A parade is a festivity where we can photograph many interesting objects, whether it be the people in the parade or the audience. So what are the things we should pay attention and should prepare for when about to photograph a parade? Here are a few useful tips:
1.Find information of parade events. If available, ask for a travel calendar from your local tourism office. You can also go online or look for information in the newspaper.
2.Ready your “combat gear.” These include:
-Memory cards and backup batteries.
-All-around zoom lens (18-200mm lens for instance). Because you’re usually confined in the crowd when photographing parades and the all-around lens will ease in photographing tough angles.
-Mobile phone with a full battery for communication or for when you split from your crowd (when photographing in groups).
-Beverage and snack.
-Camera accessories such as external flash, filters, and tripod/monopod.
3.Wear loose comfortable clothing, the most important being the footwear. Don’t wear flipflops or slippers because they won’t be comfortable for long walks.
4.Use a sidepack instead of a backpack because it’ll be more difficult for you to reach your stored supplies when wearing a backpack.
5.Get to know the location of the event so you’ll be able to determine the best shot to shoot. Arrive early and beat the crowd so you’ll be better prepared for the day.
6.Scope the environment and see the direction of the sunlight. This is to prepare and avoid any backlight when photographing. If you’re forced to photograph in backlit areas, you’ll need to prepare a flash to achieve fill-in lighting on the object.
7.Respect other spectators. Try not to be in the way of the crowd’s view for long periods of time at the same spot. You’ll need to count on your better judgment to know when and where it’s appropriate to shoot.
8.Respect fellow photographers and try to not be in their way, especially if they’re taping the event.
9.Don’t forget to photograph the audience’s candid expressions. The crowd is part of the parade and if you’re keen enough, you’ll get expressions that make for great photographs.
10.Be confident. Use the photo tools you own with pride. Don’t be small-hearted if you’re only bringing a pocket camera while the other photographers are packed with professional gear. Their tools are their livelihood and that’s why they need to take professional-looking photographs whether it be for a newspaper, a competition, or a freelance photographing job. For us recreational photographers, it should be about the fun and joy of photography. So just have fun with it!