Music Photography Workshop (Day 1): 1-On-1 Lecture [★]

Sunday, February 14, 2016



Before this workshop, I knew Kris Rocha mostly as a concert photographer. She has worked for tons of shows already - local and international acts alike. Her photos are just beyond amazing. I am very honored to be one of her students for this workshop, and I was eager to learn more about music photography from her.

And so day one of my most awaited workshop came. My meeting with Kris was set at Top Hat Studio in Timog, QC. The setup was not formal at all, and so it helped me to relax a bit. I got my phone and opened up Google Notes, ready to take down notes. 〆(・∀・@) With her Mac laptop open, Kris started with her lecture on the basics of music photography.

Since I already knew the basics of photography, we already skipped that part and went straight ahead to music photography. Below are some of the points I have learned from her lecture:

  • Start local. If you are to introduce yourself as 'a music photographer based in Manila', you should have local acts covered on your portfolio. 
  • Pre-Event Preparations. If you've been booked to shoot an event, have all the info you need beforehand: your purpose of shooting, the artist, the event, etc.
  • Shooting for Local vs Foreign Acts. Apparently there are differences on how you shoot for local and international acts.
  • Shooting Etiquettes. There are some unspoken rules amongst photographers that you need to know to gain everyone's respect in the field.
  • Camera Settings. She shared her SOPs for her gear setup when preparing for concerts.
  • Shooting Techniques. Apparently there are lots of ways to capture an image of an artist/band on stage.
These are just some of the main points that Kris highlighted in her lecture. I was blown away. And I thought music photography was only about shooting during the concert itself! How wrong I was on that! Concert photography is just one part of music photography. The latter encompasses a wider scope because it also includes pre-concert and post-concert events (artist arrival, press conferences, show guestings, soundcheck, backstage portrait).

My favorite part of the lecture was on the shooting techniques. It's all about being in the right position/angle and shooting at the perfect timing. I actually reviewed some of the photos I took during previous concerts and I could now see the things to improve on them. :p

Our session took four hours all in all. There were just a lot of things to be discussed, and she was able to share the lessons that she learned from all of her experiences working for different events.

I wanted to turn into a sponge and just absorb everything that was said during the lecture. Good thing I got some notes that I took down so that I could get back to them in case I would need to remind myself of those pointers. I'm excited to apply those techniques in action!

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