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Festival Photography Tips: 7 Things You Need to Know

Updated: May 22

Are you just starting out as a festival photographer? You're in luck - I got 7 festival photography tips that everyone should know! You'll discover how to get access to the festival, how to use the front of house area, and even how to behave on stage to get those perfect shots. These tips work for all kinds of festivals, from music concerts to dance events, so you'll be well-prepared for whatever comes your way. I'm an international festival photographer with over 11 years of experience, and my most important tip you can find at the end of this blogpost.

If you have any questions about shooting your first festival? Send me a DM, I'll be happy to help you out!

Did you already see my video about important photos to make while photographing a festival? Check it out!


Tip 1: Know how to get access to a festival

To gain access to a festival, you need an accreditation. This means that the festival organization recognizes and approves you to photograph the festival. Sometimes, if you're invited through a media outlet, the organization will give you a press or photo pass. But if you're hired by the festival itself, they'll give you a crew or a Triple A accreditation, which stands for Access All Areas. If you're having a hard time getting access to festivals, feel free to leave a comment, I'd love to help!

Tip 2: Know the photo pit rules at the festival

The photo pit is the area between the stage and the crowd that is created by placing metal barriers. Each festival has its own set of rules, but one of the most common rules is that you're only allowed to shoot the first three songs of an artist and never use a flash. Oh, and one more thing - watch out for pyros and CO2. We don't want you getting burned or suffocated. Safety first, people!

Tip 3: Know how to shoot in the photo pit

If you want to capture the emotions of the most enthusiastic visitors who are often in the front row, shooting from the photo pit is a great idea! To take awesome shots from the photo pit, step on the safety step, which will help you overlook the crowd and capture beautiful photos. So go ahead and give it a try!

Tip 4: Know what the front of house is

The front of house is where the sound and light technicians have set up. This is usually straight in front of the stage so they can get the best view of the show. And guess what? It can be the perfect spot for you to snap some amazing shots too! So, make sure to locate this area at the festival and take advantage of the unobstructed view to capture some stunning photos of your favorite performers.

Tip 5: Know how to behave on stage

When you're taking photos on stage at a festival, it's super important to know the rules. Every festival has its own set of rules, so make sure you introduce yourself to the stage manager and ask if there's anything you need to keep in mind. For example, at some festivals they might not allow too many people on stage at once. So don't be afraid to ask if you can go on stage and make sure you're following the rules.

Tip 6: Know where not to stand in the DJ booth

When you're taking photos of the DJ, make sure not to stand between the DJ and the monitors. These monitors are the speakers on the left and right side of the DJ and they're super important for the DJ to hear the music properly when they're mixing. So, avoid standing there and you'll be helping out the DJ and getting better shots at the same time! Also check out these tips for DJ photography!

Tip 7: Know the specific rules of the festival

Before heading out to the festival, make sure to check out their specific rules. Take some time to do your research and find out what's allowed and what's not. By doing so, you'll save yourself from any unnecessary hassle and you can bring all your energy to shooting your best photos!

And there you have it, 7 important tips you need to know as a beginner festival photographer. Remember to have fun and enjoy the experience! And if you want more tips and tricks - let me know. I love to help!


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🙋‍♂️ About Me

Hey there! I'm an international festival and event photographer with a ton of experience in capturing the magic of events and festivals. But there's more to me than just photography - I'm also a social studies teacher! I'm really passionate about using my camera to create memories that people can hold on.


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