January 21, 2011

KVMR Celtic Festival part II- Musicians

 One of the best things about photographing a Celtic Festival is the music. No matter what I'm shooting, all day long, I'm taking photos with an amazing soundtrack going on around me. The KVMR Celtic Festival has musicians from around the globe performing on several stages, non-stop, throughout the day.
 I'm pretty lucky. As the "official event photographer" I get unfettered access to backstage and behind the scenes. Because of this I'm able to shoot from all angles and use every lens in the bag. I even get up on roof tops to get an over-all scene.
  As with anything else I'm trying to keep my backgrounds uncluttered and to catch defining moments during a performance. Because musicians tend to move around non stop it's essential to boost up the ISO and keep a really fast shutter speed so I can freeze the action. I try to stay at least at 1/500th of a second. I do experiment with slower speeds to catch movement etc. but in general I'm trying to get sharp images. I shoot a lot and experiment with compositions. Usually I use the stage lighting/ ambient light as is but will sometimes throw a flash in when the lighting is pretty poor. This can be a pain for the musicians and some flat out don't allow it! So I keep it limited.
 I have to thank Ed Rotberg for the use of his fish-eye lens! You'll notice several of these taken with that.

January 14, 2011

KVMR Celtic Festival- Reenactment Group Portraits

Happy New Year!

 First of all I want to thank my friend Glen Hall for kicking me in the butt and getting me back to blogging.

 I've got a lot of assignments from the past few months to share. I'm starting with one of my favorites. I've been photographing the Celtic Festival for KVMR radio in Nevada City for about ten years now. I've been more and more excited each year as my skills grow and change and I'll rue the day I don't get to come back! They have a new promoter next year and I've already secured the job again so I'm thrilled!

 I'm going to share these in three different posts starting with the reenactment groups.

 Along with the world class musicians and fantastic artisans, there are several Celtic  groups, clans, etc. that set up, and live in, camps that emulate the time period their particular group represents. There are groups "from" Scotland, England, Ireland, and even the Fairy kingdom.
 A band of pirates invaded the scene this year as well!
  It's a lot of fun. The actors never break form and are in awe of the amazing modern contraption I use to steal their likenesses with.

 As you can guess there are endless portrait opportunities. Colors and textures abound. I get to use every lens and technique I can come up with.

  I literally get lost in this make believe world for two days and am always sad when it ends. Music fills the air constantly, people dance about, a patron meanders by chomping on a turkey leg. The Nevada County Fairground is about as lovely a place as you could find for an event like this as well.

 Ok, enough talk,  here are some photos!!