Performance photography course

Course Dates: 21/01/20 - 18/02/20
Time: 18:15 - 21:15
Location: PS - Photography Studio
Ed Gregory

Curtain up: discover the secrets of photographing live action on stage, whether it's a West End blockbuster or the school play. Learn from the experts about equipment requirements, exposure, under-stage lighting and composition, get useful tips for working with performers, and try out your new skills photographing performers in action.


What is the course about?

This practical course is for those who have a real interest in photographing performance whether for their professional portfolio or to pursue a passion. Different performances bring different challenges requiring a range of processes and techniques. On this course you will learn the techniques to meet these challenges including the effective use of available light, photographing movement and composition skills. You will learn how to evaluate the specific photographic opportunities and challenges of a performance, understand its essence, and the purposes for which the photographs will be used. You will also have the opportunity on the course to work with performers in a studio setting." target=“_blank”>view a selection of work made on this course.

What will we cover?

- The role and positioning of the photographer when shooting a performance
- Identifying the essence of a performance
- Creative composition using angles and framing
- Contextualising the performance within the image
- Making the most of available light
- Photographing movement
- Publishing and exhibiting work.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Produce a set of photographs capturing a performance using the available light
- Identify the different elements of a production
- Choose the appropriate equipment and materials for a given performance situation
- Identify publishing or exhibition opportunities for your work.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

Ideal for those who have completed our 'Beginner's photography: stage 1' course, but all are welcome, as long as you have a basic understanding of ISO, aperture, shutter speed, white balance and how to change these on your digital SLR, bridge or film camera (i.e. not a point-and-shoot camera). You will need to have manual functions on your camera (i.e. be able to change the aperture and shutter speed settings), and some knowledge of Photoshop would be useful.
You'll need to be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions, demonstrations, hand-outs and health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion. You should be happy using numbers and be able to do simple measurements and calculations.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be taught using a range of techniques including illustrated short lectures, discussions, demonstrations, practical exercises, tutorials, group and individual assistance and hand-outs..

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring your camera (if you have one) to the classes and you may wish to bring a notebook and pen. The City Lit has a range of Digital SLR cameras, tripods, speedlights (flash guns) and lenses which you are welcome to use during the hours of the class. It would be useful to bring a memory stick (or portable hard drive – please note: PC formatted hard drives can be read by Apple mac computers, but not written to.)
If you would like to buy art materials for your personal use outside of the course, City Lit students receive 10% discount off everything* from Cass Art, the UK's leading art supplies retailer. You will need to show your enrolment receipt in-store to receive your discount. Visit the Charing Cross shop at 13 Charing Cross Road WC2H 0EP or find your local shop at *Terms and conditions apply, visit

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

You might want to take your interest in practical photography further by enrolling on other specialised photographic courses at City Lit such as 'Photographing people', 'Food and drink photography', or 'Documentary photography'.
To find out more about these or other photography courses just enter the name in the search box at

Tutor Biographies
Conrad Blakemore Tutor Website

Conrad has worked as a professional photographer and filmmaker for over 35 years. He is best known for his images of drama, dance and music, shooting productions at theatres such as the Royal National Theatre, Donmar and RSC, with images appearing in national newspapers, magazines and on-line. As a film maker he studied at the University of the Arts Bournemouth Film School where he became interested in documentary film. He later studied at London College of Communication where he gained an MA in Documentary Film Research and Marketing. He has directed several short documentaries for Channel 4 and BBC TV and has also made fictional films and directed corporate videos. His films have appeared at international film festivals, including "The Big Shilling" and "The Watchmaker" which won awards at Tel Aviv and Munich. He is a keen traveller and enjoys shooting subjects abroad including landscapes, people and architecture. He has exhibited some of these images at City Lit. Conrad enjoys working with students, using his experience to help learners develop their skills and creativity.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

This course has now started

Course Code: VY759

Started Tue, eve, 21 Jan - 18 Feb '20

Duration: 5 sessions (over 5 weeks)

Full fee: £199.00
Senior fee: £199.00
Concession: £121.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

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Any questions?
or call 020 7492 2700/2703

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.