Lens advice please

April 16th, 2010
So my flower vendor at work has three, maybe four bands he is involved with that he wants me to photograph and of which I am scared stiff because what if i fail miserably? This is my reputation on the line as well as the guy's who is hiring me. My question is is what kind of lens should I have. I have one good lens: a canon 50mm 1.4 lens. Is there any lens/es that you would advise I have on hand and as well what is the best f/stop , lens speed, etc. to use for low light shooting. Any advice whatsoever however minimal would be greatly appreciated. It will be another month before we get together to discuss what we are going to do.
April 16th, 2010
For bands i would suggest a wide angle lens. The 50mm will be great for portraits of each band member but for the shot of the whole band plus the audience you're gonna need to get pretty wide.
Fish eye would be a solid effect as well.
April 16th, 2010
a great all around lens is the Canon 28-70 2.8L
Very fast, great range, perfect for band shots, weddings, portraits, etc.
If you can afford it, stick with the L series lenses.
The quality you can't beat, and you won't find better low light glass.
April 16th, 2010
April 16th, 2010
i'm with kevin. you will have that on ALL the time.

btw. my favorite quote

"if you try and fail, you are no worse than if you never tried at all"

live by it.
April 16th, 2010
oohh!!! i will be able to afford it; the canon lens, and a uv filter ( better to protect my 1300 dollar investment) after 2 more paychecks. It will wipe out my savings but it will be worth the investment. My question is is will i need my tripod or would a mono pod be easier to have on hand and what about my flash ? Shooting at the 2.8 will be great for low light but wont that make for a shallow depth of field? What is a good f/stop for low light that will allow for a shot of the whole band plus the audience? Lots of questions......
April 16th, 2010
Are you photographing them while they are playing? And are they playing local rather than larger venues? If so, then its a hard thing to shoot, but very rewarding. Personally I would forget a mono or tripod, you will need to be able to move freely and often, plus if you are on a speed that you think you will need this to help with the exposure then they will be blurred anyway because the band are moving.
Any lens, f2.8 are the best, because they allow for a wider exposure, a wide lens and something like a 80-200mm is good, then you can do portraits as well as wide pics of the band together. When doing portraits I tend to do spot metering on aperture priority, shooting mannual is hard until you get the practice because the lights are always changing, and its too hard to keep up. (unless you set it on something like 60th sec, f2.8 and hope for the best?).
Take lots of memory cards with you, as with local bands, be prepared to miss a lot of images due to such low light, and please dont use flash, it kills any atmostphere stone dead!

Is there any way you can do a practice run before you take the job paid? Give you a chance to get things 'just right'. Best of luck, and enjoy! Its one of my all time fav types of photography, even though am not brilliant, I always feel chuffed if I get a few good images :-)
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