Monday, July 12, 2010

Shooting Student Singing Sensations

Some shots shot during students' singing sessions on stage.

All of these were shot using my Nikon D60 without using the flash. I used manual control so that I can practice changing settings on the fly. Most of these were shot at ISO 200, aperture f/1.8 and shutter speed 1/80 seconds.

I really like the lighting setup on the stage. For some of the shots I was able to find composition angles that would include both the singer's facial expression and the rimlight effect contributed by the stage lights behind the subject.

Apart from the colorful lighting effects, I also tried to include diagonal lines and light bokeh into the photos.

Composition is important, but so is moment and expression. The facial expression of the singer is what I like best about the photos above and below.

I also like the clean rimlight around the singer's arm in the above photo. Too bad that in order to compose the shot to achieve this effect, one person in the background had to be covered by the mic stand. I think the photo would be better if the person were shown unobstructed, or if he was out of view completely.

One thing I have yet to achieve is capturing the energy of the live performance on stage. By opting to not use the flash at all I had to slow down the shutter speed so that I would get enough exposure for the photo. This would make it almost impossible to freeze energetic moments on stage, and most of them turned out blurry and uninteresting. Using the flash bleaches out all the colorful lighting on stage, plus the direct flash also takes away the rimlight and the lighting effects on the subject. I think for events like this in the future, with preparation, I'd probably do a CLS setting with colored gels to freeze and capture the energetic moments of the live stage performance.

If you are a professional photographer, or someone with experience shooting live performance events like this, please do provide me with critique on the above shots as well as my shooting techniques.

Comments are also welcome from anyone who happen to stumble upon this post. As a photographer hobbyist, feedback is very valuable so that I can continue to learn from my mistakes and improve my photographic works. Since I have no formal training in this hobby, trial-and-error and viewer feedback are mostly what I can rely on for self-improvement.

For more photos of the event, you can check out the Facebook albums here and here.
Thanks in advance for your comments and feedback :)


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