I am a festival photographer based in Europe. I really love festivals, they are another world. There the people forget their everyday problems and that is why I find it interesting to shoot them in their happy, small world. I think that most people think that to be a festival photographer it’s easy and you don’t work like a normal creative, but this view is totally false. It is also a workplace for me and you need to have a strict schedule and time management, and of course you have to present individual festival pictures that really show the feeling of the festival.
So, the equipment needed for festival photography needs to be highly flexible and it’s a big benefit if the equipment is not too large (it lets you move quickly) and you can use it in every situation from daylight to night.
I’ve always used Canon, maybe because my first camera was a Canon (350D) but I really don’t want to persuade anybody that Canon is better or whatever. Personally, I like Canon-colors and use Canon for videography as well, but that is all.
So my basic kit includes a Canon EOS 5D Mark III, Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 L, Canon EF 24mm f/1.4 L II, Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 and a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8.
I pretty much always use my Canon 24mm f/1.4 – I really like this lens. If I have to choose only one lens to photograph a whole festival I am sure that I would choose this Canon 24mm f/1.4 lens. My second favorite is the Canon 85mm f/1.8, and with these two lenses I could basically handle everything at a festival. Of course, sometimes I also use a wide-angle Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 L or my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 for concerts.