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FEEDBACK – Niall Lee, North West England

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Contributor – Niall Lee

Location – North West England

Studying – Completed AS Photography, now freelance photographer!

We Are The Ocean, Liverpool Arts Club Loft, 20th May 2015. Playing their headline in an intimate warmup show before festival season.

We Are The Ocean, Liverpool Arts Club Loft, 20th May 2015. Playing their headline in an intimate warmup show before festival season. 1/30 f4 ISO 250

Good creative shot from what looks like an intimate gig, judging by how close the crowd are to the band, and the lack of space in the pit!  Flash gun used with a slower shutter speed – the flash light is freezing the motion, however any available while the shutter is still open captures a bit of movement in Liam Cromby’s arm and guitar (guitarist on far left).  The flash gun might be a little too powerful, judging by the bleached out skin tones – maybe reducing the flash power would have produced more skin tone, just using it to fill light a little?  Being very picky – the microphone on the top left of the shot is a little distracting – some photographers might photoshop that out of the way.

Brawlers, Y Not Festival, 31st July 2015.

Brawlers, Y Not Festival, 31st July 2015. 1/80 f2.8 ISO 1600

Great shot of Brawlers, with confident use of shutter speed – fast enough for the band to be sharp, but allowing some motion in Matthew Wright’s hands while playing the guitar.  Colour tones in the image are balanced and not over manipulated, with the blues and greens working well in difficult lighting conditions.  A difficulty of shooting on some stages is having the monitors (speakers on the floor) in shot – it would be interesting to see what a tighter crop would create in this image.

Circa Waves, The Ritz Manchester, 18th April 2015. Playing the last date of their April Headline UK Tour.

Circa Waves, The Ritz Manchester, 18th April 2015. Playing the last date of their April Headline UK Tour. 1/125 f2.8 ISO 1000

While some photographers complain of “shooting from the mixing desk”, the crowd shot style image like this seems to becoming more and more popular these days!  There is a little noise / grain on the bottom of the image, but if anything it adds to the feel of the shot.  As with the previous image, it would be interesting to see what a tighter crop would do to the image – we don’t see enough of the balcony on the right of the image for it to make a huge impact in the composition, so maybe a change of framing may add to the image?

Peace, Liverpool Sound City, 24th May 2015.

Peace, Liverpool Sound City, 24th May 2015. 1/160 f2.8 ISO 3200

Interesting shot on stage, capturing the band and crowd.  The only thing I can say on this image is that maybe a lower angle could have added a little more to the composition of the shot?

Johnny Marr, Y Not Festival 2015, 2nd August 2015.

Johnny Marr, Y Not Festival 2015, 2nd August 2015. 1/500 f2.8 ISO 640

A different technique to the previous shot, with the crowd out of focus.  The shot is well composed using the rule of thirds (see our tutorial on the Rule of Thirds here), and you have captured the shot perfectly when the light is reflecting of his guitar.  The lighting behind the crowd adds to the image, with a “Bokeh” effect due to the aperture used resulting in a shallow depth of field.

A great set of images!  A few tips for future shoots:

  • If you need to use a flash gun (and the venue permits it!), try reducing the power or bouncing the light / diffusing it, to give a more balanced light to the image
  • Change your body angle on different shots – either crouch lower (on stage) or try some shots looking up at stage.
  • Try cropping closer on some shots, isolating the musicians from their surroundings and distractions.

We look forward to seeing more images soon!

Read our interview with Niall Lea here!

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Twitter – @NiallLeaPhoto

Website – www.nialllea.com

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