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  • Writer's pictureDavid B Photography

Concert Photography

When I was in college the one thing I said time and time again is that I never wanted to shoot bands or concerts. At the time there were several people in my classes who all wanted to shoot bands and of course they all wanted to shoot for Rolling Stone. The logic I had was that there were likely 3 guys that shoot for Rolling Stone and 10 thousand people who want to, I thought to myself, no thanks I'll stick to portraits.

The only constant in life is change and so here I am. I have worked in the media for the last 15 years and about four years ago I discovered artists don't like video but they are okay with stills. It was when I was trying to get one of our photographers at the TV station I was working for in Milwaukee, Wisconsin credentialed to shoot Bruce Spingstein. The promoter was having none of it, but he mentioned to me kind of in passing, if you have a still guy you can send him. I thought to myself, game on! As it turns out IF they allow video you typically get to shoot 30 seconds of the first song and that's it. If you're a still photographer you can shoot for the first three songs

When you shoot a concert a lot of times you don't get to shoot from the pit area you have to shoot from the sound board which is typically several hundred feet away. Which means long lens minimum 300mm longer is better. This was shot with a 600mm lens. The rules of engagement for this concert, was the first three songs however you could not shoot the open when the video board was on. As it turns out the video board was on for the entire first song. The laser light show was amazing however digital cameras and lasers don't work and play well together, I'm trying to make adjustments as I shoot...tick,tick,tick,tick the clock in my head is running because we are now well into the second song and I still haven't gotten a workable image. Okay screw it; switch the camera to manual mode bump the ISO a bit and set the shutter and fire away.

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