6 tips to take great photographs at music concerts

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10 Responses

  1. Mercury says:

    Cost is prohibitive for digital SLR. Btw I hoped to hear a bryan adams song on the blog 🙂

  2. Mercury says:

    Hey cant stand music for a long time.. cant you make it optional?

  3. Rajaram S says:

    mercury ..ihave corrected that post ..yup, even i found that sound too much to handle for a long time 🙂

  4. kRiZ cPEc says:

    ah great! thanks very much for the tips!

  5. elsietee says:

    Great tips!! Thanks for your help!

  6. Jairzinho Morris says:

    Hi there, Wow, let me start by saying i am very impressed and congratulate you on the skills you posess so far.

    I myself am all new to this, however I have been the nominated photographer for all family functions for the past… well let just say many years. I now also take pictures at various events around london, I should add that this is only a hobby which is getting myself recognition around my peers. I have been told that I need to take this photographer business seriously as many people have said I take a good photo. No self recommendation here though. I think my pics are ok but not that good. I wonder could so many people be wrong?

    Anyhow! I have read your article time and time again and have now purchased the following…. Canon EOS 450D with 18-55mm lens – Tamron AF70-300mm Lens – Canon Speedlite 430EX II and of course a Good Tripod..

    Previously I was using a Panasonic Lumix until it got stolen resulting in me having to use my very handy Canon Digital IXUS 75..

    God Only knows how I got good pics before purchasing what i have now.

    I’m hoping to get the best pictures I have even taken in my entire life and take this business a little more seriously.

    Just wanted to share with you that I admire your focus to photographer and hope to submit an article like your one day.

    God speed to you & your family and Happy Snapping

    Jairzinho Morrris

  7. Petrov says:


    i was Googling music stage photography and came across your post. I don’t want to be to critical but if you’re going to give someone advices you should know what you are talking about, and please do forgive me for saying this but judging from the photos you posted, you don’t.

    I couldn’t help but laughing as i read some parts of the post.

    You are right about the compact cameras, they are not reliable enough to garantee a good job.

    You are also right about the ISO, but even with the best of digital SLR you shouldn’t go beyond 800 ISO as you risk to much digital noise in the darker sections of the photos.

    The shutter speed…. well…. if you spent the money to buy a digital SLR why on earth would you give the camera control over your photos? Use it in manual, and i mean FULLY MANUAL, that way if someone takes you’re advice about spot mettering (totally correct, by the way) you measure light to the artist’s face or a brighter piece of clothing and it’s done, only once, unless there are some dramatic light changes. But the rockstars as you call them usually have a follow spot on them and that light is constant.

    The Zoom lens is very bad advice, i’m not saying that it is not handy some times, but if you want good photos (without being friends with the band, manager or organization) you should be willing to work for the photos, and this means getting to the venue early so you can get as close to the first row as possible and from there the 18-70mm lens (or something similar) that came with your digital SLR will do a great job.

    Flash can be useful (if you take my previous advice) as it can do a great job in countering back light from the stage, so you’ll get all the colorful lights in the background but still the artist well lit. But you might get in trouble with security because big stars usually don’t like flashes shot in their faces.

    The advice about using the support band to get you light right for the main artist is also not a very good one because the big artist will have his own light engineer, meaning that the light will be different.

    I know this post has a few years, but anyway this is what shows up in Google when you search for this subject and i just didn’t wanted people to be fooled.

    All the best and i hope you are still taking (better) concerts photos.

  8. Rajaram S says:

    Thanks Petrov for the comments.
    if you see my other photography posts, the expected audience is not someone who wants to be a pro or make money out of photography.
    It is for the casual hobbyist who wants to take better-than-casual photographs.
    i agree that “one should be willing for the photos”, but my write-up is aimed at someone who went to enjoy the concert and “also” plans to take some photos.
    An example would be someone who goes to a concert and then puts up photos on facebook for his friends.

    But, i do agree to your point about the quality of zoom lens (unless of course it is a prime lens) or the point about flash.

    thanks again for your detailed comment.

  9. Petrov says:

    Well, concert photography is what i do for a living and i am in no way afraid of competition. In my opinion with more concert photographers are out there we all gain, the artists will have better images, and the photographers will have to stay sharp and always at their best.

    I understood that your post was aimed at the taking-some-photos-to-put-on-facebook kind of amateur photographer, but there is nothing wrong with giving good tips that can serve everyone.

    Keep your interest in photography,

  1. April 27, 2009

    […] Click below for other links on concert photography: More Thoughts on Concert Photography How to Photograph Rock Concerts – The Basics How to Photograph Rock Concerts – Beyond Basics Three Songs, No Flash 6 Tips to Take Great Photographs at Music Concerts […]

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