Tracey says… I suggested Rachel set Manual exposure mode. With the semi-auto Aperture or Shutter Priority modes, the camera will try to set a ‘good’ exposure, but the combination of dark venue and rapidly changing stage lighting will throw the metering system, which results in under- or overexposed shots. So it’s best to set a ‘catch-all’ base exposure in Manual mode, then tweak your Raw file in ACR.
Tracey says… While Rachel was already shooting ‘wide open’ at f/2.8, she wasn’t really sure what matching shutter speed and ISO settings to go with. I suggested that she stick to f/2.8, but set shutter speed to 1/100 sec, as this would freeze most motion, but allow a little movement blur for a more dynamic shot. I normally start off at ISO1600 – as that was the speed rating of the film I used back in the analogue days, and then reduce the ISO – or stop down the aperture – if the lights get brighter.
Autofocus And Shutter release
Tracey says… Rachel had been using a cluster of autofocus points, but I persuaded her to switch to a single AF point instead, and to move this around with the thumb-stick; as we’re using such a shallow depth of field, it’s vital that the face is pin-sharp. I also set AF-C mode, so the autofocus tracks the performer, and Continuous-low release mode, to take a sequence of shots without filling the buffer unnecessarily.