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Advice for gig photography

Discussion in 'Photography Techniques' started by HeatherTheVet, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Tomorrow (Fri) I am going out to a gig. Again. I've barely been in my house recently. Anyway, this will be much quieter than the last couple. It's something that's really important to me. I'm going to see Annie Ross.

    I'd like to take some kick ass pictures if possible. We're probably talking jazz club lighting - it's at the Oran Mor for the Scots, I don't know if it's in the basement club (jazz lighting) or upstairs in the converted church, which has the high vaulted ceiling lit up and is a much warmer lighting.

    I am taking the NEX5. I have - 16mm kit, Canon FD 18-35mm, Vivitar 70-205mm, I can borrow the 18-55mm kit.

    So my question is - what do you think I need to do in terms of settings? Aperture, ISO, all that jazz. I suppose the lens will depend upon the seating arrangement. I imagine the big one will be too unstable, it's a tripod job and I don't see that being popular.

    At the moment my instinct is to take the 18-55kit and use the automatic settings so I don't have to worry about it. But I am trying to learn about the Canon one so it would be good to stick with it. The fear is that I miss the gig because I'm playing with the camera, or I come away with no good shots.

    What's a girl to do!
     
  2. Bugleone

    Bugleone SC Regular

    113
    Jun 1, 2011
    England
    OK,... Take the kit zoom in your bag 'in case'. Set the centre button of the NEX to give 'iso' as one of it's three custom options,..set 'camera' to use aperture priority 'A',.... use the 70 - 205 on f8 (and the kit zoom if nec.) Wear stretch jeans or other comfy trousers,..confy enough that you can raise your left leg and put your heel on the edge of your seat,...support the camera and lens on your raised knee. Don't get locked into staring at the screen,....compose then shift your eyes to the subject and get into the action on stage,....press shutter when you see 'climax' in the performer. Watch the shutter speed number bottom left of screen and put the 'iso' up to take you into safe speed for the action,....with these larger lenses you might want to NOT go below about 1/100 sec. Once you gt into BOTH music and snapping you can pick some nice compositions using the zoom control,...if you can't get close ups of the performer,....try to include the stage lighting to give atmosphere,....good luck and enjoy both parts of your event!

    image0.

    image0-1.
     
  3. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Wow, thank you thank you for such comprehensive advice!

    I don't know if I'll be allowed to take photos, but if I am I'll be ready. I'm also a bit worried about the shutter noise - as previously noted it's pretty loud. Might be the equivalent of sitting eating crunchy crisps.

    Love those two photos. Thanks pal
     
  4. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    Heather, you got very good advice and examples above.
    Listen to the music. Hopefully there's a drummer.
    Normally the drummer hits the Bass drum on 1 & 3 beats and the snare from on 2 & 4 beat.
    If you release on beat, the sound of the shutter shouldn't bother anyone.
    An old timers trick is to breathe....
    Inhale and compose, hold your breath ... release...
    exhale... This eliminates body movement...
     
  5. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Good idea Streetshooter. I am from a family of drummers, and play a variety of instruments so hopefully hitting the beat should be easy! There will be a trio behind her, and if I pik the louder songs we might be fine.

    I'm at work trying to get the camera ready. If the soft key setting thingmy a feature in the new firmware, which I haven't yet downloaded? Will it take long?! Much flying by the seat of my pants today. I've turned the LCD down to minimum, attached the little gorillapod clip, got 2 full batteries.

    Bet I won't be allowed photographs now. It'll be quite an intimate gig I should imagine.
    Did I mention I was so excited my heart has been going like a train all day? :)
     
  6. Bugleone

    Bugleone SC Regular

    113
    Jun 1, 2011
    England
    You should be using firmware ver. 3 or the latest, 4 to get the customising feature which changes NEX into a winner in my view.

    If you trip the shutter at the emotional 'climax' or moment of expression in the performer then you are very unlikely to upset any other audience members because they will also be emotionally engaged,...what you MUST avoid in this tyoe of work is the 'clonk, clonk clonk' of SLR on 'motordrive',...people just don't like it! single, thoughtful clicks, even one a bit loud like NEX, will probably be ok.
     
  7. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    I love the sound of a Nikon motor drive in the morning......
     
  8. BruPri

    BruPri SC Top Veteran

    699
    May 11, 2011
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Bruce J. Pritchard
    thank you Mr. Duvall!
     
  9. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Green for go! We are in A Mode, firmware updated, the soft keys are customised, F8 set, I just need to stick the stuff in my bag and hit the road in about 15mins. I can fit in a cup of tea before I go too, very important. I had a scoot down to the venue this morning, apparently we will be in the basement so it's typical basement jazz club I guess. Without the smoke. The walls, roof and floor are black, there is a bar at the back and a stage at the front.

    I'll feel an idiot now if I get nothing.
     
  10. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Hmmm. Been downloading the photos. It's not encouraging. There is only really one that is saveable - the shutter speed was too slow so they are all blurred. But I wasn't able to do and change much, there was a great potential for being thrown out. When I say it is saveable it will require some photoshop genius. Not something I possess so I may send it to a pal to be rescued. When I get a minute I'll put them up so you can see what I mean.
     
  11. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    Karen,
    What exposures we're you getting?
    Did you use Auto iso? What limits do you have set for that feature?
    I'd like to see your stuff and talk about the above when you have time...

    Don...USA guy with family in the pub in Hawick.
     
  12. HeatherTheVet

    HeatherTheVet SC All-Pro

    Apr 23, 2011
    Scotland
    Heather
    Karen? Who's this Karen? Have you got another woman?

    Heather - Scottish girl with an Uncle in Philadelphia.
     
  13. pdh

    pdh SC Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    oh dear, he's on the horse tranquilisers again ...
     
  14. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Jul 12, 2010
    Philly, Pa
    Nah... It's the young woman thing....
    I forget everything....

    Sorry....