I’ve been lucky enough to shoot many different sort of events and subject matter. Every now and then the opportunity presents it self to do something a little different. Last weekend I was given that opportunity in the form of Ballring 2012 a annual circus convention hosted by Purple Mermaid Society at Birmingham university and is open to the public.
I got involved with this as I have recently joined the society my self so of course when I arrived at the event I had to take my camera. I had every intension of taking part and enjoying the event but “poi” my circus discipline I practice is my hobby and photography is my passion so you can guess witch one took over I didn’t put my camera down the entire day long.
The reason I say its a little different is because subject matter unlike normal events where you focus on people and shows this was more like showing activities that are fast action. To me it felt like a cross between shooting sport and event photography. I was presented with a number of challenges.
The main thing I needed to do was keep the shutter speed up to capture the fast action. Easy enough but for the lighting was interesting to say the least we was inside with unbelievably strong light coming in through the windows but casting strong shadows inside where there was very poor light the contrast range was black and white bad. I’m used to poor light but to keep my shutter fast enough I had to push even what Nikon can handle with high ISO performance. I’d had like to have used flash witch would of froze the action but doing that I know I’d have distracted all the performers and I wanted appear small and be un-intrusive so I could get more candid shots. I was aiming to try and be unnoticed wile doing this however I observed another photographer doing the opposite to me he was approaching subjects and taking with them before taking there photos I’d love to know who he was so I could see his results I often wonder if I should you that approach more but I believe there needs to be a balance between that method and my proffered ninjiesk approach though I did get a interesting photo of him taking a photo of some one taking a photo I love meta things like that.
The day ended with a stage show open stage as a warm up called Renegade and then a professional show dubbed the Pro-Show. This was business as usual for me as I’ve shot so many stage shows. I used my normal combination of Nikons high ISO and the SB-900 set to AF assist only as it can auto focus in a hart beat in almost no light. I did run in to a problem I’ve never had before. I didn’t have my lens hood on me its been coming really louse on my main work horse lenses but didn’t think it would make much difference how wrung was I I’ve never has so much lens flare before ruined a good number of frames lesson learned use a lens hood they do work.
I’m not sure who I’m about to quote but I herd another photographer talk about this and its so true wanted to repeated just wish I could remember where I herd it. A camera is like a Key it gets you into places you can’t normally go at this event I had just that I ended up with possibly the best seat in the house. Thank you very much purple Mermaid for that not that I could really watch the show properly witch in a way is my point. Your camera is your key in but you then have a big responsibility to deliver your viewers and the people you working for expect results. Any one can go to the show but its up to you to show people what they can’t normally see be it shots from the front row in more detail then they can see or be it back stage make the most of it. When in that position remember how lucky you are and don’t was it use it to its fullest potential and get the shots because remember if you that key and you don’t deliver you’ll soon fine the locks changed.
As always my sets are up on my flickr for all to enjoy..