As soon as I received my Canon 5D Mark IV, I turned off the Wifi. I thought that it would not be very useful to me and that it would only serve to drain the batteries quickly. As I divide my work between studio and concerts, the WiFi did not seem very useful to me.
In the studio, the USB cable was perfect for working with tethered to the computer; in concerts, the WiFi also did not seem to be of great utility. But even so, one day, I decided to install the Canon Camera Connect application to at least find out how it works. Quickly the WiFI has become a fundamental tool in my work, both in the studio and in the concerts.
If in the studio the functionality of WiFi seems obvious. At concerts and music festivals it may not be that obvious. So, I decided to show a little of my workflow in concerts and festivals using Canon’s 5D Mark IV WiFi.
Why WiFi in Festivals and Concerts
Today, image and the social media have an enormous importance in the communication of any festival or concert.
If until recently it was important for a festival or artist/band to have good images to help sell more tickets for the next show, it is now important to have images available practically at the beginning of the festival or concert: first, to create interaction with the followers and second, to “combat” the images shared by the public.
The images obtained by fans, regardless of whether or not they are good or bad, they are about the control of bands and promoters, generating traffic outside the Festival or artist/band channels.
So sometimes, when I work as an official photographer for some festivals or some artist/band, I am asked to send one or two images right at the beginning. In order to do this, I have only two options…
- Make the first images, leave the pit and go to the computer to download the images, to edit and to send them to the person in charge of communication, which means to lose a lot of time of the show and if the computer is not near, miss the opportunity to return to the pit
- Have an assistant waiting to take the card, download the images, edit and send them while I continue to photograph – which is also not the best option because it would be another person to enter the pit, another person to be paid and I would have no control over the choice of the image nor about its editing.
With Wifi in the camera, everything changed. In a few minutes, I can choose the image, edit and send it to the Festival or artist/band communication person, without leaving the Pit.
How I prepare for the festival.
When I know I have to upload images at the start of the show, I try to ask for the festival logo, for the watermark. If necessary, I prepare the Logo to use it as easily as possible, and for this I create a PNG with the size of 2048px – the size with which the images are exported from Lightroom CC – with the logo on one of the corners, so I do not have to manually put the logo in its place, and I guarantee that it stays the same in all images.
I also try to combine the way the images will be sent. By email, Whatsapp or any other. Whatever it is, I prepare everything on the phone, with time, so that everything is ready to work in the quickest possible time. I also always carry a charged PowerBank, to ensure that I do not run out of battery power in my cell phone and I confirm that I have an Internet connection, either Data or WiFi from the festival/cconcert space.
What I need to have in the Pit to use the Camera´s WiFi
To send the Canon 5D Mark IV images to the festival communication department I need the application. Through this, I can choose the images and download them in the mobile phone. In my case I use a Huawei Mate 10, which guarantees me autonomy, speed and great image quality.
Next, I need an application to convert RAW to JPEG and make a fast edit.
I choose Adobe Lightroom CC for smartphones. It works perfectly for fast editing and to convert RAW into a smaller, and faster to send, JPEG.
Finally, I use, when necessary, another application to add the festival logo as a watermark – there are many free ones that work perfectly. Unfortunately, Lightroom for mobile still does not allow it.
How I use WiFi in the Pit
Before entering the Pit I connect the WiFi of the Canon 5D Mark IV and connect the Mobile to the network created by the camera.
After making the first images, I go to the smartphone and choose the ones I want to send.
I download the images and open them in Adobe Lightroom CC. I do some fast adjustments for contrast, exposure, color and save it in JPEG, with the size of 2048px on the larger side.
If I need to add a watermark, I open the images in the watermarking application and add the PNG I made before the festival and that it was already recorded on the phone.
With the images ready, I send to the responsible of communication by the combined form.
As I continue to photograph the first or second song, the images are already being shared on Festival or artist/band social networks.
The next thing I want to test with WiFi is the ability to have another Canon 5D Mark IV mounted on the stage controlled remotely with the Canon Camera Connect. In this way, I can make images of the stage without having to go on stage.
About the Author
Rui Bandeira is a photographer based in Porto, Portugal, you can see more of his photos on his site, and say hi on facebook and Instagram. This article was also published here and shared with permission.