Concert photos without a flash!Please help, Im clueless!

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by jadinew, Oct 28, 2005.

  1. jadinew
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    jadinew New Member

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    Hi Everyone.

    I'm totally new to photography and to this forum. I am in fact a journalist and usually just review music gigs. However, I have been given the opportunity to take photos from the photography pit at an upoming gig. I will be really close to the action, only problem is I am not allowed to use a flash. I will be using a Minolta Dynax 404si with a 28-80mm AF lens, without a tripod.

    Does anyone have any advice as to how I will get the best results?
    I'm just a bit worried about lighting, camera-shake etc.

    Thank you so much, I feel a bit out of my depth!
  2. Johnboy2978
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    Johnboy2978 Well-Known Member

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    I'll take a stab at this since no one else has answered yet, though I don't consider myself an authority on photography by any means. That being said, I think you are going to have a difficult time ahead of you.
    First, the flash would be essentially useless anyway, unless you can be w/in about 10 feet since the effective range typically isn't much beyond that. It's been a while since I've been to a concert, but the lighting is generally quite poor except for the stage itself. Therefore, you will need to let the camera absorb a lot of available ambient light to properly expose the picture. This will mean having a higher setting for the ISO (probably 800 at least) and slower shutter speed. The downside is that with a slower shutter speed is that you are going to have a difficult time holding it steady enough to avoid camera shake, and in addition, the band is going to be moving as well.
    So, I would practice, practice, practice with low light conditions and different camera settings before the concert. Hope this helps some, and there will probably be others more experienced than I to chime in as well.
    jc
  3. jadinew
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    jadinew New Member

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    Thanks Johnboy. I am going to be right in front of the stage, so it's a shame I can't use my flash but I will definitely have a play around with different films/shutter speeds before the gig to see what works best.
    I think I'll start by converting my house into a make-shift stage later on, and I'll have to bribe my housemates into being rockstars for the night. I'm sure they won't mind!
  4. jstuedle
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    jstuedle New Member

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    Photography is all about light. I used to shoot a bands PR shos and all were live from local gigs. In order to get enough light I had to set ISO to 800, max. on my D1X. I used a 35mm f/2.0 or 55 f/1.2. With the 35mm that I used most often, shutter speeds were in the 1/15 to 1/60 sec. range and the results were something like this:

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    I don't know if any of this helps your situation. The biggest trick is to shoot a LOT! You will most likely delete more than you keep but it's worth it.
  5. ilovephoto
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    ilovephoto New Member

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    hello!
    I think that first is not an option to have a low ISO film,
    a low ISO will make you have to shoot at very low speed...
    So you should use a tripod and a low light film, Kodak do a great fast film with a nice fine grain; its call KODAK PORTRA 800
    (and color are great, rich and saturate)
    ..and an other important thing that you should always do when shooting peoples (or anythings) that move pretty fast is to not go under 1/60 sec.
    (of course if you want avoid this type of effect seen in the previouus post)

    :):hail:
  6. Force of Nature
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    Force of Nature New Member

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    I have taken some gig photos and I was told a great technique called 'Pushing' the film I think, I took a regular 400 iso film, and told the camera it was 1600. then when developping the film, i doubled and doubled again the time in the developer and the shots were great! that was black and white film though, so Im not sure how that would work with colour.

    The thing is, you will need a tripod if you cant use a flash. In fact I think I only just survived with both.
  7. jstuedle
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    jstuedle New Member

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    The images I posted were taken without flash or tripod. IF you can shoot 800 ISO or faster film and f/2.0 or faster aperture, you can photograph most gigs using the bands light show. I took dozens of images each week with these two being typical of the quality of exposure. Good luck.

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