I’ve experienced a rollercoaster ride of emotions during the start of my career a few years ago. Sometimes I question if this is what I should really do, which is just right since questioning things sometimes keeps you on your toes. Although when I’m just [...]
Why Music Photography
I’m feeling a bit emo because of the weather, so bear with me. I’ve been getting questions asking me why I chose to do what I do.
I’m sure you all can relate on how deeply one feels for anything that has to do with music. It’s something that speaks to you directly yet at the same time has that unreachable quality when you’re actually faced with the makers of it. It’s like, “How can this musician understand what it is I’m going through? He or she is a complete stranger to me”. When you feel that moment happen for the first time, thus begins a tug of war — a possessive yet liberating relationship with a symphony of letters and notes.
About a decade ago, I knew nothing about the industry. As I’ve grown in this scene, I took it upon myself to make this part of my advocacy to help the music industry with whatever it is I can contribute. As I have seen with my own eyes and have myself affected with what happens when you see a struggling artist.
I don’t consider myself an events photographer, even though that’s how I started. The other night I had a shoot and made it clear with the people there that I wouldn’t shoot group shots of people and I was surprised to find out that they understood and knew and they just want gig shots of the performers and that they hired another photographer to do the group shots for them.
I’m neither demeaning other forms of photography (which I think is awesome and just as difficult) nor am I belittling the work that events photographers do. I went through that. It’s my personal choice to select which photos I produce. I chose to do that because my cause for doing what I do have pointed towards a different path. So I shifted, with no compromise, before I forget why I’m really here in the first place.
I’m really here to help musicians’ image be elevated in some way as fine art or any gig considered a historical event to help nourish the thriving industry.
So why call myself a music photographer if I’m only taking photos of the rock scene?
I used to call myself a rock photographer, but I have a thing with labels, it limits you. As a personal definition, I am unsure if other music photographers worldwide would agree with me is that if I only take photos of concerts, I’d call myself a concert photographer. But I dont. I call myself a music photographer, because apart from performances, I take behind the scenes shots, I take portraits, I take a photo anything that involves a musician in them. That’s why I decided to call myself a music photographer.
I’m not limiting myself to rock, just as how some rockstars collaborate with popstars and vice versa. I look at all of them as musicians, whether or not they’re doing a cover song. Hey, if they have an effect on people, they must be doing something right. So, I’d love to be there when the magic happens or even when it doesn’t.
I’m a music fan too and I do wish that sometimes there was someone who would kind of make me see stuff that I don’t get to see often. In my case I see mostly the struggle of musicians and how you see such great potential in these people left unheard that this is, I guess, the best way I know I could help. If it can help at least 1% of exposure for these people via the world wide web, I would. That’s why I’ve been encouraging everyone who is a fan of music to take great photos of the musicians that they love.
Maybe some of you may disagree, but I can see an insight within the industry that you’re probably not seeing or maybe I am not seeing something that you are seeing. Who knows? Maybe we’re just waiting for several bands to put out their new albums and everything will be alright again, kind of like having someone special in your life disappear and then when they’re back, it feels like they’ve never left.
Did I answer the question as to why I chose to be a music photographer?
There’s really not one straight answer, there are many reasons. This is like asking me why I love someone, and I can tell you so many things why, but there’s just not one word to describe it…
…or there is just none.