Bring your camera out to Leimert Park Village on Sunday, April 29!
By Jason Lewis
We will meet at Hot & Cool Cafe, which is the new coffee shop in Leimert Park, at 4 p.m. 4331 Degnan Blvd. The art walk goes from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m. From what I was told, it really gets going around 4 p.m. The Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center will host “Jazz in the Alley” in Leimert Park Village from 8-11 p.m. If you get there after 4 p.m., just find the publisher, Jason Lewis, who will be wearing a L.A. Standard shirt. He'll stay through the Jazz in the Alley event. These events are free to attend, and you can come and go as you please.
A couple tips. I’ve rarely had an issue shooting people in a public setting, especially at a festival. A good amount of the photos that appear in the Standard are candid shots of people in public settings. People tend to expect photographers to take photos at events. You’ll pretty much have free rein to shoot performers. I was told that there will be a stage set up for live musical performances. You’’ll have no problem taking photos there. I’ve never had an issue taking photos of the drum circles, or people dancing in or around the circles, in Leimert Park.
When I take candid photos of people at events, I tend to get somewhat close, but I do not invade a person’s space. That’s kind of left open to interpretation, so I can’t really say how many feet I stay back. I shoot mostly with a 24-70 mm lens. If I want a close shot to fill the frame with the subject, I’ll zoom in. Typically I take photos of people naturally interacting with others. I don’t tend to ask people to look at the camera and smile, but I’ve seen many photographers get good images by doing that. It’s a different expression than candid shots, but it works really well because you can get people looking very happy. Many people like to have their photo taken. In the few times I do that, I tend to smile at them and hold my camera up, and they know that I’m going to take their photo, so they smile at the camera. Some people will even perform. Typically I’m wearing a press pass, so it’s not a problem. When I’m not wearing a press pass, sometimes the person will ask what the photo is for (usually they don’t), and I just tell them that I’m shooting for the L.A. Standard. If somebody asks you, say that you’re with a camera club and you can tell them where the photos will be shared. They might be interested in joining the group!
We’ve worked on negative space (tutorial link below), and now we’re working on filling up the frame (link below). Both of those composition concepts are in play when shooting street photography. Check out the Standard’s Instagram page for some ideas. Also, check out Kristina Dixon’s Instagram page (https://www.instagram.com/11onevisuals/). She has a really good mix of photos from concerts, events, and festivals.
Filling up the frame: