Musician Photography

Help! I like Dirty Pictures! – By Alex Kreisman

Yes I do! But maybe not in the way you might think! A couple of years ago, I had the chance to post an essay on one of my visits to an extermination camp in these very pages. I reviewed the article today and am blessed to find new comments that are heartwarming. I thank all of the people who actually took the time the post a comment. Thank you guys!

Leica M6 "Panda" and Kodak Tri-x

5 Frames of ‘… And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead’ with a Leica M6 and Kodak Tri-X – by Neil Milton

Though I’ve largely ploughed my creative furrow in street photography, I got my all-important start in being paid to photograph by shooting gigs on the Glasgow and Edinburgh music scenes. Having come to photography from running an underachieving little indie label, it was a natural shift to slide across to shooting the gigs I was no longer performing or promoting. It didn’t hurt that I had a wee black book lousy with contacts to smooth the obstacle-strewn way to photo-passes.

B.B King on a Canon AE1 – By Ron Duda

Blues legend B. B. King came to my town, Hamilton, Canada  in 1983 to play at what was then called Hamilton Place. What that venue lacked in architectural character it more than made up for in its excellent acoustics. Being a medium sized city, we didn’t attract many big acts. B. B. playing in our town was a pretty big deal. He was at the height of his talent and popularity. He’d recorded his famous “The Thrill Is Gone” about 14 years prior. It became his signature tune and a Blues classic. (B. B. was still in fine form when I saw him 20 years later in the same venue.)

Shooting Gigs – Pushing The Boundaries of B&W Film – By Tom Schulte

I might say, pushing the boundaries of film in this case is more like returning to its roots.

When rock ‘n roll and hard bop burst through the famed and now widely regarded as the golden age of music, that is, 50s-70s, the highest ISO film available was around 400-1000 (B&W of course). It’s difficult to think this level of light sensitivity would be enough to capture musicians in their element, when one could assume live music = low-light. And yet some of the greatest concert photography I’ve ever seen were shot on these (now broadly perceived as general purpose) B&W film stocks, particularly Tri-X.

Viewing a concert through a cell phone screen

Trying Concert Photography on Film – By Billy Sanford

I’ve been making photographs for most of my life. The first three decades on film, but it was always the traditional usage – family trips, memories with friends, special occasions. I bought a digital SLR when they came out, but it wasn’t until 2010 that I began to try and learn the basics of photography and to take pictures as an activity in and of itself. Coincidentally at that time I had several friends who were in bands. Those bands would play in local clubs on the weekends, and I would go to support them and bring along my camera. I thought it would be a great way to learn some of the basic skills as it relates to all the elements of the exposure triangle. And it was. As a result, those are times I’ve looked back on. Not just for the fun of seeing my friends performing on stage for a crowd. But for how those moments helped my own growth.

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