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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 29 Jan 2018 (Monday) 16:35
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Concert Lens

 
firme
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Jan 29, 2018 16:35 |  #1

So I got an opportunity to shoot for a group of music artists at the Forge in Joliet. Sure was interesting and good experience for being my first time shooting at a concert. I went to google/YouTube to look for suggestions/references for shooting settings. I used a Tamron 17-50 F2.8. I set camera between 1600 to upper 2000's ISO and at F3.2 as the lighting changed constantly. Not sure if this was the proper commonly used settings but I only had 20mins as that is all they had for playing time. There were other artists I took pictures of since I was already there.

I tried searching posts on concert lens, but only got threads from 3 years ago.

What is a widely used lens for this type of shooting? I ask as I might be able to do more for this group. Which will benefit me more since I will get some more experience, won't get it down but will definitely be less nervous than the first time. I did see a photographer that had what appear to be a Canon 70-200 lens. Thanks for the help.




  
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PhotosGuy
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Jan 29, 2018 21:57 |  #2

Tough to answer because you were there & I wasn't, and you didn't even upload your best image for me/us to see!

So take that image & figure out what you need to change the next time to get the images that you need.
Learn as you go. Take a LOT of shots. Discard the crap. Keep what's keepable. Good luck!


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
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firme
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Jan 30, 2018 08:56 |  #3

Thanks for the reply but I was looking to get more of a suggestion of lens that may be commonly used. I will definitely post a picture though.

As I do not have much experience, I am ignorant to this type of photography so perhaps I don't realize that there are many lens that can be used. These are a few I read about regarding lens type: CANON EF 24-70mm f/2.8G II USM, CANON EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM, CANON 16-35mm f2.8L III USM, a fish lens was mentioned also. Even a 100mm was mentioned as well. Being my first time, I didn't know what to expect as far as lighting, the performer's movement, etc. I can only guess what real concert photographers have to deal and work with. But will not be anywhere close to their level anytime soon.

I was at the front row, so the lens I think helped me. Also, it was the only one I have at the moment. Now I did tried taking pictures at a much further distance so the lens did not allow me to get acceptable pictures (for my liking).

I do agree that will only get better by shooting more and learning how to determine what is good and what is not.




  
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oingyboingybob
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Jan 30, 2018 09:56 as a reply to  @ firme's post |  #4

All depends on the venue and how close to the stage you can get. If you are only going to the one venue you mentioned and you can get close to the action then your Tamron 17-50 should do the job reasonably for group/full stage shots if the lighting is adequate but not brilliant for individual band member shots unless you crop heavily and with low light images camera shake and noise become issues. That venue appears to not have any restrictions on photography - many others do, and anything that looks even remotely 'pro' may well not be allowed in due mainly to artists' and management copyright paranoia - however your budget will also determine what you can have. The Canon 70-200 is a cracking lens whether it's the IS or non IS, f4 or f2.8 etc but the L version stands out and will probably get you noticed. The non-L 70-300 IS is a good contender at a reasonable price, relatively lightweight and is less conspicuous to boot but not as fast.
My preferred lens would be the Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS however I have yet to be allowed into any of the bigger concert venues here in the UK with which is a pain, as you can imagine, so I tend to take my Canon G9X ii compact which is tiny, unobtrusive and produces images that are quite good but certainly not as good as I'd like.
I'm assuming you have a Canon camera body.


Canon: EOS 1DX, 100-400L Mkii, 70-300 f4-5.6 mkii, 24-105L, 100 f2.8L, 16-35 f4L
Sigma: 150-600C

  
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scriveyn
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Post edited 4 months ago by scriveyn with reason 'spelling'. (2 edits in all)
     
Jan 30, 2018 10:24 |  #5

I too started out with a 17-50mm f/2.8 - the Sigma version, mostly seated from the first row - and found it a good lens for concert photography.

As you and others mentioned, there are lots of parameters:

- your distance from the stage
- the size of the band
- low lighting
- multicoloured lighting
- static or fast moving performers or a mix of both

I went on to use the following lenses:

70-200mm f/4.0 manual focus - very good both for picking out 2-3 performers from a larger group, though f/2.8 and AF will be better, but much more expensive.

10-22mm f/4.5-5.6 - only moderately useful, perhaps when you're standig right abreast with the stage, getting unusual perspectives

100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 - picking out portraits of the performers

A few ideas:
- I've been shootong with the 17-50mm in before the interval, long lens after the interval
- I've been using a monopod, shooting with liveview from knee height, so as not to distiurb other members of the audience.
Perhaps most importantly, get lenses with good AF performance and good aperture, as far as you can afford ;-)a

Here are a few threads with a mix of photographers, equipment and situations:

Post Your Best "Local Band" Shots

BEST *SINGER* pics Please, closeups preferred

jazz - add your own

P.S.: I've been shooting with Canon bodies 60D/80D. - What is yours?


Frank, also known as jazzman
C&C welcome
Image Editing OK (for reposting in the same thread)

I Jazz

  
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firme
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Jan 30, 2018 11:00 |  #6

Thanks guys for the replies and help. I am using Canon 80D.




  
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bildeb0rg
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Jan 30, 2018 11:53 |  #7

Check out probably the two best names in the business, Armando Gallo and Ross Halfin. Worry less about gear and work more on the relationship with bands you meet




  
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PMGphotog
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Jan 30, 2018 15:41 |  #8

To the OP. As others have said it really depends on the size of the venue, how close you are to the performers and the lighting conditions.

For most live band/concert photographers a 24-70 and a 70-200 ( both f/2.8 ) are the go to lenses they will use in general. But at the same time a lot of togs have used other focal lengths and options depending on the conditions they are shooting in.

For instance due to my personal budget I ended up using a Canon 60d and a Sigma 30mm f/1.4 for small to medium indoor venues a lot, but at outdoor festivals during the day I got decent shots of main stage artists using a very cheap ( less than $100 Tamron 55-100mm lens at f/5.6 and above ). The key for me was to set my f stop for the DoF I wanted, then the shutter speed to either stop motion or enhance it and then set my ISO to what gave a decent exposure. ( or at least an exposure that I could work in Lightroom and pull in the shadows a bit then apply some noise reduction and have a shot worth showing the band/artiste...)

I've got pretty decent shots using a Canon 1000D with a Nifty Fifty at gigs but usually only if what the band were doing and the lighting coincided, or it was an outdoor gig and a nice day ( unusual here in Scotland, but it does happen sometimes ;) )

I personally prefer small venue gigs now where I know the acts or the promoter and can speak to the band and ask if they mind me using flash for a few shots ( usually they are fine with it, if not I crank up my ISO until the exposure seems right ) and tend to do stuff for the band that is more backstage and promo, but for gigs where I don't know anyone but have a photo/pit pass I try not to go above 3200/4000 ISO on my 60D or 6400 or my 5DMII and then roll between shutter speed and aperture depending on the shot I want to get.

The 80D is a fine camera and the shot settings you mentioned with the Tamron lens you have is close to 24-70mm on full frame. They would probably be what I'd have set up as a guess before a band comes on, then adjusted as the lights and action happened.

Post some of your shots so we can see how it worked out.


Canon EOS 1000d /60d : 18-55mm IS kit lens. Canon 50mm 1.8 MK2. Tamron 55-200mm F4-5.6, battery grip to make my cam look pro..and 30mm Sigma F1.4 recently added
http://www.flickr.com/​photos/patmcguire2011/ (external link)

  
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firme
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Post edited 4 months ago by firme.
     
Jan 30, 2018 20:33 |  #9

Here are two images. The 1st is at ISO 400 and the 2nd at ISO 2500.


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firme
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Jan 30, 2018 20:35 |  #10

Here are two more, these also at ISO 4000.


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firme
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Jan 30, 2018 20:42 |  #11

This was taken with flash. They did allow flash. But I did not take much with flash. None of these photos have been edited yet.


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Patrick ­ H
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Post edited 4 months ago by Patrick H.
     
Jan 31, 2018 19:27 |  #12

35mm 1.4

All of those photos would have only benefited by a bigger aperture.


5D mkIV | 35Lii | 135L | + some zooms.

  
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firme
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Jan 31, 2018 20:17 |  #13

Might they have worked better if I had gone to 2.8 vs 3.2/4?




  
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Nethawked
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Post edited 4 months ago by Nethawked.
     
Feb 05, 2018 11:22 |  #14

The widest you can get. Even with, expect to be challenged because it's a challenging genre!

I'm a concert photographer. By default I carry the holy trinity of Canon f/2.8 zooms - 16-35mm III, 24-70mm II, 70-200mm II. Aperture when I'm in the pit is most often from f/2.8-3.5, and shutter speed as much as I can get (most often 1/160-1/320). I'm often in dark theaters and can comfortably shoot and clean up images up to ISO 12,800, although it depends on how far off I am from ideal exposure (naturally). For really dark places, in particular where my movement is limited (in clubs without a photo pit) the primes are sometimes dug out - Sigma 20mm f/1.4, Canon 50mm f/1.4, Sigma 85mm f/1.4 are on my list. I shoot with 5DIV and now the 6DII (articulating screen for the win!), which is standing in for my 5DIII.

Hope this helps.

I'd share my website but it's a Wordpress & hosting nightmare at the moment. I started an instagram account about a year ago, here's some of my public work:

https://www.instagram.​com/jcarbonephotos/ (external link)

Good luck! It's a very exciting world, I hope you adapt well to it.




  
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Nethawked
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Feb 05, 2018 11:26 |  #15

bildeb0rg wrote in post #18552462 (external link)
Check out probably the two best names in the business, Armando Gallo and Ross Halfin. Worry less about gear and work more on the relationship with bands you meet

You're not going to gain a good relationship with bands unless you have decent photos in your portfolio, which requires gear sufficient to do the job.




  
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Concert Lens
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