Festival photography seems pretty foolproof….until you add beer, low light and crowd surfing to the mix (and who wants the same photos as everyone else, anyway?). That’s why we love our analog Lomography cameras: they’re lightweight, easy to use and give our Bonnaroo memories a classic vintage look. Combine one with these photography tips from Lomography and you’ll have the ultimate festival album.
Prepare for a crowd
Here’s some simple festival math: the closer you are to the stage, the more elbows you’re going to encounter. Pick out a camera that’s lightweight and easy to lug around but can handle different lighting situations. For a versatile camera, try the Lomo LC-A camera family, which gives you options for setting your aperture and has some rad added tricks like multiple exposures and a selfie-ready cable release thread.
Don’t be scared of the flash
Evening shows are what photographers call “low-light” situations, and usually a flash is required to capture a shot that’s not a total blur-fest. Opt for a camera that has a powerful flash and use a fast-ISO film, then get as close to the action as you can, hold your camera steady, point, and shoot. Try out the Diana Mini camera family—most models come with an attachable flash.
But turn it off and see what happens
Shut off your flash and aim your camera where the lights are. If you can adjust your shutter speed, move it to a slower setting and take a shot. Your photo might not be a winner, but the resulting light leaks, blurs and streaks could make for one of the most interesting shots in the bunch.
Think in color
Swirling lights, face paint and carnival rides combine for a color spectrum unlike any other at music festivals, so when you’re composing a shot, play with those hues. We love the Colorsplash Camera, which lets you soak your photos in vibrant colors thanks to a color-wheel-flash.
Play with composition
Think like an artist when you compose a shot—if the sky is particularly stormy or streaked with clouds, fill most of the frame with sky and play with the height of the festival-goers toward the bottom of the frame. Turn around and face the crowd during a show and use the 170-degree fisheye lens on the Fisheye No.2 cameras to capture the energy around you. We like the La Sardina family of cameras—shaped like a compact sardine can (guess where they got the name), they shoot 35mm film, have a wide-angle lens and an easy-to-use rewind dial so you can turn back and shoot on top of frames you’d already used any time—trust us, it makes for some really unique shots.
Bypass the main event
Sometimes the most interesting photos aren’t made on stage—check out the sidelines for “human-interest” stories. Festival fashion, props, decoration, elaborate tent set-ups, and yes, even the line for the bathrooms can offer up unforgettable photos.
Make your pictures precious
Our favorite part about using an analogue film camera? It forces us to slow down, compose a photo, experience the moment, take the shot and hope for the best. Since our film is limited, we can’t just snap away at every little detail like we can with our iPhones—and that’s the way we like it. Music festivals are all about the music, after all. Go listen to it.
Sign up for a Lomography account so you can share your Bonnaroo pictures and enter to win one of five pairs of Teva sandals and a Lomo camera for your trip to the farm! Enter HERE by May 31 to win!