Festival are fun – there is food, entertainment, art, and much more. For photographers it is a cornucopia of photo opportunities. Street photography along the midway and the nooks and crannies with visitors, vendors, and performers enjoying their day. Dancers and musicians are great subjects for interpretive imagery. There is art and food. It just goes on and may seem overwhelming.
You can choose to put on your photojournalist hat and prepare photo stories. You can practice environmental portraiture of musicians, dancers, and other performers. Close-ups of art and food.
There are challenges. Lighting for example. You can’t re-arrange the sun and clouds, you have to find ways to make the best of it. Georgia festivals “feature” strong daytime sunlight with deep shadows. Often dappled sunlight and shade provide difficult challenges.
As photographers we are just visitors and should be as unobtrusive as possible. Don’t bring flash equipment to lighten up the shadows. Plan on bringing out the details in post-processing.
Don’t get in the way of the audience around performers. That means stepping aside and finding a perspective that allows you to capture the subjects in more expressive compositions.
Festivals are not a good venue for using tripods. Plan on doing most of your work hand-held. Monopods can be very useful, especially towards evening as the light gets weaker.
The “golden hour”, the time before sunset can provide magic light for wonderful photography results.