How I Photographed Hanson and Icona Pop - 4 Concert Photography Tips


Taking photos during a concert can be a challenge. Dealing with multiple challenges at once - fast action, changing lighting, and often low-light at night or indoors - can lead to blurry, underexposed photos. 

There are a few things that can make the job a lot easier. Here are some tips: 

Use A Camera You Are Familiar With

In the middle of all the action, you need to be both anticipatory and reactive, and knowing your camera and it's settings instinctively will help with that. Whether it's altering your shutter speed or ISO, or making some other adjustment, the less time you need to think about adjusting your settings and just be able to do them, means more opportunity to get a great shot.  


Gotta Go Fast

When it comes to lens selection for shooting concerts, the faster the lens, the better. That means an aperture of f/2.8 or wider. Getting as much available light to your sensor is crucial when shooting in these conditions. Being able to get all that light means you can crank up your shutter speed over 1/320 and freeze the action in your shots. Use whatever lens fits your personal style - 24-70mm f/2.8's, 35/50mm f/1.4 - f/1.8, etc. - as long as it's as fast as f/2.8. 

ISO is a Balancing Act

Don't be afraid to turn up your ISO in order raise your shutter speed fast enough to get the shot. A little bit of noise that can be cleaned up in post is way better than not getting the shot at all. 

Anticipation Pays Off

The best part about concerts is that there's a rhythm to the way things go. Use that to your advantage. When the beat drops, when the chorus starts, moments when there's going to be a shift in the mood usually means a shift in lighting. By planning around this, you can take photographs that really capture the moment in a show.  


Using the four tips above, you can walk away from a show with stronger shots than before. If you use these tips to take a shot, tag me and let me see!

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