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• Composizione e arte
Suggerimenti essenziali per fotografare spettacoli • Saggi e ispirazione
teatrali • Tecniche fotografiche
• Tutorial fotografici
• Recensioni

La fotografia teatrale consiste nel fornire immagini che siano concise e mantengano
l'integrità della luce e la visione del regista. Negli ultimi anni ho lavorato con gruppi TUTORIAL FOTOGRAFICI
teatrali locali nella nostra zona per fornire immagini promozionali e headshot, nonché
immagini di archivio delle loro produzioni. Le immagini d'archivio sono utilizzate dagli
attori, dagli scenografi / costruttori e dai costumisti per rappresentare il loro lavoro. In
questi ultimi anni ho imparato ad applicare tecniche di risparmio di tempo come l'uso di NOZIONI DI FOTOGRAFIA DI
impostazioni manuali della fotocamera, bilanciamento del bianco manuale, profondità di BASE SULLA PAESAGGI
campo mirata e trucchi di post-elaborazione.



NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f / 2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 4000, 1/100, f / 4.5
Fotografare il teatro è leggermente diverso da qualsiasi altra mia sessione fotografica.
Non ho il controllo dell'illuminazione e sono soggetto alla visione del direttore delle luci
con la luce come parte integrante del processo teorico di narrazione. La luce è stata
creata per fornire drammaticità, può essere dura e poco lusinghiera con conchiglie
oculari scure e ombre severe. Cambiarlo però sarebbe un affronto al loro lavoro. Quello
che segue è come preservo la loro visione drammatica. ATTREZZATURA CONSIGLIATA

• Le migliori fotocamere DSLR

• Le migliori fotocamere mirrorless
• Le migliori reflex digitali entry-level
• Le migliori fotocamere per la fotografia di



• DSLR decente per la fotografia di paesaggi

• Risoluzione massima del sensore da 24 MP?

• Recensioni di Nikon D5 / D6 mancanti qui

• Digitalizzazione diapositive

• FujiFilm X-T4 per la fotografia di uccelli e fauna

• Serve un nuovo computer per gestire le fotocamere

ad alta risoluzione
• Quale obiettivo Nikon per full frame
• Uso del gel stick sulle fotocamere mirrorless Nikon


• Alterna tra il pulsante Indietro e il rilascio

• Lo schermo LCD della Nikon Z6 si oscura in modalità

di riproduzione

NIKON D750 + 24-120 mm f / 4 a 62 mm, ISO 800, 1/160, f / 5.0

Cominciamo con le impostazioni della fotocamera. Preferisco scattare manualmente sia

per l' apertura che per la velocità dell'otturatore lasciando il mio ISO su auto . La
misurazione è impostata su ponderata centrale : trovo che sia più accurata e meno
probabile che venga ingannata da aree scure e sfondi, ma trovo comunque che la
maggior parte degli scatti richiederà una forte compensazione dell'esposizione negativa
per evitare che le alte luci vengano spente. I soggetti sono generalmente statici per
questi scatti, quindi una velocità dell'otturatore da 1/60 a 1/125 di secondo con un
obiettivo stabilizzato all'immagine è buona.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f / 2.8-4 @ 19mm, ISO 2800, 1/100, f / 4.5

An aperture f/4.5-f/5 using the Nikon D500 provides enough depth of field. That is
subject to change, of course, based on the image. I have found that the difference
between shooting with a full frame camera vs a crop sensor is moot with the depth of
field equivalency of a larger aperture on the crop sensor camera making up the
difference. The predominate lens used is the Nikon 16-80mm f/2.8-f/4E VR.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 3600, 1/60, f/5.6

Conserving the unique look to the theater light involves a bit of a hands-off attitude.
White balance is set using a custom WB setting using an ExpoDisc 2 with a #2 blue
added to keep the skin tones a bit warmer for the main lighting source, which is
tungsten base light with a blush gel. I also take an image of my X-Rite color checker for
reference later if needed. Remember that the color added for the performance is key to
their vision, so we don’t want to change that. Exposure in the final image should closely
reflect the mood of the set at the time, a very common mistake is to correct it. Lastly, this
should go without saying, no flash or added light!

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 27mm, ISO 2000, 1/60, f/5.6

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 8000, 1/100, f/5.6

The performers are the main subjects and they want to be seen as clearly as possible.
With that in mind, depth of field is important. This is one of the areas that we can cheat,
bring players closer together and more on the same plane as to allow all subjects to be
clearly visible and sharp. I’ll also ask them to turn faces slightly to the camera to make
them recognizable. There are times where it is important to focus on a primary individual
and put the others in the background out of focus, but not often. It’s dealt with by
maintaining the distance between the actors, reducing the aperture and increasing the
focal length for less depth of field.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 3600, 1/60, f/5.6

Post-processing is where we even the playing field. Having a manual white balance
preset, there is usually very little that I’ll change in post in that area. The dramatic and
uneven lighting on the other hand, can be several stops different across the scene and
while not wanting to change the look too much, I still want to be able to reveal the
actors in the shadow areas. This is where we get to cheat again. In these cases, I rely on
the Gradient Filter or Adjustment Brush in Lightroom to alter the difference in brightness
to a plausible level.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 1600, 1/125, f/5.6

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 22mm, ISO 2200, 1/125, f/4.5

Headshots are done with a single light setup, a Paul C Buff Einstein into a softbox, (no
cinema lighting here, simple and flattering) with a popup background. Minor global
adjustments, vignetting and light retouching is done. Duplicates are made of all the
images needed for promotional display and converted to black and white with
Photoshop via a channel mixer action I’ve made that works well with skin tones. This is
tweaked as needed to accommodate varied facial tonal qualities.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 16mm, ISO 2500, 1/100, f/5.0

With a tight two-day turnaround delivery, I prefer to print the images myself. 8×10 prints
of the promo B&W images are done through Lightroom to an Epson P800 using Red
River luster paper. Images are also uploaded to a gallery for the performers to see and

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 19mm, ISO 2500, 1/50, f/5.0

Hopefully, this will help some of you to improve your shooting of theater or even concert
venue shoots. Live shooting may require a bit faster shutter speeds, but the basis still
applies. I hope you’ve enjoyed this article and I’ll try to answer any questions you may
have in the comments section below.

NIKON D500 + 16-80mm f/2.8-4 @ 30mm, ISO 8000, 1/320, f/5.6

This guest post was submitted by Michael Steinbach. Michael has been a photographer
for 34 years specializing in weddings, senior and family portraits, commercial and
corporate photography. You can check more of his work at his website Bach

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21 COMMENTS Most Voted

Michael Ballinger
September 21, 2020 3:56 pm

Hi Michael, thank you so much for sharing your experience, I am not a professional
photographer. I have a Canon EOS RP and am weighing up buying a new lens for photographing
my daughter who is in a dance school. They will have shows at some stage after this pandemic
slows down. My question is around focal lengths and aperture.
or a few seats back?

I can pick up a used EF 70-200mm F4 USM L for around €500 to €600 which is way cheaper than
the new RF F2 equivalent for about €3000. I know there’s a weight and size difference as well but
I guess it’s about bang for buck as I’m not a professional but want great shots of my little girl on

0 Reply

Calum Fitzwater
October 17, 2019 8:31 pm

Thankyou so much Michael! I’m just starting videoing live theatre and live choir concerts etc on a
full-frame mirrorless, (Panasonic S1), and this helps so much!!

0 Reply

Memduh Sualp
May 16, 2018 6:20 am

Hello, this is a very nice article. Thank you.

My question is how do you use ExpoDisc 2 in theater? I mean where do you stand and where do
you point the camera to take the first shot with ExpoDisc to measure the custom white balance?

0 Reply

Himadri Sekhar Kar

April 22, 2018 1:24 pm

Beautiful topic. I enjoyed every bit of it. On the very date of its posting I was shooting a live
drama performance. I have made so many mistakes. If only I had put the ISO on auto mode, my
photos could have been much better.

I was shooting with Nikon D7000 + Sigma 17-50mm.

My photos are full of noise even at ISO 1600 and 2000.

How do you control the noise so nicely at such a high ISO as 8000?

0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 23, 2018 7:04 pm

Hello Himadri,

There is a pretty big difference in the noise levels between the D500 and the D7000. The
D7000 was introduced nearly 8 years ago and there’s been 4 cameras introduced
between then and now: the D7100, D7200, and most recently the D7500. So that is part
of the equation. I also use noise reduction in post of 25 Luminance and 25 color, and I
don’t hesitate to go beyond that if needed. The use of the images doesn’t require very
large prints so it’s less noticeable. Besides that I like the grain look when not to

0 Reply

April 20, 2018 2:44 pm

Darn it! I could have used the info in this article 3 weeks ago. But next time for sure!

0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 20, 2018 2:48 pm Privacy
If I’d have met my self imposed time line for this article you would have read it in
January! The contest pushed me to (finally) get it out the door:)

0 Reply

mayank manu
April 19, 2018 6:20 am

Dear Michael
Nice subject, very few people dare to touch this due to its unique requirement and plus you must
have some idea + taste about theatre movements.
to add this if you are shooting professionally for some theatre then try and got to the rehearsal
then you get to know what will be actual position in the show.
Going to back stage rehearsal helped me a lot while shooting in actual situation .


0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 20, 2018 2:46 pm

Hey Mayank,

For the most part it comes down to time, I really need to move to meet their deadlines
so while I’d love to watch the rehearsal, it’s time that I just don’t have. Very good points

0 Reply

April 19, 2018 3:27 am

Thanks, very nice article!

I am now starting theater and jazz club performances photography, so very helpful!
I am also trying to decide what would best suit my needs – NIKON D500 (or D7500) + 16-80mm
f/2.8-4 or NIKON D750 + 24-120mm f/4.
Currently I can get both options for around the same price. Any thoughts regarding this?

0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 19, 2018 8:05 am

Hi Filipe,

Any of your choices will work well. I’ve used the D750 but prefer the D500 with its
slightly better focusing system. The reservation I would have with the D7500 is the lack
of dual card slots, I have the cameras set to record to both cards as a backup, that and
the focusing system is similar to that of the D750. I personally love the 24-120
equivalency of the 16-80 Nikon for the speed that we need to work.

0 Reply

Stan Jacox
April 19, 2018 3:05 am

I am friends with a number of stage actors so more and more asked to shoot their performances.
I had to do it live so shutter speeds are needed to be higher than your static shots but otherwise
do the same, all manual, using a D800 which is too loud for some scenes, where I switch to my Dx
D7000 which is much quieter. There are 330 theaters within walking distance of my St Petersburg
city center apartment so the calls for photography keep increasing. I don’t charge for it and it
does take time for processing so some of your tips such as the manual WB using the references is
something I need to do. Professional theater set design and lighting is a key part of the
performance so capturing the often intentionally unflattering light is preferred by the director Privacy
If one has access to real dress rehearsals, where the full lighting plan is executed in real time
allows using the louder D800 and from positions never permitted in a live performance.
Concerts are very different, higher speed, less access, poor choice of position and need for higher
shutter speeds that push the limits of ISO so I approach them differently and them as very
different animals than theater. Concerts are more like sporting events, and the same lighting…
local or amateur will have very poor low light and televised professional sports will have good

0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 19, 2018 8:21 am

Because nearly all of the work is static and without an audience, noise hasn’t been an
issue. That is until just recently. The theatre also hosts a Jazz series that I’ve been
covering on and off where noise is not welcome. So far I’ve been using a Fujifilm XE3
with a 18-55 in electronic shutter mode. Truthfully I’m very impressed by that
combination. I’ll be exploring the XH1 with its IBIS, could be killer.

0 Reply

April 19, 2018 1:47 am

Thanks for pointers and tips

0 Reply

Michael Steinbach
Reply to€ April 20, 2018 2:42 pm

You are very welcome :)

0 Reply

Rich Mack
April 18, 2018 11:38 pm

Oh mia parola! Hai appena aperto un nuovo mondo di possibilità che non avrei mai creduto
possibile ...
Ora tutto ciò di cui ho bisogno è prendere una certa distanza dal mio soggetto con un buon
obiettivo. Questa è la parte facile ...
Immagini meravigliose e recensione.

0 rispondere

Michael Steinbach
Rispondi a€ 20 aprile 2018 14:41


0 rispondere



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