Portrait Photography model Charlotte Rose Whittington

Whitby Goth Weekend Photos April 2022

Over the last few years I’ve become a regular at the Whitby Goth Weekend and was keen to visit for the event in April 2022. The opportunities for street portraits are really good here. Many who attend put a lot of thought into what they will wear for the event. Some attendees lead a Goth lifestyle and are wearing what they normally would any other day of the week. For others, the weekend has become an opportunity to ‘dress up’. Whatever people’s motivation for attending, I’m just glad the event exists and provides such great chances for street portraits.

Whitby Goth Weekend – Asking for a photo

I wouldn’t describe myself as an incredibly confident person, though I’m certainly more confident the older I get. I’m not the sort of person who finds it easy to approach a complete stranger in your average town and ask if I can take their portrait.

That’s the great thing about the Whitby Goth Weekend. You will be just one of many photographers present and people attending the event are used to being asked to pose for a portrait. It’s not unusual to chat to people, give them your business card and share the images after the event. My advice would be to be polite when asking, work quickly and let your subject get on with their day. It’s mostly common sense and you can quickly tell from a person’s body language if they are relaxed or in a hurry to be somewhere.

Whitby Goth Weekend – My Camera & Lenses

For the last few years my camera of choice has been a Sony a7iii. I’m a huge fan of mirrorless cameras for a few reasons but eye autofocus has to be one of the main reasons I prefer a mirrorless to a DSLR. When taking portraits I often like to shoot wide open at aperture like f1.4 or f1.8. At such apertures the background is left out of focus. Sometimes even the ears can be slightly out of focus. With such a narrow zone of sharpness it’s important to get the eyes of a portrait sharp. Doing so with ageing eyes is too risky and I would much rather rely on the modern technology in a mirrorless camera.

In terms of lenses you will often see photographers attend these events with a couple of zooms. Zooms are very flexible and I even used to attend the Whitby Goth Weekend with my Tamron 28-75 f2.8 zoom. Recently however I’ve become to favour prime lenses for portraits. One of my favourite portrait lenses I own is the Sony 135mm 1.8 GM lens. I didn’t bring it to Whitby though as you find you are often working in quite narrow streets. Working with a 135mm lens you are likely to get someone come between you and the model. Also the working distance using a 135mm lens makes communication with the model more difficult. Therefore this time I decided to use just two lenses, a Samyang 85mm f1.4 for head and shoulder portraits and a Samyang 45mm f1.8 for full length portraits and group portraits.

Whitby Goth Weekend – Other advice & Images

If you have never attended the Whitby Goth Weekend before you might like to check out the official website where you can find out more information. It takes place twice a year and many venues in Whitby are used.

If the Goth lifestyle is for you chances are you will enjoy the live music in the evenings. Personally I’m usually back at my accommodation processing some of the photos from the day. There are also many shops in Whitby selling clothing that appeals to those who attend these events. On the subject of accommodation, if you want to stay in Whitby I’d advise booking as far in advance as you can to obtain the best prices. I often make the decision to attend quite late and end up staying in Scarborough which has more availability and cheaper prices!

Since attending the event I’ve had a number of people ask me to send them copies of photos that I took of them. The images within this article and those I upload to the likes of Facebook and Instagram are low resolution copies which load quickly and are ideal for screen display.

Some people though want a high resolution copy that is suitable for getting prints from. It’s not always been easy to send these due to attachment file size limits with email. I’ve come to the conclusion that uploading high resolution copies to Gallery software like PicTime is a better option. The advantages of software like PicTime are as follows:

  1. PicTime allows me to link to professional UK printers. Depending on the product this is likely to be Loxley Colour or SIM Imaging. Any orders via PicTime are handled automatically by the software so I don’t have to get involved and you don’t need to share your address with me.
  2. PicTime galleries display the images in a very professional way. It’s easy to see how a photo might look in a frame or as a canvas print.
  3. PicTime also allows visitors to my Gallery to download high resolution digital copies of the image. Having the high resolution digital copy is beneficial in a couple of scenarios. If you want to get multiple copies of an image you might find it cheaper to have the digital file and get the prints yourself. I would stress however that it’s best to use a professional printing lab for an image you care about. I personally don’t spend thousands on my camera equipment and take time to carefully process images and then just let my local Boots or Snappy Snaps print the results! The other advantage of downloading a high resolution digital copy is for archival purposes. Generally I keep images within my Gallery for a minimum of 12 months after the event.

The images within this article are only a tiny selection from the weekend. If you would like to see more then please visit my Whitby Goth Weekend April 2022 Gallery page.

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