Lately I've been doing more and more band photos and I was asked by a couple people to write how I went about taking those photos. So by popular request, here it is. My thoughts on photographing bands. Second post, the singer. They're not as difficult as one might think.
Things to Keep in Mind
As I mentioned last week, singers move a lot. This can be difficult to photograph them for technical reasons: being out of focus, motion blur etc., but no two photos of the same singer are the same. This is why I love photographing singers. As long as you compose the photo & have your settings dialed in, you can't miss the shot. However, just because they're moving doesn't mean you can forget the other elements. You still need to use lighting, their facial expressions, & their movements to give the photo emotion. Other things to keep in mind are:
- EARMUFFS: This is a general rule of thumb when you photograph anything loud. Always bring a good pair of earmuffs or earplugs (or both) to protect your ears. After all, you still want to be able to hear your stereo system right?
- Make sure the Microphone isn't in their Face: If you've read last week's post on drummers, then you know why I say this. People look for people. And if they don't see the face, the photo looses some emotion.
- Single Them Out: Unlike drummers, singers can be singled out in their photographs. As you'll see in a minute, getting their detailed facial expressions can add emphasis to the photo.
- Go Wide: Sometimes an environmental photo (e.g: one with the singer on stage w/ another band member) can be the best way to get the feeling of being on stage.
Again, keep in mind these tips are what I've learned from photographing singers. They're not fact, but if they help you take a better photo, then I'm happy I could be of help to you.
As mentioned earlier, close shots can enhance the emotion by making that person the star of the image. But you have to be careful with the tight shots. Don't get too close as to photograph their hair follicles, but do get close enough to capture the moment.
Looking back at the images from BloodTypeG's performance, I can definitely tell you that it was a challenge. Milad is quite the performer (with him running & jumping around so much), and because of this, it would be near-impossible to capture him
under normal circumstances. But fortunately for me, this event (BRFC 2015) was held outdoors. This allowed me to crank the shutter up to 1/500's for some of the shots.
Similar to Gustin on the drums, I wanted to catch some motion blur in Elana's hair.
As mentioned earlier, wide shots can certainly be just as epic as the tight shots.