#9: Try and book a real photoshoot.

An other item I can check off the list!

I said on my first post that I still often have the “impostor feeling” when it comes to photography… Despite some nice achievements, like being published in a magazine or being “explored” a few times on Flickr, I still lack confidence in my photographic work.

Photography is like is everything else: it takes a lot of work and practice. But between university and my full-time job, I sometimes spend weeks without even touching my camera!

Needless to say I was very excited when my brother-in-law asked me to photograph his band’s first live gig… Finally, an opportunity to get my camera out of its bag!

I was a bit nervous when I walked into the bar where they played. I had not used my camera in weeks, I am only starting to properly learn portrait photography and I had never shot a live performance before… But they say there’s nothing like experience to learn, right?

It was indeed a good learning experience… Since I knew the band, and because they were playing in a small bar on a Wednesday night, I was left with lot of space and freedom to work. At some point, I even jumped on the stage with them!

I was quite happy with my effort when I looked at the photos “on camera” right after the show. I was still happy when I reviewed them a first time on my computer, but after that I started noticing every little things that had gone wrong. Some pictures were “burned”, others were too grainy to be used and many of them were not sharp enough or not focused at the right place.

Collage Band

I can certainly blame my camera for the grain… I still use a beginner level camera and I really have to crank up the ISO when I work in low light, especially when I’m not using a tripod. But the rest is lesson learned! I am more careful with my camera settings when I move around in between shots to avoid “burning” images or underexposing them; I learned that using the Live View function can be good in certain circumstances to avoid unsharp images; and I’m learning more and more “where to focus” and when it’s good to use auto-focus instead of doing it manually.

I’ve had the opportunity to do more portrait photography since the gig and I think I have improved and I am getting better at it. I still have lot to learn though!

When it comes to photography, one never stops learning…

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