Photographing performing drummers

rhumbagirl

Senior Member
@rhumbagirl I hope y'all find a way to make your look unique. If you have control over the stage lighting, stage positioning, clothing, that would help. And let the photographer get up on the stage and embed himself into the scene. Not only do you get better pics, the photographer's enjoyment will elevate his work.
Our photographer is a big guy, so I'll have to convince him to do that. Do you recommend a hand gimbal for shooting close-up video like this? Which do you recommend? The Lafgur Pro from Walmart is only $30. The upper end gimbals seem to start around $130 (Osmo, Benro).
 

cbphoto

Platinum Member
Our photographer is a big guy, so I'll have to convince him to do that. Do you recommend a hand gimbal for shooting close-up video like this? Which do you recommend? The Lafgur Pro from Walmart is only $30. The upper end gimbals seem to start around $130 (Osmo, Benro).
I don’t know about the Walmart version, but they have a great return policy, so maybe give it a try. I got a marketing email a few weeks ago from DJI (they make drones, I have a Phantom) and they’ve introduced some new gimbals.

I’d take a look at the OM-5 for smartphones. I like the idea of using a smartphone on stage due to space constraints (the triple-lens phones like the newer iPhones have a nice wide angle lens). Everything is smaller and then the camera can get close to the subject without the bulk of larger cameras. The rig would also be inherently light, which would allow me to shoot longer without fatigue. Plus, swapping out phones looks like it‘d be a snap.


If you wanted to use a DSLR, the DJI Ronin looks good. A friend had a previous version and the stabilization was really impressive. In the past I’ve used a Glide-Cam + Sony EX-3 and the rig’s balance was done by hand and was very tedious (and it became heavy after about 15 minutes of handling, thus the vests). Rigs like this Ronin appear to have overcome this hassle with electronics and precise motors. If so, changing lenses or zooming in/out (i.e., changing the balance point) would not be a problem.


Benefits of a smartphone:
Light: can be handled for long time without fatigue​
Small: can get in tight if phone has WA lens.​
Captures sound: easily sync’d to any recorded audio​
Naturally deep depth of field: Everything in focus​

Benefits of DSLR:
Greater dynamic range, especially if Log/RAW mode is available: more visible detail in shadows & highlights, making the drummer look fantastic​
Wider choice of optics: greater variety in visual material​
Better optics: better image quality, but I think this only counts if the video does not have many quick edits​
It’s a camera: it only has one function and won’t get interrupted by a phone call or message (gawd would that suck)​

And @Supergrobi , any thoughts on the matter? What say ye?
 

Supergrobi

Technical Supervisor
Staff member
any thoughts on the matter? What say ye?
Dude, honestly, you are the pro. I might be the guy able to make things look good in the post production for print or screen, but for production itself you - honestly - are the most experienced person I'm aware of. So be sure I'm sucking in every word you post on this thread like a blotting paper.

giphy.gif
 

cbphoto

Platinum Member
Dude, honestly, you are the pro. I might be the guy able to make things look good in the post production for print or screen, but for production itself you - honestly - are the most experienced person I'm aware of. So be sure I'm sucking in every word you post on this thread like a blotting paper.
I thought you would have shot a dozen videos in your sweet studio by now (If I ever get to [northern] Germany, it’s on my sight-seeing list).

Update: I just purchased a DJI OM5. Our bandleader will be recording us in a studio while video-ing with smartphones. He’ll edit footage and mix in the recordings or promo use. I’ll post a review afterwards.
 

Otto

Platinum Member
Do we know what the customer is wanting the photos for?

I can think of several reasons I might want photos of a music project I am in...and I would be outlining to the photographer what the intention is then getting out of their way....hmmm...kinda like engaging a musical artist... : )
 
Top