Quick question about shooting live bands

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by UdubBadger, Dec 21, 2008.

  1. UdubBadger

    UdubBadger TPF Noob!

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    So I was at another show tonight taking some pix for a buddy and there was a man there, alone, shooting also. I didn't know him and the show was kind of a "unique" event where most people who came were from the same town or friends with people who were. Anyway, as my buddy's set begins and I start snapping away, I notice this guy is using his flash (not even just the little one on his Rebel XT or whatever he was shooting with but a 430ex speedlight) straight on and taking lots of pictures.

    What is the etiquette on this? I was always under the impression that you don't use your flash at a live show and you try your best to shoot for like 10-20 min and then give it a rest so everyone can enjoy the set. I was gonna go up to the guy and suggest if he can't get a good shot without his flash maybe he should go relearn how to use a camera... besides he was shooting so much it messed with 1/2 my shots cuz his flash would go off right as I was shooting at the same time.

    Thoughts please....
     
  2. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I've been shooting bands for decades; I've never seen an etiquette or rule book. I'd say the rules for photography are for the location management or the performers to decide.

    I understand that lot's of flash can be annoying and distracting, but all sorts of annoying and distracting behavior goes on at live music shows.

    When I'm shooting bands and weddings I'm surrounded by lots of other photographers flashing away. I run into a shot ruined by someone else's flash about 1 in a thousand.
     
  3. UdubBadger

    UdubBadger TPF Noob!

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    well the band was a bunch of my friends and it looked as if the other guy didn't know too many people there, let alone the people on stage he was photographiing. The band has only had work done by me and I've always chose not to use a flash as I find it incredibly annoying in a dark room while trying to enjoy a set... as it was. I read somewhere its a big "no-no" read here

    anyone else ever hear about not using a flash?
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    I guarantee that the photographers who've become successful and famous for shooting live music over the last 4 or 5 decades ignored all the etiquette rules posted in that article when it suited them. :)

    Look, if the guy's being a jerk the band or the management can say something. Just a comment like "Hey man, yer blinding me." from the lead singer would do it. Or complain to the bouncer. Finding other folks to agree with you on the internet does you no good.

    Everyone's a photographer these days. What can you do except learn to deal with it. Or the management can put up signs at the door "No professional cameras allowed." Professional cameras will be defined by a bouncer as any camera with interchangeable lenses.
     
  5. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    At small bars and clubs where local bands usually play, it really doesn't matter how long you shoot or what you shoot with.

    I'm pretty sure whatever "rules" you're looking at apply to larger venues. If you get photo passes to shoot some "moderately famous" band like Seether, The Dropkick Murphys, Colby Kaliea(sp!), Flobots, etc... the venues and/or bands themselves will specify no flash and most likely that you're only allowed to shoot for the first three songs and then you're out. Some people/places don't care what you shoot with or how long you shoot, but that's not the normal at shows like those listed above.
     
  6. UdubBadger

    UdubBadger TPF Noob!

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    well i just thought out of respect to the band and the fans around trying to enjoy the show people would refrain from using a flash is all. I always thought it was kinda a known rule when you shoot a live show and figured I'd confirm or deny it on here... I don't care if people agree or not, I want to know what the "rules" are.
     
  7. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The rules are whatever management says they are, and they change from venue to venue or event to event. If you need to know what the rules are, it's a good idea to talk to the management rather than ask here.
     
  8. UdubBadger

    UdubBadger TPF Noob!

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    fair enough, i always thought photographers just had some "non intrusion" rules of their own... guess I'm just a little more courteous than others.
     
  9. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Nah photographers are way to underpaid to respect each other. :lol:

    Be smug in the knowledge that his photos probably sucked big time. Nothing kills live show photographs faster than a flash.
     
  10. jstuedle

    jstuedle No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well said, short and to the point. The whole visual of "LIVE" is the light show. Without the ambient color and fog, the effect is gone. Flash just kills it.
     
  11. UdubBadger

    UdubBadger TPF Noob!

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    agreed
     
  12. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    That's kind of like saying since hammers can bend nails when used improperly we shouldn't use hammers to build houses. Flash is a tool, and like all other tools it must be learned to used with finesse and skill.

    I try to be conscious of the viewing pleasure of the audience, and I always follow any rules told to me by the entertainers or local management. Most of my band photos are taken without flash, but if the situation calls for it I'm not afraid to use it.

    If someone is being a dork, and wrecking the experience for the audience then the management should be told. Saying something snide like "I bet your photos suck" to the offender is unlikely to solve the problem.
     

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