How to Make Concert Photography Look Professional
Concert photography is a specific field that requires both particular skills and specific technical parameters of the shot. There are many points that distinguish a concert from other types of photography environments. Taking a good shot of a live music show is among the most difficult tasks in photography, but also among the most satisfying. This is because it is very likely to obtain a truly unique shot as a result, especially when you do it like a pro, because what happens on the stage is dynamic.
Step 1 - Get as Close as Possible
If you really want to take some good concert photographs, you should try getting into the photographers' pit in front of the stage, or at least in the fan pit right behind the fence. You can try getting a photo pass from a photo agency, if you start working for one, from a local media, or just try to negotiate with the security guards.
Step 2 - Choose the Right Equipment
Even though some compact cameras can do the job, it is hard to find a sufficiently good one for your goals. Use semi-professional, as there are already quite affordable models that can give you high quality photographs. Try to find a lens with a zoom glass as bright as possible. A cheap solution is a 50 mm f1.8 lens, it will also increase the shutterspeed, as the camera will get more light. Good parameters for shutterspeed are 1/125th or higher. Depending on the light, set the ISO to 1600 if there isn't enough light, or lower in case there is plenty of it.
Step 3 - Adjust your Position to get a Better View
Remember that your goal is to capture the energy and/or the emotions on the stage. To get to the right shot, take loads of photographs. Professional photographers usually take hundreds of photos to choose a few really good ones. Move back and forth (if your position allows it), observe the band to learn their behavior and stage habits and shoot the best of them.