure was a very VISUAL hour 🙂 I decided to convert them all with VSCO to B&W so the grain you see is from the filters.

If anyone here ever finds themselves in Las Vegas then I urge you to take a little adventure off of the strip to Fremont Street..but be prepared for some wild times, especially on weekends!

Click on the images for larger versions!

On Fremont Street people are partying everywhere..drinking, dancing, street performers and a huge mix of people from all over the world. 


A street performer who was amazingly good. I squatted down to his level and shot between some guys legs for this shot taken with the Olympus 25. When shooting someone down below you, it is usually best to get down to their level for the image.


More street performers. On Fremont if you see anyone dressed up that means you can get a photo with them but they WILL want a few bucks for this, so be prepared to pay!


There are always loads of cameras and photos being taken so this is one destination where you do not have to be afraid to take the shot..


There are even photo opps OFF of Frenont. This was a burger truck called “FUKU” with the slogan of “Get Lucky”. After taking a shot of the full truck I decided to get close and get the attention of the girl working the truck. When she looked, I snapped. 


Even with all of the booze, the half naked women and men, the strip clubs and the craziness there are people of ALL ages who come to see the spectacle. From young to old..


This guy who dresses as cupid yells out sexual comments to anyone walking buy and he has been on Fremont for a long time now..get your picture with this scary looking cupid and you will get to put a couple of dollars in his diaper.



The last shot I took that night  – the crowd and a dancer in the background who dances on a bar to attract people to buy some alcohol



  1. Did you consider using a less wide or telephoto lens? That would have kept you at distance and enabled tighter framing.

    It would be great if you could post a couple in colour, AWB be damned! Of course the colour is going to be funky from all the lights but it just seems that Vegas glitz deserves colour treatment.
    A little while ago a Daily Inspiration was from Times Square shot in colour on a Leica M. I thought it was great, even though some people tore into it due to funky colours, ignoring the fact that there were neon lights all over the place!

    Best regards

  2. Wish I could have made this trip with you guys. But I’m flying out to Vegas tomorrow and shooting in Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park on Thursday. I’ll be hitting Fremont Street on Thursday night though. Bringing my OM-D E-M1 with the 12-40mm f/2.8.

  3. Mean this as a constructive criticism, but with the exception of the vertical “Cupid” shot, these all feel a bit too loose to me, which is surprising given I usually find the 50mm (equiv…lets not go there lol) a bit too tight.

    These just have a sense the main subjects are a bit lost in the frames. The group of 3 older ladies for example, Some nice expressions there and obviously I get you wanted to include the surroundings as that is a big part of the photo but they just seem to feel a bit lost to me

    Even though I rather am enjoying my Oly 25, part of me still does enjoy the perspective of a 35mm (equiv) more. I feel it makes me get closer to the subject yet still get a good amount of the environment included while a 50mm when you get in tight can start to become a bit isolating.

    Would of been interesting to see how a lens like the Oly 45mm (or the Panny 45/1.2!) would of done in this type of environment.

    • This is kind of a weird comment. Yes, a 35mm equivalent is always good in street situations where context is important. It’s also easier to hit focus if you’re using a rangefinder. But Steve was shooting with a 50 equivalent – that was the lens on his camera and what he chose to work with. Your constructive criticism has to do with his framing/cropping(which he chose not to do). And – in the street, on the day – when you take those 2 steps in, you risk lose the decisive moment.

      • I don’t think it really matters that much what focal length one is using, you can still shoot tight or loose, relatively speaking, with regards to the subjects. You can get up in peoples faces with an 18mm and fill the frame (maybe not recommended on the street lol) or you can use a 300mm lens and still have tons of negative space in your framing if your shooting people from well across the street.

        Really comes down to the working distance your comfortable with, and that directly affects one framing, especially when you don’t have a zoom.

        Decisive moment is well and good (although its become such an overused photo cliche these days) but composition is equally important. A decisive moment, poorly framed, doesn’t automatically yield a great photo anymore than a perfectly framed photo of a boring moment does.

        All comes down to taste and opinion in the end, but for me, most of these shots should of been tighter or closer.

        I feel removed from the subjects, like they were taken from a timid photographer who was a bit shy to get closer, which is something know from Steve’s other work that he isn’t, except for the Cupid shot.

        I just find it interesting in that the 50mm focal length was used, which often results in tighter compositions for most folks, yet here they were kind of lose and I think maybe a 90mm might of helped focus in on the main subjects of each photo will still being able to preserve some of the Vegas atmosphere, assuming Steve worked at the same subject to camera distance.

        Or I suppose one could crop a bit, but I’m usually one who likes to try to fill the frame with my intended subject, or switch to a longer focal length if I have one.


        • What some may not realize is the reason I was not in the faces of everyone here is because if you get in their face and take a picture and DO NOT pay them they will often chase after you wanting money. These are not subjects that are kind about photographing them without paying them. I did not have cash on me to go give everyone $5 so I shot from a distance but mostly had fun and observed. I am not afraid to get close, but on this night there were thousands of drunk people roaming and bumping in to me and if I stopped to frame I was causing a traffic jam most of the time. So these were just fun shots which is what it is all about. I would not frame shots like this, so was all about just going out and having fun. Even the dancers will STOP dancing if they see you are taking a photo but I preferred that last shot to a close up shot as it showed the crowd and the dancer in the background, in action. Sometimes close is not better, sometimes it is. Thanks for taking a peek!

    • I just decided to go B&W for these. The lighting here is awful and I have shot Leica here, Nikon here, Sony, Fuji, Olympus, Panaosnic, etc. It is very hard on AWB. I think from memory Sony did the best in this lighting with Fuji doing the worst (did a recent quick review of the X-E2 with shots from Fremont street). But I just was in a B&W mood.

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