Are you planning to visit a historical reenactment? In this episode, I’ll give you some great tips that will help you document living history with your camera.
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are you planning to visit a historical reenactment in this episode I'll give you some great tips that will help you document living history with your camera right here on the wheel moneymaker photography podcast re-enactors are sometimes called living historians these men and women bring some of history's greatest moments to life right before our very eyes Civil War reenactment for instance has a history as old as the Civil War itself even before the war ended soldiers acted out past battles as a way to remember and shall respect to their lost brethren reenactments aren't limited to just Civil War however while the Civil War is one of the most popular forms of reenactments many groups come together to reenact other historically significant events in fact last year I had the honor of attending and capturing some awesome d-day reenactment photos in Connie out Ohio for the photographer historical reenactments are a wonderful way to transform history into art if you'd like to learn some tips and tricks to help you create amazing images at reenactment here are a few of my favorites number one mind the crowds one of the most challenging parts of shooting a reenactment is finding a location where you can set up move around quickly and avoid onlookers that accidentally wander into the frame to avoid this problem I call the media department of the reenactment that I'll be attending by offering them use of my photos for advertising purposes they tell me where the best Vantage's are and give me behind-the-scenes access and because I'm giving the re-enactors permission to use my photos I still retain ownership and credit for taking the photos this trick has worked at almost every reenactment I've ever attended number to plan learn and tell a story when I go to a reenactment I always try to take a collection of images that tells a story to do this well you'll need to learn everything possible about the reenactment and its historical significance start by studying the events brochures website and other literature it is also helpful to learn everything you can about the actual historical event and its time period as you look through your lens make it your goal to lead viewers through the event number three choose the right lens a good reenactment is action-packed you won't have time to do lots of lens changes and you may not want to carry a massive camera bag around all day plus marching soldiers galloping horses and gun and cannon fire the atmosphere gets dusty and dirty quickly which means that even if you can do a lens change you may not want to fill the inside of your camera with dust therefore I'd recommend taking along zoom lens perhaps an 18 to 200 millimeter lens that can capture both wide shots and those that are far away if you don't have a long zoom lens choose two or three lenses that let you capture a wide range of focal lengths you may even want to carry two cameras one with the long lens and one with the short lens simply to avoid lens changes number four raise your ISO to capture the bursts of flame galloping horses and plumes of smoke you'll need to shoot with a fast shutter speed you could stop down the aperture but as you do so you'll end up with a progressively narrower depth of field the best option is to preserve a wide depth of field and raise the ISO setting instead number five your Vantage some photographers take the vast majority of their shots at the five-foot ten inch or standing angle however you can add a lot of dynamicism by varying your angles squatter lay down on the ground to get a unique viewpoint you may also want to shoot from high vantage points like from the top of bleachers or a grandstand or from a hilltop looking down into a valley this gives you the chance to create wonderful panoramic images of action however don't trap yourself if you choose to shoot from a high place make sure that you can quickly access other vantage points if you need to get back on the same level as the re-enactors number six facial expressions the best re-enactors aren't simply acting these men and women travel back in time to live the event that they're portraying if you focus on facial expressions you'll have many great opportunities that capture the raw emotion of the event think about the anger or fear that soldiers feel as battle lines meet in the field or the seriousness of officers discussing strategy if you capture these emotions you'll end up with a powerful collection of images number seven the background we still live in the modern day world which means that there are many ways for modern trappings to sneak into your images a car sitting behind the battle lines or a spectator wandering through the frame in a modern outfit looking at his smartphone be conscious of the background at all times and make sure to angle yourself away from parking areas crowds of spectators and other things that can ruin the historical effect historical reenactments give you the unique opportunity to capture living history with your lens take a step back in time and document the stories of the brave men and women that took part in history's greatest moments what differentiates amateur images from fine art photography in the next episode of the will moneymaker photography podcast I'll show you places where you can find fine art to learn more about photography and sign up for our weekly newsletter visit will moneymaker calm copyright by will moneymaker photography all rights reserved you