Brass Bands and me.
You know me. I like brass bands. I like them best when they are chaotic. When they are working in the street. When they are surrounded by a crowd. You also know that I like to layer my pictures so that you get some sense of the scale and depth. I was lucky last Sunday. I seemed do that a lot.
Easier layering came from a couple of adjustments. One, obviously, was the size of the crowd. It was huge and compressed into a tiny side street. Two, was my own positioning, which was mostly trapped on that same side street. Finally, it was my choice of lenses. As you know, I’m not a big gear guy. But, I’ve been working with a very short telephoto lens — a 60mm that sees like a 90 mm — which forces me to keep more of the crowd in the picture. Even when I’m focusing on somebody in the middle of it.
Deep inside, I’ve always known that would help, but the old photojournalist in me kept saying, “longer is better.” And, sometimes it is. For instance, if I worked with a 300mm, I could have possibly made a nice portrait of the saxophone player. But, that would be a little isolating at a second line. The scene matters to the picture.
Of course, my second camera body has a short wide angle zoom on it. I can work even closer with that.
I haven’t talked much about the second line, itself. Those of you who have been around for a while know what it is, even if you don’t live in New Orleans. For those of you who are newer to Storyteller, I invite you to poke around a bit. The search function works pretty well. Just type in second line. You’ll be bombarded with posts from the past few years.