Concert Photography

by admin

Taking photos at a concert is not the easiest thing in the world. In fact, it is one of the most difficult situations to take photographs. It is far easier to take photos in a studio where you have control of lighting, poses, and other factors.
Why is concert photography so difficult? You have no control of the lighting. It is often dark but is also constantly changing. Also, you can’t pose the performers. They are constantly moving. That makes things especially difficult when the lighting is low and there is a lot of movement. That combination does not work well together. Also, you might be able to move around some, but will often be restricted from moving to where you want to get the photo angle you want. Plus, there are other people in the audience and they can be moving or standing up and getting in the way of your photos. They paid money to be there and probably aren’t going to care that much about your attempts to get a good photograph. And it is often the case that there are restrictions about the songs and times you can take pictures.
How to start? Hopefully, you know some local bands. It is easier to start in a smaller, more intimate venue than in a large venue with lots of people. The smaller more intimate locations allow you to move around much more easily and get the camera angles that you want. You also probably won’t need press credentials. If you don’t know any local bands, go to some shows and try to make friends. However, if you are interested in concert photography, you probably already know someone in a local band.
Some people say that it is not the equipment but the person that makes a good photograph. This is both true and false. The photographer needs to know what he or she is doing and what makes a good photograph. Without that, the best equipment in the world won’t make a difference. However, for concert photography, equipment does make a difference for some of the reasons discussed above, dim lighting and movement. This is especially true if you are starting out since the small venues tend to have poor lighting, often just a red and a blue spotlight.
Therefore, you want a camera with an open aperture such as f/1.4, 1.8 or 2.8. You also want a camera that can take photos with little noise at high ISO. Particularly for pictures of the drummer you want to take pictures at a high or reasonably high shutter speed, allowing you to freeze their movement.
Some photographers feel it is better to allow some noise in a picture and use editing software at a later time if you want to reduce the noise. You may just want to leave it. But if you go for a photo with no noise by using a long exposure time and lower ISO you will get a lot of blurring. So, there are tradeoffs. You might try black and white photos as an option to solve some of this issue.


Related Articles