The Sony A7s is a full-frame mirrorless camera that was released in 2014 and was known for its excellent low light performance and high sensitivity. It has a 12.2 megapixel resolution and is capable of capturing 4K video.

One of the key features of the Sony A7s is its low light capability, thanks to its high sensitivity and wide dynamic range. It is able to capture clean, noise-free images and video in very low light conditions, making it a popular choice for photographers and videographers who need to shoot in challenging lighting situations.

The Sony A7s also has a fast and accurate autofocus system, which is helpful for capturing fast-moving subjects. It has a wide range of features and customization options, including the ability to shoot in different color profiles and record in a variety of formats.

Overall, the Sony A7s is a highly capable camera that is well-suited for a wide range of photography and videography applications.

In concert photography, you’ll typically want to use a lens with a wide aperture (f/2.8 or wider) to allow more light into the camera and help you capture sharp, well-exposed images in low light conditions. A lens with a longer focal length (such as a 70-200mm or a 300mm) can also be useful for capturing close-up shots of performers.
In addition to a fast lens, it’s also a good idea to have a lens with a shorter focal length (such as a 24-70mm or a 50mm) to allow you to capture wider shots of the stage and the performers. This can be helpful for showing the context of the concert and the energy of the crowd.
It’s worth noting that the type of lens you’ll want to use will depend on the type of concert you’re photographing and the size of the venue. In general, it’s a good idea to have a variety of lenses on hand so that you can choose the one that’s best suited for the situation.
Finally, it’s also important to make sure that your lens is fast enough to capture sharp images in low light conditions. A lens with a fast aperture (f/2.8 or wider) is typically recommended for concert photography.

Concert photography can be a fun and rewarding hobby or profession, but it can also be challenging and fast-paced. Here are some steps to get started with concert photography:

  1. Learn the basics of photography: It’s important to have a solid understanding of photography principles such as composition, exposure, and lighting. Consider taking a photography course or workshop to learn the fundamentals.
  2. Invest in equipment: You’ll need a camera with a fast shutter speed and a lens with a wide aperture to capture sharp, well-exposed images in low light conditions. A telephoto lens can also be useful for capturing close-up shots of performers.
  3. Find concerts to photograph: Look for local concerts or events featuring bands or artists that you enjoy. Many smaller venues and local bands are happy to have photographers cover their shows.
  4. Get permission: Before you start taking photos, make sure you have permission from the venue and the performers. Some venues may require you to have a media pass or credential to photograph the show.
  5. Practice: The more you practice, the better you’ll get. Consider attending local concerts or events to hone your skills and get comfortable shooting in a live environment.
  6. Edit and share your photos: After the concert, edit and select your best shots and share them on social media or on your own website. You can also reach out to the bands or venue to see if they’re interested in using your photos.

The Best Camera Settings for Concerts

Today I’m going to explain the best camera settings for concert photography. Concert photography is one of the more challenging types of photography. You have very difficult lighting, a lot of moving subjects. One of the best things you can do to ensure your concert photos are as awesome as you want them to be is to make sure your camera settings are optimized for concerts. The first and most important thing you need to do is get your camera ready to focus and capture the action. First, let’s discuss the focus mode. There are two basic focusing methods that all cameras have, which are the default focusing action and then continuous focus. Single Shot focus is where you half-press the shutter button to acquire focus and then for as long as you hold the shutter button and half-press, the focus will not change regardless of whether or not the subject moves with a single shot if you want to readjust focus, shutter button and then half-press it again to reacquire focus. Single Shot focus is not good for concert photography. Therefore you need to use some form of continuous focus.

Continuous focus is exactly what it sounds like the camera instead of blocking focus on a point in space instead it looks at the subject in the scene. As the subject moves, the camera continuously adjusts the focus to keep the subject in focus. Most modern cameras have a few different continuous focus options. Typically a standard continuous tracking is continuous. Now I cannot tell you which one of these to use because how well they work will vary from camera to camera. Instead what you will need to do is a test for different continuous and tracking focus modes to see which one gives you the best performance with whatever continuous focus option you use. You still have to be sure that the camera is continuously focusing where you want to focus. This brings us to the next setting you want to set which is your focus point. This again will vary from camera to camera. But you typically have three options to use with continuous focus. Those options are a single focus point, a grouping of focus points, or face or eye focus. For Concerts, I recommend a single point or a group and I recommend you avoid face or eye protection. Here’s why. Face for eye detection can be great when say you’re tracking the lead singer and they are moving across the stage and passing in front of the performer’s face. The camera sees the bass player’s face and thinks it should track that face and in doing so, stops focusing on the lead singer which is the actual subject.

For those who are interested in nostalgia, old Shadows music or anything the New Zealand Variety Arts Club gets up to you may just find the odd snippet here.

In this case I have uploaded a video from a show in Auckland during 2015.

It features “The Shadz” another New Zealand band who rock the planet.



Hank Marvin, the guitarist from the original band “The Shadows” is pictured here performing at the latest Gypsy Jazz Festival on 2nd March 2019 at Drakesbrook Winery in Western Australia.

Hank Marvin

Hank Marvin

Blogs as well as Facebook provide a platform for airing views, whether it be what I classify as political BS, or how bad Starbucks Coffee happens to be etc.

This is a very rare rant for me but currently I am highly brassed off and it has NOTHING to do with photography. It is all to do with VALUE in the entertainment industry.

Over recent years there has been numerous posts on websites and social media by musicians who quite rightly complain about establishments and venues who are not prepared to pay reasonable fees for performances.

Yes it is extremely hard for musicians to get gigs now and get paid for what they are worth. I do my best to help, providing artists with high quality images at NO cost, to do with whatever they wish.


People who LISTEN to music like myself are always prepared to pay to see people we like and respect. We are blessed in New Zealand at the value we can normally find to see wonderful performers.

As an example, in 2018 Twenty dollars to see the great Roy Phillips (ex Peddlers).

Five dollars (members) and fifteen dollars public to see Ray Woolf sing his heart out at Auckland Jazz and Blues club. Plus many others PLUS those who perform free.

WELL, last night 22nd January four of us paid Six hundred and thirty four dollars and four cents to see Elaine Page at Bruce Mason Theatre in Takapuna.

Now here is the good and great:

  1. We did not know Elaine Page was performing there. We found out an hour earlier while at a restaurant nearby. Wow, we could not believe it, off to get the very best tickets we could, if there happened to be any left. It was beyond belief that someone like me did not know this world class performer was here in Auckland. I had been lucky enough to see her perform in London many years ago.
  2. The excitement was bubbling and we could not believe our luck to find out last minute and get what were without doubt, the best seats in the house.
  3. The opening act was a set performed by the “John G Smith” Band, the backing group for Elaine Paige. They were spectacular, wonderful musicians and YES they used real instruments. The opening number one of my favorites “Mountain Dance” written by the great Dave Grusin. No complaints at all, thirty minutes of great music by a superb group, in a nice theatre and at that stage a good atmosphere.
  4. The main act and second half was the great Elaine Paige backed by John G Smith and his group. This lady is still going strong, a wonderful voice with terrific repertoire of music. Songs written by people such as Jimmy Webb, Harry Nilsson and others. Her performance included most of the Beatles tunes found on the Sgt Pepper Album. The final song was “Memory” and yes no doubt the voice is still there. HOWEVER read the next bit:

Here is the bad:


There was virtually no dimming of lights after half time yet the first half was performed in darkness with a well lit stage. There was a row of spots along the ceiling directly above our seats which were too bright and reflected off our eye-wear making it difficult to see the stage which we could do in the first half.

There were many grumpy people including our friends who felt they had paid good money to be let down by a dumb decision to keep the lights on over the audience. The sad thing is Elaine Paige would have had a full view of the many empty rows of seats.

This show was badly promoted (if at all). For artists of this calibre and a woman who has led such a spectacular career over many years deserves an audience of more than just a few hundred people.

Despite me laying a complaint with the management on behalf of our friends and others around us nothing was done about the lights. In addition despite the most professional performance by a world acclaimed artist many people were expressing their dissatisfaction at the ned of the concert over the bad lighting.

In my opinion if there happened to be a request by the performer to leave the lights on (which is what I was told by management), was a bad decision.

All of a sudden the VALUE of our seats were diminished, it was not the same experience as the first half which was performed with the auditorium being in full darkness and a nicely lit stage.

There was no photography permitted which is OK, however at least I am able to show a copy of the ticket I paid for a great performance but disappointing experience.

After having had first hand experience promoting and marketing in my own career it requires work these days to please people, entertainers are meant to have people leave feeling happy.
Oh well I will just lay it on an promoters who I was were not even present, just a bunch of monkeys.

I am constantly being asked where to buy guitar gear. People want to know the most reliable source for online musical equipment.

To be honest the very best I can come up with it Amazon. They not only are the biggest online market place they have the biggest range of equipment you can imagine.

Great Guitars

Photos through the ages

When you see videos of the early developers of photography, it is pretty funny especially in light of photography today. In those old movies, to get a picture, the camera was as big as a computer is today. The photographer had to put his head under a sheet and hold up a huge tripod which exploded with smoke and fumes to make the flash.

Today photography could not be more different. In the movies, we used to be astonished when spies had cameras in their watches or the soles of their shoes. But now it is common for almost everyone to have a camera in their phone and to be able to pull it out and snap a photo virtually anywhere.

Let’s fill in a few gaps. We can go back to the origins of the language to find that the word photography began in the Greek times and it literally means drawing with light. But the actual science of photography did not really take off until the 1800ís in this country when a fellow by the name of John Hershel applied the words photography, positives and negatives to the task of producing pictures. We had negatives of our photos from then until the dawn of digital photography in the last few years.

For most of us, though, the company Eastman Kodak is probably the one we associate most with the early developments of photography. And it was the early pioneer of photography, George Eastman that made the first advancements on the primitive methods being used until his work in 1839. A little trivia? Eastman made the name Kodak up because he wanted his company name to begin with a K.

The developments began to come along pretty routinely as photography began to mature and become more sophisticated. Color photography was developed in 1861 by a scientist named James Clark Maxwell. Up until then all photographs were black and white or monochrome. Color photography was a huge leap forward but it really did not start to move into the public arena until two brothers named Lumiere in 1907 invented the color plate.

Over the decades to follow, photography moved forward steadily and moved out of the world of science and then journalism and into each of our homes. But the revolution that has turned photography into what we know it to be today occurred in 1981 when Sony invented the first camera that worked without film. The digital age was upon us.

It was Kodak that again got the lead on the marketplace by getting the first digital camera out on the market in 1990 when they developed the Kodak DCS 100. As with all technology, early digital cameras were large (by today’s standards) and much more expensive than we are used to now.

Innovation in the field of photography has continued to march almost as fast as people could keep up. When digital cameras were offered that gave us a port to be able to download them to our computers, the internet explosion of imagery was fueled.

Further development coming virtually every year since 1990 included the rapid and phenomenal expansion of memory in digital cameras along with the concept of swappable storage drives. This changed the way people took pictures because now the number of pictures someone could take was virtually limitless. The expansion of memory also gave developers the ability to add video capture to the same devices as were used for photography so that virtually anyone could become a cameraman with that tiny camera that could by this time fit in their shirt pocket. Much of the fun of internet sites like YouTube can be attributed to the ability of the average citizen to take video anywhere, anytime and at no cost to them.

The photography and video industry has had to do a lot of adjusting to learn how to service this market that was changing at speeds unimaginable by George Eastman a century before. The affordable availability of quality color printers that enabled people to print their photographs at home was a boon to the amateur camera buff but a blow to the photography industry.

But to their credit, the industry has kept up. But we can be sure that the developments are just getting underway. Who knows what new technical wizardry is ahead for the photography world. It is sure to be a fun ride, no matter what the future holds.
Best Cameras for Concert Photography

Fazioli Piano

A Home Studio to die for:

My great friend Nunzio Mondia from Perth Western Australia has created a masterpiece.

Normally a masterpiece for Nunzio is a composition carefully structured on his Fazioli piano. However he has gone one step further and built a state of the art recording studio behind his home.

Nunzio was able to obtain council permission to build something in my humble opinion which could rival most commercial recording studios anywhere in the world. The attention to detail is beyond belief, the materials used are astounding and above all I can honestly say I have never experienced sound anywhere as I have in that environment.

The main live room has a presence to it like nothing I have ever personally witnessed, despite spending my life in the audio business, the attention to lighting as well as the great smell of gorgeous Australian timbers really adds to the excitement. I was fortunate enough to experience the control room before any commercial sound gear had been installed only a stereo unit, comprising of a pair of Spendor powered loudspeakers fed by a basic Pioneer CD player with a recording of Elvis Presley completely blew my mind. Sitting in what hifi enthusiasts would call “The Sweet Spot” created a feeling and sensation that Elvis had definitely not left the building. He was there in person, and anyone with their eyes closed would have truly imagined the same. A few well known artists have already been privy to a visit and none have left without being overwhelmed at the effort, thought, creativity, workmanship and genius dedicated to this project. The design itself was created by Nunzio as was a great deal of the construction and hard labour. Many good people providing their skills, assistance and generosity can feel very honored to be involved in such a project.

This is not only a credit to Nunzio but a statement to the audio industry that music production is absolutely alive and well. The ideas being created for the way this masterpiece will be used is surely going to open some eyes all over the world. Great artists will certainly perform here, (some already have). The picture was taken of me through a window looking into the main live room. The Fazioli piano sits there in all of it’s glory and will no doubt provide enormous pleasure to many people for years to come.

Nunzio Mondia