Visiting a workshop held by Guido Karp is like reading the Playboy Magazine – it is not only because of the pictures but the stories.

Last year Mr. Karp announced a couple of concert photography workshop. The workshops took place at the Rock Meets Classics Tour travelling through Germany. Having a concert workshop offered by one of the best concert photographers in the world was like a jackpot. Also, looking at the impressive list of top artists at the concert, booking the workshop was a no-brainer.

The artists:
Francis Rossi (STATUS QUO)
Leo Leoni & Nic Maeder (GOTTHARD)
John Helliwell & Jesse Siebenberg (SUPERTRAMP)
Eric Bazilian (THE HOOTERS)
Michael Sadler (SAGA)
and The Mat Sinner Band & RMC Symphony Orchestra

It would have been even better if the workshop had taken place at a Manowar concert. But you can’t always have everything in life. Luckily, I got tickets for a Manowar concert in April – unfortunately without a camera. But back to the concert workshop.

The workshop started in the early afternoon. Guido told us things about various aspects of concert photography, starting with equipment topics, behavior during the concert and the final editing and use of the photos. The workshop was also peppered with anecdotes from Guido’s life as a photographer. Not only they are fun you might also learn a thing or two by listen to. When the sound check took place the workshop group consisting of about ten photographers went to the concert hall. Now we got an good impression about the whole hall lighted up. Later at the concert there will be everything dark. Once the sound check was over Guido talked about the actual concert. He told us about good positions to photograph from. Guido also dealt with topics such as focal lengths and image details, so one could get a good idea of what to do and what to expect in the evening.

Before the concert started some pizza was ordered since one can’t shoot photos being hungry. The group split up for the concert. Half of the participants were coached by Guido, the other half by his wife Nicole, who also photographs concerts. Normally, as a concert photographer you only get the pleasure of taking pictures during the first few songs. In this workshop we photographed the whole concert which was a great thing because it allowed you to try different things.

I used my trusty EOS5DMkIV and borrowed a 120-300mm/f2.8 lens to photograph the concert. This was a pretty heavy setup. When the concert was over and the memory cards were full my arm was lame from holding the 300mm/f2.8 bad boy attached to my camera. While the concert was over the workshop was not. Guido asked every participant to retouch the best photos and send them to him. This was one of the greatest things about the workshop. While other workshops simply end and leave you with your pictures Guido went through all of the submitted pictures and commented them. This was a pretty amount of work. Also, the artists were asked to approve the pictures. In the end every participant received a big fat pdf file containing all photos including Guido comments which helped to understand what needs to be improved. Luckily just one of my submitted photos was not approved. The others can be found at the end of this blog post.

A few weeks ago Guido announced that he managed to join Alphaville with a new series of concert workshops. Well, guess who has signed up…