Tip: Photographing a Dance Show

photo by Gabre Cameron

In 2010 I covered a dance show for the University (of the West Indies) Dance Society at Phillip Sherlock. At the time I had a kit lens (18-55mm f/3.5-5) and a very small memory card (8GB) which impacted how many photos I could take. I limited myself to 5 photos a piece, with a few exceptions.

Last month however, I covered another dance show, this time for Praise Academy of Dance, with a faster lens (17-50mm f/2.8) and a larger memory card (32GB). I was like a kid in a candy store. I ended up with 900+ photos. Most of which were repetitive.

After the fact I realized I should have applied what I learnt from UDS's show to Praise Academy's show. I should have:

  1. Sat through the entire dress rehearsal to familiarize myself with the various dance pieces.
  2. Done some test shots from various locations, during the dress rehearsal, to see where gave me the best vantage point(s).
  3. Restricted the amount of photos I took for each dance piece.

Though I forgot to take into consideration the 3 points stated above I never forget that dance shows, and the like, take place in dimly lit auditoriums.

The Business of Design and Offering Discounts

A few weeks ago I read "10 Mistakes Designers Make with Clients" by Preston Lee. Preston was extremely insightful and covered several areas. One of which hit me for 6 - Offering Discounts. He says "Discounts are for grocery stores with rotting produce... Your design isn’t old. It isn’t rotting. It isn’t yesterday’s hot item...It tells your customers that you are not in high demand and you are desperate for some business."

I mused on this for a few days. I even discussed it with my Accountant / Financial Advisor and friend and he agreed. Preston Lee was right, when supermarkets sell products at a discounted rate they still make a profit. When I give a discount as a designer I make a loss.

Very often I'd give my customers discounts but couldn't understand why they kept asking for more, even when my rates were below my competitors. I was sending the wrong message.

No DSLR, Just an iPod Touch for 28 Days

Day 16 of 28: Little Farmer Joe

Photography has been a hobby if mine since 2006, though I never actually own a camera. When I got married I stared using my wife's point and shoot. She gave me tips and mentioned things I've never heard about, like the rule of thirds - things she learnt at art school. Before you knew it we were competing.

It's now 2012 and I now have access to a Pentax K10D and a Canon Rebel T2i. However, the camera that's always with me is my iPod Touch. Inspired by Chase Jarvis, I decided to do a 28 Day iPodography Challenge in February, of this year.

Here's what I learned...
prev | next