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Musician B&W





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Behind The Lens

This photo is taken in Belgrade, Serbia. A band was doing some sort of promotion of their album, by playing in the central city street, Knez Mihajlova, which is known for many quality artists who entertain people everyday.
It is taken midday, on the weekend, so there were many people around and it was not so easy getting a good angle for the shot.
It is all natural light, but still pretty challenging, since the day was a bit cloudy. I was at F5.6 (lowest for the lens I had, at 142mm), and to keep the ISO low, I had to shoot at 1/60s.
It was just my usual street roaming, looking for interesting scenes, so I only used Sony A6000 with Sony 55-210mm F4.5-F6.3. I usually go for a zoom lens when it is midday, since the light is either very harsh if it is sunny, or dull if it is cloudy. My idea, when shooting in those conditions, is that I concentrate on details, shapes, faces...
Sometimes I just pick up my camera and go for a walk, looking for interesting city scenes. So, coming to this street I saw big crowd and heard some very good music. I managed to get to the front and I saw this band, all dressed up, like for a fancy concert, and this charismatic guy was singing. I had to take a few shoots, and luckily in this one, he gave a little smile to the audience.
When shooting in RAW, you need to work in post. I made some basic adjustments in Lightroom (white/black points, clarity, some brushing to enhance the face...), and then I transferred to Photoshop, where I worked on details, sharpening and B&W conversion, with vignetting in the end. I have a color version of this as well, where I cloned out the that part of the wall behind the guy on the left, which was much bigger distraction in that version.
In my camera bag
I have a very modest camera, Sony A6000 (APS-C sensor) and only 2 lenses: kit lens, 16-50mm F3.5-F5.6 and Sony 55-210mm F4.5-F6.3. I also use some cheap variable ND filter, mostly for night and blue hour photography, because it gives me much more control of the shutter speed in conditions where you need longer exposure. So far, this setup has very well suited my style, considering I mostly work on city or travel photography, and the lightweight of this gear is something very important when you walk around all day.
I think this is a very nice example that you don't need to have the best gear or great conditions to capture a good shot. Use what you have, look around you, there are many interesting things on every step! Read the conditions and adapt, if the light is not so good, go for B&W, or try to get closer to the subject. It is also very important to know your camera, to know when to use certain settings, and to understand how you can get a better shot with the equipment you have. Be patient and work on yourself, great shots will come, I promise you that! :)

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