Photos at Live Rock Concerts
I have been trying to shoot rock concerts for a couple of years now. I have always been unsuccesful. The bands I try to shoot do not like us to use flashes. I usually use 800 speed film. I have just recently bought a Canon Rebel 2000. Is there any tips you can give me for shooting these shows. I almost always get blured pictures because I don't use a flash.
I remember seeing this problem addressed here in mid-November 2000. Click on "show Q&A from last 3 months" or "All Q&A", and look for pictures of Merle Haggard shot by Mike Walters.
In the typical concert situation the evaluative meter over exposes the performer. The performer is brightly lit by spotlights (no need for a flash), but the evaluative meter averages the exposure with the very dark background. Set your Rebel 2000 for Partial Metering at the center instead of Center Weighted or Evaluative, and meter off the spot-lit performers. Use Tv (shutter priority) mode to set the shutter fast enough for hand held shooting and/or to freeze the on-stage movement. Don't shoot in M (manual) because the Rebel 2000 defaults to Center Weighted metering in this mode.
I just have one more hint that I've never tried, but in theory sounds good:
I've been told to get there early, and while the performer is warming up, meter off his face. Note the meter readings, and set your camera to manual on these settings - then leave them alone for the rest of the night.
In the event that the lighting changes, you may need to meter again, but so long as your first reading was good, the rest of your photos will be good.
I must admit that this is putting all your eggs into one basket, but this was a professional photojournalist for 15 years that told me that trick. I'm willing to be that he rarely if ever, got it wrong.
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