I didn't plan to take portraits of people at the Ren Faire on Labor Day, I planned to eat a turkey leg and watch some jousting. Once I started walking around, though, I knew I had to document the people at this event.
The only way to get a decent photo of a stranger is go up to that stranger and ask them for it. So, that's what happened.
Personally, I don't have a problem walking up to someone and asking if I can take their picture, because I always have a good reason for wanting it. There's something about them I think is cool. If you're afraid to approach someone, you probably don't want their picture for honorable reasons.
I'm not into the stalkerish "telephoto from across the room" style photos. They seem sleazy. Were you hired to catch someone cheating on their wife? Then why are you safely spying on them with a zoom lens? Talk to people, have a conversation, exchange email addresses, and above all, give them the chance to refuse having their photo taken. After all, who wants to feel like a creepy stalker at the end of the day?
With that being said, here's a few of my favorites.