One of my all-time favourite photos that I've taken is a gig photo; That was taken with my Nikon D3100 and a 70-300 lens. It's my favourite lens to use, but I bring a couple of others with me to gigs plus a flashgun because I vary what I use based on lighting.
orangefruitsFeatured By OwnerJan 7, 2013Hobbyist Photographer
Yes that is always the bonus of a nice zoom lens, although I do really like prime lenses and having to get that little bit closer. But I am thinking of the 70-200mm because I'm not going to get permission to go on stage at all the gigs I do.
I have moved up from 18-55 to 18-135 and this is the goal.
18-200 This is the lens I am gunning for, buy this it will set you straight for damn near every range. 11x Zoom is monstrous at f-3.5-5.6! [link]
Once this bad boy is in my kit I am going to sell my 55-250mm, and my 18-135mm and it will have been paid for. No need to ever change lenses at all really, the only thing after that is primes for speed through the incremental ranges of 18mm, 50mm, 85mm.
I prefer up scaling from the kit lens because it tests your skills, makes you utilise what you have and appreciate the limits of the kit a lot more. Once I upgraded to the 135mm I got a lot of mileage from the wide angle and when I needed up close and personal I had it right there, the F-number was the same on base but better through the 55mm milestone. So I sold my Kit Lens whats the point in having an inferior limited slower version? This 18-200mm lens is the next and last step, same F-number on base, but as it rises through the 55mm and 135mm thresholds the f-number is actually better than that of the previous lenses. Making it comparable to the 55-250mm I own and because of the versatility the extra zoom isn't worth keeping it.
So I am selling both. Again so I can really take the sting off the retail price off my 18-200mm, by just selling the out moded lenses, I still used those out modes, In fact I really got the most out of them. Good old Bowling For Soup xD [link]
But since writing this I realise it's time to upgrade so I ordered it today just now xD Going to trade in when I receive it in the mail XD On sale my lenses should make this new lens cost me about £50-100 in trade and I got 7 year warrenty.
18-200 This is the lens I am gunning for, buy this it will set you straight for damn near every range.
I don't see why you're so excited about that lens. It'll switch to f/5.6 at about 50mm~ which is awful. You're going to lose an aful lot of light when it gets to f/5.6, especially at 200 and for the dark indoor environments! You'd need to start bumping up the ISO big time, and would therefore need a good body to handle the noise its going to create.
Well it's never an issue because I always bring lights xD
Never gone to a job under-prepared in my life The idea was to consolidate my 18-135 and 55-250 together sure there is a loss in range but I don't have to switch lenses on the fly. As a gig tog that's a big deal means I can roam about more.
I always make sure a stage is well light!
Never needed a fast lens, I am too involved with the job to afford it to break, I have had more awkward shots of bands balancing on one leg on a balcony or couching precariously near the edge of a stage to get a good live view angle with my 60D to want to risk the "2 grand drop of doom." I would rather mitigate the claim if anything.
Plus insurance would eat my ass if I claimed for a few grand lol, but yeah I like the versatility and the fact I dun need to expose my camera body to the smoke and crap as much
Genuinely excited. Bought an IF filter for it and a reverse dock can't wait to see the macro zoom on this thing the 18-135 Has a monstrous macro zoom.
I was going to ask if you shoot, full frame, then you stated you shoot with a 60D so that answers my question lol. You'd a little more more mileage at the mid-wide range in terms of focal length if you were shooting FF and had a 70-200, that's why I'd always go with two f/2.8's (24-70 and 70-200) but I'm more of a nature & landscape person.
At the moment though, I do have an 18-55 and a 55-200. Only time I really wanted to consolidate those into one was when I was going around taking urban pics in San Francisco. So annoying continually swapping, so I can see why if you're being paid you'd want to get the shot without taking your eye off what's going on. I'd still rather have more light though, and just take a second body.
Portable lighting kit, plonk it down light it up take like 5 minutes and better than burning your battery on flashing or using a speed light, looks more natural, can drop ISO down to a studio lighting level.
f/5.6 on a 200mm end simply won't cut it for concerts, it's just not possible, unless you can somehow manipulate the laws of physics. Even f/4 at 200mm is stretching it, with having to use ISO 25k just to get a barely enough shutter speed to not get blurry images.
Good for you, but unless you're some sort of god that can manipulate the laws of physics, I don't see how the fuck does that have to do with low light shooting, considering that at f/5.6 1/400 and ISO 3200 would under expose even normal indoor lighting.
Only if you want to shoot from miles away. Without a lighting engineer on set. And if there is no lighting guy, what kind backwards ass concert are you going to... Drop D in the Dark?
Some artists have, multiple flashing red heads and day glow spots are you going to tell me you can't deal with that as well? Also ISO 25k WTF Are you serious? Are you shooting outside, in a power cut, at midnight, with no moon? What concert has no lighting rig? The levels of derp in this response, all the images you posted of bands are between 18-55mm at F-3.5-5.6 averaging at F4 what you banging on about ?
Even then the bands you have shot are at ISO 200-250 with what looks like a speed light judging on the shadows. Why on earth would I stand a million miles away for a shot of a band?
So you first go on insulting bands, then to insulting other photographers.
Maybe when you grow up, you'll realize that actual jazz and blues gigs are done in dark clubs, metal gigs are also mostly dark. Not everything is lighten up perfectly like in a symphony hall. They light gigs to look badass, not to look good in photos.
Don't really know how the fuck you came up with 18-55 f/3.5-5.6, considering I don't even own any lens wider than 24...if you must know, the lens I used for that particular concert was the 24-105 IS f/4L, and I had spent 2 hours trying to convince the club owner to let me set up flashes there, but all I could get a permission to use was on camera flash, so yeah, I made best with what I could. But last I checked, those concert photos weren't the only ones I've took, I don't recall there's a rule out there saying I must post every single good photo I take just so I can impress n00bs online.
You've never shot full frame, have you? or tried to do closeups of band members, especially the ones in the back, have you?
You also fail at assessing light, go ahead and ask around, you'd need f/2.8, ISO 6400 just to get fast enough shutter speed in some reception halls, and those aren't even supposed to be dark, are you really surprised that concerts in dark, smoky jazz clubs are 2-3 stops less light? get real.
No, it's not, a dedicated macro lens is much better than a reversed lens. Your little setup can't compete with the likes of the MP-E 65.
Like it or not, faster glass is made for a reason, and people buy it for a reason.
You said ISO25k. That was either a Typo or you're wasting the "Faster glass".
Any way I have sang in a rock band for 2 years paid about between £40-100 per member so I know dives a lot of dives. I also specialised in gig photography for about 5 years now.
I have a portable lighting set up in case there isn't a lighting guy in said dives like I said before, in the image link posted below (an off cut from a shoot)you can see the Soft box on the floor, next to the smoke machine, so that the smoke is caught in the light.
As for clubs, there really is no excuse to be lazy with your lighting, you are a photographer of course a venue doesn't want flash get a steady fold away kit turn up early and set up with the band.
Also reason I came up with that lens isn't to say that's the lens you used, those are the settings you had on the lens you used, would have been equally used on a cheaper lens for less effort. Perfect example of a lens capable of that is the kit lens on a lot of the images you had up.
Gigs are grotty places and if that lens is an expensive one, which it probably is compared to the kit lens for all of 60 quid getting smoke and detritus in it is bad.
As for full frame, I was trained on standard SLR cameras and have darkroom training, 3 years from A level to Degree. We were told you get higher grades for self developed photos so that's what I worked with, until about my second to last year when I made the Digital switch due to work load and lack of time to get in a dark room for a few hours.
Full frame does let in more light though so why that would be a down side I don't know. But yes I do shoot on crop, I prefer it for ranged shots and reverse docked macro shooting.
I the dark smoky filled room... I have posted it for you here. [link] It shows the lightin set up, not the best of the day not even in final output but the smoke is clear and at the right hand side I took another and that was better but for the purposes of this post that suffices.
Now I have never shot at 3200+, Because if a job won't pay me, I don't turn up. If they don't let me have my say, my camera and kit go home and the client covers the cost of travel pre-booking including site recon.
It's all marked out no fuss no muss. For both my band and my Photography
Yes faster glass is nice to have, yes they let in more light, and yes they are better for output, but it's an expensive paper weight when you go to lets say a rock gig, in a small pub where people spill beer everywhere and your being paid next to nothing.
One drop of juice in the lens, smoke sucked in, a knock or a bump by a punter, good bye nearly 1k, Cheap steady lighting kit 90 quid 2 lights portable, Kit lens 60 quid.
Job done. Someone writes them off no insurance premiums need to be raised. Just shell out the peanuts to buy more.
How bad would it be if you tripped over, this bad? [link]
Seriously even with insurance getting a hit like that will make your heart sink. At least body's are durable - no lenses are air tight.
You know that most venues and clubs don't allow the use of flashes, right? But thanks for saying me, and most band photographers are lazy, much appreciated. You have few clients who allow you to use flash (or setup continues lights for that matter, as there's usually no space for them), good for you, most club owners don't (same evasive answers priests give you for not allowing flash inside a church). If you're rich enough to have the luxury of choosing which jobs to accept, well, great to be you, most of us aren't that lucky, and need to pay for a house and put food on the table, pay bills...
What does singing in a rock concert have to do with photography or light?
Full frame doesn't let in more light, wtf are you smoking? at the same ISO, SS and aperture value, the exposure would be the same, don't believe me? go try it yourself.
I said you'd sometimes need ISO25k at F/4 to get fast enough shutter speed to freeze action (or you'd have a really hard time getting decent keepers). Obviously if you're using faster glass you'd need lower ISO, no one's debating that. I mentioned FF cause it has a wider FoV, meaning the need of longer glass to game the same framing.
I still don't see where the fuck you came up with that, my lens doesn't go as wide as 18, I've shot all my concert photos at f/4, and I've gone up to 105mm in some shots. SO yeah, how is that possible to do with an 18-55? please enlighten me. And what kit lens are you talking about me using on a lot of my photos? I don't even own a kit lens :/ most my shots are taken either with a Canon 24-105 IS f/4L (which is an L series glass), or the Tamron 90mm macro (which is SP series glass, Tamron's pro line), I don't see how any of those are a kit lens. Or are you referring to the fact that the 24-105 is bundled with the 5D series cameras? It's a $1149 lens [link] As far as I know, I have 2 photos with the 35-80, and a couple more with a p&s camera :/
That photo is way too dark, just so you know.
I've shot bands for over a year now, in the worst of situations and my glass is fine, it's called being extra careful, and servicing your gear. A lens won't break if you trip and fall, worst case is if it hits front on, and the front element is damaged, but that's why you should be using a lens hood. Just so you know, L glass doesn't break that easily, it can take a lot of abuse, that's what it's made for, and a 600mm L definitely won't break from just tripping over, this is a lens made to be taken outdoors, and into the wild.
orangefruitsFeatured By OwnerJan 8, 2013Hobbyist Photographer
A 7 year warreaty, crikey. That seems like a good idea but for me that just wouldn't work, I need wide apetures. Like you mentioend about the primes, it's what attracts me to the dedicated 70-200mm lenses because that have pretty wide apetures.
That depends on how "professional" the person is. One of the leading causes of photographers going bankrupt is over investing in gear before they can afford it. While I too suggest investing in good equipment they should be looking at their cash flow before buying expensive equipment. For the price of a single 85mm F1.2 they could buy 2x 85mm F1.8 along with a backup body and still have $$ left over. To a budding event photographer having the redundancy in gear is actually more valuable than an extra stop of light.
Personally my advice usually is for a completely green photographer to aim at getting the key lenses as the cheaper variations to begin with. So for Canon that means: for example: 35mm F2.0, 50mm F1.4, 85mm F1.8, and a 70-200 F4. Then as business picks up they should begin investing in the higher level versions of each lens respectively: 35mm F1.4, 50mm F1.2, 85mm F1.2, and 70-200mm F2.8. This means they grow as their income grows so they don't over extend and also end up with a backup of every major lens in the event of equipment failure or accidental damage mid event.
I'd actually suggest newbie photographers to combine third party glass, since it's usually cheaper than OEM, and very close in quality (sometimes surpassing it), so for Canon I'd say Canon 35 2.0, Sigma 50 1.4, Canon 85 1.8 and Sigma 70-200 2.8...that way they'd only need to update the 35 (to Sigma 35 1.4), and 85 (to Sigma 85 1.4, unless that 1/3 of a stop is crucial). Maybe later down the line also get the Canon 70-200 2.8 if they shoot a lot at 2.8.
orangefruitsFeatured By OwnerJan 7, 2013Hobbyist Photographer
gah, I'm really looking at getting a 70-200mm. Been frustrated about which one to get. I think I will start with the 70-200 f4 from Canon to see if the focal length is of any use and then maybe upgrade at a later date. But for an extra £200 I can get a 2.8 from Sigma, that really seems worth it.
Yeah, I'd say to get the Sigma if it's only 200 difference, that extra stop is really worth it, and from f/4 onwards it's just as good as the Canon. At 2.8 it's slightly soft, but still very usable, stop down 1/3 of a stop, and it's tact sharp. I'd say the Sigma can be easily used professionally even. If 2.8 sharpness is crucial to you, I'd actually suggest the Tamron over the Canon, it's slightly sharper at 2.8 (according to charts, not really noticeable unless you pixel peep), and the VC on it is much better than the one on the Canon. I had the opportunity to test one from camera.co.il (Israeli store), and compare it to the Canon...yeah, built quality is amazing, and it's weather sealed, plus it's a wooping $1000 cheaper here, no more lust for the Canon, and now lusting over the Tamron.
That's the old version, the new version is very quick (it's only a tad slower than the Canon version). Honestly, in normal shooting situations, you wouldn't even notice it, you'd be too busy taking photos. I only noticed a slight difference in speed, and that's with the lens going from infinity to MFD, and we're talking at a very small fraction of a second here.
MichaelRowlandsonFeatured By OwnerJan 6, 2013Professional Photographer
If you already have a steady income from it then I would invest in the better glass. For me it just never made sense on buying the cheaper versions when ultimately I knew 6 months later I would have the L version.
But like you said which I agree with, if you don't have the clientele or the steady income then go cheap. Everyone has to start somewhere.
orangefruitsFeatured By OwnerJan 6, 2013Hobbyist Photographer
I invest in the cheaper versions first to make sure I actually need the gear, I am looking at getting a Canon 70-200 and am seriously considering the cheapest version first to make sure I will actually find the focal length useful for the work I do.
Renting good equipment, especially for a week is incredibly expensive, at least it is here in the UK. I had always considered renting as a good way of finding out how easy it was to get to grips with the gear and understand how it works and see if, ultimately, I'd what I want to get. However, it's just throwing money down the drain, especially when most shops allow returns anyway. If it's a good bit of gear (lens; camera body) and you own it, in a flash, you could sell it. That's the bonus.
Second body is definitely a good idea, even if it's a somewhat cheaper body.
But, it's going to depend a great deal on the type of gig. In general though you're going to want to have appropriate flashes and a light meter. The sports photographers have me in awe the way that they'll typically just look at a scene and know what the exposure should be. But, I suppose, I could do that as well, if I wasn't so concerned with the high lights and the dynamic range.
I personally have the 70-200 F2.8L IS, and it's an incredible lens in pretty much every respect. I can see why some people suggest that it's Canon's best lens. The only downsides are that it's a brick and rather intimidating, if you go around with it people will assume that you're a pro.
I'd go with the F4L IS over the F2.8L non-IS though as you'll gain more shooting opportunities like that. But, with the lens you're not likely to be able to count on shooting without a tripod. And bear in mind that you can't use a teleconverter with the F4 version if you want to still have autofocus. (Or was that you only have autofocus at the widest aperture?)
Also, make sure you've got a good camera strap. I haven't gotten mine yet, but I have [link] on order. They look like an absolute god send for those managing a larger body/lens combination.
It's going to depend on the situation, but most of the time, the lesser lenses are going to be sufficient. You don't really need IS if you're always working off a tripod and the F4L is going to be a better choice if you're likely to be walking around.
The only time that you really have to have the F2.8 is if you've decided to connect a tele-converter on the end. Then, IIRC, you can maintain a bit of the AF, whereas with the F4 you get none at all.,
orangefruitsFeatured By OwnerJan 7, 2013Hobbyist Photographer
I didn't know that about the lack of AF on the F4 with a tele-convertor. I do a lot of moving around at gigs, mainly to stay out of the way of the performers as I generally ask permission to get on stage before hand.
Yep, there's other charts depending upon which tele-converter you decide to go with. They all affect image quality to a lesser or greater extent. But, as long as you do the research these are all known problems.
To be fair, sports photographers are generally shooting in very familiar lighting situations. In addition, when your subject is more or less the same each time, as in you've been shooting soccer for months, it's easy to get a feel for what settings you should start at.
Practice makes perfect though, as always. Try it! Go out of your way to shoot a familiar subject in different locations and if you keep the time of day more or less the same, you'll get a feel for guessing the exposure.
"To be fair, sports photographers are generally shooting in very familiar lighting situations."
Seriously? Football stadium: no roof, and lets in natural light; basketball stadium: completely indoors and artificially lit; equestrian sports: either indoors and quite badly lit, with dark backgrounds, or completely outdoors; winter sports outdoors and if with snow a lot of reflected light to compensate for. I could go on...
Very true - I shoot a ton of sports, I can tell you within 1/3 stop of exposure the light level on every field, gym or hockey rink in my coverage area (and most within 15-20 minutes outside my coverage area).
I still double check before each game though, you never know when someone changed out the lights - I've seen minor changes add or remove 1/2 stop without any other change.