Frequently Asked Questions

Hi all. In response to all the questions I receive, I thought I’d put together a little FAQ that may help answer some of the recurring inquiries I get. I really hope this helps. – Todd  (Todd Owyoung) Frequently Asked Questions:

How did you get into photography?

I’ve always been visually inclined and drew constantly as a kid. Around my first year at university, I decided that a camera was a good tool for an artist to have, so I saved to buy a manual focus film camera. I enjoyed driving a manual transmission car, so I assumed that I’d prefer a manual camera to one with autofocus. Nikon had just released the Nikon FM3a around this time, which I bought as my first camera.

How did you get started photographing concerts?

The first show I shot was in 2006 at a small club with about a one-foot stage and what felt like likek about four stage lights. I had a friend who was going to see the bands BR-549 and the Avett Brothers.  I wasn’t familiar with either bands at the time, so, on a whim, I brought my Nikon D70 and 50mm f/1.4. I figured that if I didn’t like the music, I could always entertain myself with photography. As it turned out, the bands were fantastic and I loved shooting them.

While I had a Nikon D2x at the time, I brought the lowly D70 because I didn’t want the D2x to reek of cigarette smoke. Naturally this aversion to bringing expensive camera gear to smoky dives went out the window immediately.
A week later, I had tickets to see Andrew Bird. Emboldened by the thrill of that first gig, I decided to contact Andrew Bird’s publicist about photographing the show. Even though I wasn’t shooting for any publication, she was nice enough to set up credentials, which I think I was very luck with. After that first photo pass, I was hooked.

Do you have any advice on starting out and becoming established?

My best advice would be to start out shooting in smaller venues that don’t have a restriction on cameras. These camera-friendly venues might be bars or small clubs – anywhere that has live music is an opportunity for practice and image making. In addition to being able to bring your camera and shoot without being hassled at these smaller shows, in most instances you’ll be able to photograph the entire performance, which will increase your chances of producing compelling images. Moreover, I’d recommend digging into a music scene that you love, but also being open to photographing a variety of bands as well. Diversifying your work will show range and the ability to work with different types of musicians. After building up a collection of work, put together a portfolio and approach publications as a contributing photographer. Contact local magazines, newspapers, blogs, and websites – anything editorial source that covers music in your area. Having a publication backing you is the single best way to secure credentials for concerts, and to graduate to larger bands and bigger venues.

How do you set up photo passes with bands? Who do you contact?

When shooting on assignment, one’s editor at the publication generally sets up photo credentials. However, if I’m requesting credentials on my own, the band’s publicist is usually my main contact. Depending on the size of the band, the manager or band members themselves may be able to set you up, but a publicist usually handles the list. Alternatively, in some markets, promoters may control the guestlisting and be able to set you up with the appropriate credentials.

Your shots are really clear, do you ever use flash?

For many of the gigs I shoot, I work exclusively with the stage lighting of the event, for a couple of reasons. First, flash is very rarely allowed. Second, I usually prefer to use the available light to capture the look and feel of the concert as closely as possible. Fast lenses, proper technique, and good timing go a long way toward producing crisp shots, even in low light. That said, I do use flash when the opportunity and situation lend themselves to it. For larger tours with their own dedicated lighting rigs, flash is often unnecessary. For other situations, flash can be a great asset for creating dynamic images in what might otherwise be flat lighting.

I see you use Nikon. I thought all concert photographers use Canon. My grandma uses Canon. What gives?

At the end of the day, it’s only gear. I happen to shoot with Nikon at the moment, but I’m interested in results, not brands. Both Nikon and Canon make great pieces of kit. If you’re curious about the tools I use, check out my Gear Guide for a list of the gear I use and my thoughts on the role each piece serves. I’ve also included some general recommendations on camera equipment for concert photography.

What camera settings do you use?

AF: I use continuous mode (AF-C) most of the time, occasionally changing to single mode (AF-S) if continuous mode is not appropriate for the lighting or subject. I use single-point focusing. WB: I use auto WB most of the time. Happily with my D3 and D700, I find this modus operandi is quite accurate most of the time, and shooting RAW, I can always make minor tweaks if the WB as-shot isn’t appropriate. Very rarely will I pre-set WB. Camera settings: Really, I keep most of my settings pretty stock, with the default sharpening, color, contrast, etc.

Can you recommend good lenses for concert photography?

I personally use the following gear:

For other thoughts on lenses suitable for shooting live music photography, please see my article on Choosing Lenses for Concert Photography. Also, check out the Gear Guide , which details all the gear that I use and endorse for shooting shows. For those on a budget, here’s a quick list of popular and affordable lenses that are popular choices for live music shooting:

  • 50mm f/1.4 or f/1.8 (available in all major mounts)
  • Sigma 30mm f/1.4
  • Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8
  • Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8
  • Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8
  • Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8

Do you shoot RAW or JPG?

I shoot exclusively in RAW with my cameras for the greatest flexibility and quality of the final files.

What photo software do you use?

I’m new to music photography and have a few questions. Do you think you can give me some advice?

If neither this page nor the Gear Guide answered your questions, try doing a search on the topic you’re trying to get more info about. Unfortunately I’m not able to reply to all individual emails and try to share as much as I can here on www.ishootshows.com for the maximum benefit. Thanks very much.

How do you pronounce your last name

Oh-Yung — like “O’Young”.


There are 62 comments

Add yours
  1. Mike

    Hi. I just started shooting concerts and I was wondering: If you’re not able to shoot by the stage, 1. where do you shot from? and 2. what lenses do you use? thanks.

  2. Todd

    Mike,

    If I’m not up front, there are usually other restrictions, like shooting from only the sides, front of house, or the sound/mixing board that dictate where I can shoot.

    In that case, I’ll use my 70-200mm f/2.8.

  3. Mike

    thanks…i was just wondering cause i have a couple larger venues coming up and i dont know if ill be right up front or not…again, thanks!!

  4. Todd

    If there isn’t a dedicated photo pit, it might be worth getting there early and just packing in on the floor with everyone else.

    It can be a hassle, but you’ll be as close as you can (barring any restrictions).

  5. Kent

    Todd,

    Congratulation on such an amazing and informative site.
    We can feel you absolutely enjoying your work.

    I would like to find out what are your normal procedures in finding out the correct exposure prior to your shoot? I believe the lighting in concerts makes it very hard to
    achieve this, but you did a great job in every photos.

  6. Todd

    Hey Kent,

    Thanks for the kind note, I appreciate it. I do love music photography, and I’m glad it shows.

    Concert lighting is certainly very variable. Part of the approach is learning how to internalize different settings throughout a set and the intuitively dial this in as the lighting changes. Part of it is certainly a little luck.

    I’ll be posting a tutorial on exposure and metering sooner rather than later, so please look out for that.

    In the meantime, here’s a response that I recently posted in the Flickr Concert Photography group to a similar question:

    I always shoot in manual mode. During the alloted time, there are usually several distinct lighting schemes that will have their own metering requirements.

    As the lighting changes, I’ll shoot a test exposure, review the histogram, and then establish a baseline for that scheme. As the lighting scheme changes, I’ll repeat this process.

    If I think the lighting is changing for the brighter or dimming down within a scheme, I’ll make changes to the shutter speed or ISO (I rarely change aperture, especially when shooting with f/2.8 zooms, which I use wide open).

    For me, a lot of shooting comes down to internalizing the lighting patterns and making changes accordingly as the light changes. Much of the time I’m not going off the meter at all.

  7. Kenny

    Big Todd – Looking forward to your A-Z tutorial about concert photography… But, until then, could you address how you approach focus. Spot, Center Weight, Total Avg, Multi AF Points, etc. So many options.. do you typically stick with one and run with it?
    Thanks.. keep rockin’ bro!

  8. Gabbi

    Hey todd!
    first off, your amazing at what you do, so inspiring!
    ive recently been doing a lot of punk rock shows, its so much fun! but coz the movement from the acts are so fast do you recommend that i use a fast shutter speed? but the lighting is always low! im currently using a nikon d80 with a af-s nikkor 12-24 and a VR 18-200. please if you can help, that would be so kind! x

  9. Todd

    Hey Gabbi,

    Glad to hear you appreciate the work. Punk, hip hop, and hardcore shows are among the hardest, because there’s always movement on stage.

    For really active performers,when you’re using available light, sometimes upwards of 1/250 or faster is necessary. It just depends on how fast everything is moving. And at some point, AF speed becomes an issue, too, even beyond freezing motion.

    Do you use flash?

  10. Gabbi

    Hey Todd,
    (thanks for replying to my previous question by the way, really appreciate it)
    i don’t use flash, coz it can ruin the atmosphere, but if i have too, i try to bounce the light off the walls. What would you recommend i do?
    Also if i shoot at 1/250 or faster in a low light, the image may be pretty dark. Would you then consider, in a editing software, to try and boost the exposure and levels?
    I really appreciate your help! love your new photos too! x

  11. Todd

    Punk shows are really tough, just judging from the hardcore shows I’ve done. The singers are all over the place and the lighting is often very low.

    One approach would be just to get a little messy with it and let a little motion blur occur in the shots. I know it’s really easy to get caught up in technically perfect execution (I know I do), but given the circumstances, conveying energy, emotion, and nailing composition may serve you best.

    But yes, you could try to freeze motion using a higher shutter speed at your max ISO and then bring up in post. This is going to result in more noise — again, a compromise.

    Hope this helps, let me know if you have more questions.

  12. Davis

    Dude,
    Let me start by saying your shots are Hot!!!! Best I have seen at the Fox…
    Ok, now do you do any Photoshop post processing for the images in your Portfolio gallery or when you turn in images to the Magazines or whomever employs you? Do you shoot concerts in RAW?

  13. Matt

    Todd,

    I’m constantly amazed by your photos and I feel like I’ve learned a lot from you. But I have a couple of questions.

    1. When you were starting out and getting photo passes on your own, what did you say when the promoter (or whoever) asks what outlet(s) you shoot for? I’m running into this problem and sometimes I feel like I can’t get the time of day from them if I’m not shooting for someone. I bought a domain for my music photography and hope to have that up soon but what can I do to seem more legitimate?

    2. I’m amazed by how low the noise is in your images at such high ISOs. I’m using a D300 and apparently it’s only supposed to be about a stop noisier than your D3. What level of in camera NR are you using and are you using software for NR in post (like Noise Ninja?) I’d love to hear more about your workflow as that is an area I’m getting hung up on.

    Thanks!

  14. Todd

    Hey Matt,

    Thanks very much, I’m to hear glad you find ishootshows.com a useful resource!

    To answer your questions:

    1) The reality is that unless one has a connection to a media outlet by which a publicist can generate press for their client, it is not in the interest for the powers that be to issue a photo pass.

    The very best advice I can offer is to join an established publication, or to shoot anything and everything at camera-friendly venues building up a portfolio to do so.

    Aside from having the backing of an established media source, I would suggest providing the contact with all the information they need to make the decision upfront. If they have ask you for more information (i.e., “who are you shooting for?”), then that’s already one strike against you.

    2) I always shoot RAW and I use the D3′s NR set to “normal.” In addition, during conversion to JPG, I often choose the “better quality” setting for NR in Nikon Capture NX, which eliminates irregular, clumpy grain and introduces a much finer look overall. I rarely use extra NR beyond this unless I am shooting at ISO 12800 or higher, at which point I may turn to Noise Ninja for help.

    Hope this helps, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any additional comments!

  15. Sharon

    I have had the D3 for a couple of months and everything was going great at first but on the last couple of shoots everything has gone totally wrong and I do not know why. Please can you help!

    I shoot (NEF) RAW + JPEG FINE and I use the D3.

    The Jpegs are too saturated and the colours almost bleed into each other, it looks terrible. And the Raw images look totally washed out.

  16. Todd

    Hey Sharon,

    Have you changed your Picture Mode settings on the D3? It almost sounds like the camera is in Vivid mode now from the way you describe the JPGs.

    However, on the RAW files, what are you using to convert the NEFs? Unless you use Nikon Capture NX, the color of the files may look off. I’ve found Nikon’s own software, slow as it is, the best for color fidelity and overall pleasing rendition.

  17. Elizabeth

    Hey Todd, thank you for posting all of this on your website :) I’ve been reading around and it’s been EXTREMELY helpful, and put me on the right track to knowing what I need to about photographing concerts.

    I have a question. I’m fairly certain I want to go to local newspapers and websites soon and volunteer to shoot for free in order to gain more experience + hopefully a photo pass after I shoot some weeks of shows to get a hang of it. I’m just curious, when you’re photographing for a newspaper or website, and they set up the credentials, is a photo pass all you need to get in, or do you need a ticket as well? I’m just wondering that if I were to go that route to become established if I would have to pay for a ticket, which I don’t really want to do… costs add up, haha. I have this sinking feeling that this is a really stupid question, but oh well.

  18. Todd

    Hi Elizabeth,

    When you are credentialed to photograph a band, whether or not you need a ticket will often depend on the venue and/or band. Some venues require a ticket for entry, while others do not.

    Just to be sure, your editor should request a ticket and a photo pass.

    If you’re shooting for free, having to pay for a ticket is not a good arrangement, as you’re essentially paying to provide content for a publication that most likely generates ad revenue.

    Thanks for the question, I’m very glad to hear you enjoy the site!

  19. Elizabeth

    Thank you for the answer. That’s what I figured, which is why I felt almost stupid for asking! I just wasn’t sure what the ‘norm’ was : )

  20. Todd

    Hey Elizabeth, glad to help. I know getting into music photography can be a tricky thing.

    As you start shooting for different outlets, always make sure your work is valued. While you may not get paid right away, you’re still providing a service with your concert photography. And one more piece of advice: wear earplugs.

  21. Gabbi

    Hi Todd
    just writing regarding the N.E.R.D. contact. I can imagine how difficult it must of been getting a photo pass. But being a fan of their music and seeing your photos of their performance, i am willing to knock on the doors too. if you can email me
    [email protected] just that i don’t have your email add. Thanks so Much for all your help.
    Gabbi x

  22. Amanda Elliott

    Hey Todd,

    I found your site via your photos of Ludo (which were awesome btw, they’re one of my favorites!) and you’ve got a lot of great photos here! I just started doing concert photography recently myself and poking around your site I found some really useful info. Keep up the awesome work. :D

  23. Max

    Hi,

    Been digging your work on flickr.

    Just a quick question, what are your tips on watermarking and the correct way of doing it. What do you use or recommend?

    :-)

    Thanks.

  24. Corey Douglas

    I just wanted to say this is by far the most perfect resource for live photography. i have the utmost respect for how you answer everyone’s questions in a professional and informative matter- truly an inspiration. i’ve read over most of the site and the only question i have right now is do you tend to focus manually or autofocus? i just bought the nikkor 1.8 50mm prime lens and didnt realize the autofocus wont work on my d40x…

  25. court de

    thank you
    seriously enjoy this site
    question: when contacting publicist do you email/call?
    and what kind of stuff do you say… I am sure it’s not along the lines of “I am #1 fan and i love photography and really want to be backstage” so how/what do you say that gets’ you that pass :)

    Thanks again for the knowledge
    court de

  26. Kris

    I have a few questions. You mention about contact a publicist to get passes. Correct me if I am wrong, but I have heard about going through record companies for work too. Of course I was told this years ago, is it true or is it only true with certain kind of jobs?

    Have you every tour with a band? If no, do you know how about getting this kind of work? If so, how did you go about doing it? What kind of prep did you have to do? This is one area I would like to work in and I was wondering how someone got this kind of work and what to expect when doing it and of course how to you prepare for going on the road.

    Are there any dos and don’ts when shooting shows? Anything that would be annoying to either the people on stage, people watching the show or both, that would get you kick out of the show or even way to loss future jobs (or the possible of)?

  27. Wayne

    Hi Todd,

    This blog is amazing…so much good information! Thank you for writing it and replying to the comments on this page.

    I’ve been shooting with the Rebel XT for almost a year now and have really shot the hell out of it. I am now looking to upgrade but can’t afford the jump to something like the Nikon D3. What would you recommend? What do you think of the new Nikon D90? The $1200 cost of that is probably the MOST I could spend.

    My day job is shooting and editing video for a music site but I get the chance to do lot’s of photography of bands as well. Mostly when they come into our little studio but I recently did my first photo pit shoot at Warped Tour that went pretty well but I wasn’t happy with the lack of sharpness and overall tone quality.

  28. Monica

    Hi Tood,
    Your site is great, love your work. I also shoot music, at the moment I freelance, but I’m looking to work with a magazine or a website, basically looking for something more regular so I can stop shooting all the other stuff that I shoot to pay the bills and focus on my music photography! Any advice? You can see my work at http://www.monicaschipper.com
    Thanks!
    Monica

  29. Lauren

    Hi Todd,

    First, just wanted to tell you that you job is absolutely amazing…you make us dream!

    And I also had a question about getting passes for shows : what really is a “publicist” and where can we find a way to contact them? I mean, I’ve been looking on the bands’ websites, and I didn’t find anything which leads me to thoses kind of people…
    Is there a “proper way” to contact them?

    I really need help on this point, because I work for a webzine and I need to find a solution about that problem…

    I also would like to create a good portfolio and maybe find a stage or something with a professional photographer (do you know if photographers are glad to have young useless little ones who want to learn with them? =] )

    Thank you so much for any answer… and of course merry christmas!!

    Cheers,

    Lauren

  30. Todd

    Hi Lauren,

    A band’s publicist is responsible for arranging and generating press for their client. A publicist will send out press releases and tour schedules, and also coordinate interviews and media passes.

    A publicist isn’t always listed on a band’s website and it may take a little work to find the right contact.

    As far as other photographers, I’d reach out to established pros in your area to see if you can shadow them. It wouldn’t hurt to ask!

    Hope this helps.

  31. Laura

    Hey Todd. I’m 15 and enojy both music and photography more than anything else. I have been attending a lot of concerts the last year or so and taking concert pictures is my favorite part of the expiriance. My problem is that I’m never at venues early enough to get very close to the front(my parents won’t allow it) and I’m sure that no one would ever give me a photo pass because of my age. Any advice on how to get some nice pictures or how to obtain a photo pass despite my age?

  32. Todd

    Hi Laura,

    No publicist has ever asked me my age. Unless you bring it up, I don’t think it’s really an issue.

    As for getting up to the front, there are ways to do so without getting to the venue super early. For one thing, I’d suggest going to smaller shows where the crowds may be thinner, which may allow you to get up front. Also, just being friendly with people and making your way up is another possibility. I know it’s this latter option is intimidating, but you’d be surprised what people will do to accommodate someone with a camera! Hope this helps.

  33. Jenn

    Hi Todd,
    I am about to purchase the nikon D90 and a 50mm f/1.8D AF nikkor lense. I am interested in concert photography and this will be my first SLR camera. I was wondering if you could recommend any good starter zoom lenses.
    Thanks
    Jenn

  34. Lauren

    Hey Todd.
    I love your pics! I’m an amateur, i would love to shoot concerts. It’s been my dream for a while and your faqs really helped. I was wondering if it’s a paying job? I would still do it as i love photography but i’m just curious. Thanks

  35. Heather

    Hello Todd,

    I really enjoy looking at your work, I aspire to it in every single way! I myself do a lot of music photography and I’m starting to really think about what I want from each photo. I am happy with most of my final results now but I want to push it that little bit further to get the perfect shots but I’m not exactly sure how. I was wondering if you could tell me what really makes a good photo? Does anything else matter if the eyes are in focus? Will my f/1.8 cope in most situations or should I invest in a f/1.4…? As much help with this will be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks so much!
    Heather.

  36. Wendy

    Hey Todd–
    Not sure how I stumbled upon this site, but so glad I did! Shooting at the Blue October concert tomorrow night (ok, tonight, since it’s 4:30 a.m) and have found some great tips! I read the msg #38 from Laura asking how to get good pics if she can’t get there early enough due to parents, age, etc.
    You are more than correct in your response!! LOL!
    I’ve been shooting shows for a little over a year now, and it’s amazing how the crowd will just naturally move out of your way if you have a big camera strapped around your neck! Most of the time, a light touch on the arm or shoulder, and an occasional “excuse me for a moment” or “can I get in there for a sec” is usually all I’ve ever needed to say, if words were spoken at all! I’ve been at the edge of the stage for all shows, including right next to the speakers (I’d definitely recommend ear plugs!!!!), and in a spot a bit off to the side and back about 10 rows, but on a little ledge which is just high enough to put me above the crowd so I avoid a lot of the back-of-the-head crowd shots and still can get the full stage.
    Just be polite and not pushy. You’re not the paparazzi, so you don’t need to act like it. Just act professional and like you’re supposed to be there and know exactly what you’re doing (even if you don’t have the slightest clue!) If you seem professional, others often will view you as such. I’ve NEVER once been questioned or asked to move or asked who I’m with/shooting for or told I could only stand in a certain spot.

    So anyway– thanks for a great site and accurate, sound advice. :) I will definitely be bookmarking this page and looking through it again!
    Thanks,
    Wendy

  37. Duy

    Hey Todd,

    First off, great site. You may be one of the photographers that I’m actually interested in following on twitter haha. All that aside, do you have any advice on how to get published or even paid for the photos you’ve taken at a concert? I managed to get a few photo passes but don’t really know what to do afterwards.

    Thanks

  38. Taylor Mahaffey

    Jenn, I wanted to comment on your RIG you wanted to purchase. I have a D90 with a Nikon 50mm 1.8. I love this rig and its really LIGHTWEIGHT, unobtrusive, and crystal clear with good lighting. It also allows me to purchase FX lenses (full frame) and still use them on my DX camera. That way when I upgrade to a D700 or its next replacement, I wont have to go through and get all new lenses. 50mm 1.4 I found will give me better images with lower noise, but all close range and in bars you have to get your focus PERFECT, or you will really mess up a picture. Id rather buy the cheaper 70mm 1.8 and be done with it. I’m getting more people interested in my pictures, so I feel if I really NEED to stop down to 1.4, then the picture isn’t going to be good anyway. I think it takes a lot of skill to shoot at 1.4! By next lenses will be both the lenses Todd uses, but Im sticking with the D90 for now. Why? Its the best DX camera you can get, and its CHEAP ($800 body)

    Todd, Sorry to steal your thunder man I just wanted to give a little advice to jens post. Keep up the good work man! Im sure ill run into you one of these days in the pit.. OUT

  39. Vero

    Hi Todd!
    First of all, thank you SO much for bringing such good advices and tips for shooting live concerts.
    It helped alot, but I feel like I need to know some other things.
    I use a Nikon D80, and I have most of the lenses on your list (but no 70-200mm…for now)
    I’ve done a couple of concerts, mostly for friend’s bands and it’s always the same, the light settings for the stage were…let’s say ‘not-so-good’ to be polite. So, I had to use my flash. But, it made me lose all the ambiant lights. So I was wondering, how do you keep that nice effect, with the spotlights. We still see and feel the lights, they are so sharp in every picture you take. And I wish I could do that too. I think this is my weak spot. Maybe I don’t use my flash properly, or maybe I should not use it at all. But i’m totally lost now.
    If you have any advice for me, i’d apreciate SO MUCH.

    Thank you for your time, and keep doing such an amazing work, hoping someday, i’ll be as good as you :)

    Vero

  40. Colin Malsingh

    Can you tell me if you use ear plugs or anything to protect your hearing whilst working Todd?

    I’m just thinking that at 4+ shows a week, your exposure is higher than most.

  41. Paul

    Todd,

    I’m shooting a D5000 i just bought. I am taking your advice and buying a Nikor 50mm f 1.4 AF. The D5000 doesn’t have a focusing motor so it won’t autofocus without the SWM technology. My question is should I buy the AF-S or should I force myself to learn with AF (manual) lens?

  42. Shonie Joy

    Hi! I stumbled upon your site a month or so ago, and I have to say you push me to do more. My dream is to travel and shoot shows. I’ve taken quite alot of photos already for a year or two now, not as good as yours, but still. Your work is wonderful! I have a Nikon D80 and Sony Cybershot Point and Shoot, so my quality isn’t as amazing as yours, but hopefully one day I can upgrade more. I get nervous taking photos in front of people and such of bands at shows, and I know I shouldn’t and I should move more freely and get different angles and shots. My question is, do you get nervous when your moving around trying to find a good shot? How should I overcome it? And also, what type of file format is best to save your photos in? I’ve noticed .jpeg sort of takes away from some of my photos so I’ve been using .png lately. What do you think?

  43. Chelsea

    Hey Todd,

    This website is truly heaven sent! I am ecstatic that someone can capture all of the raw emotion in live music and still manage to help everyone else. But I do have a few questions and any answers would be greatly appreciated.

    Do you get to attend the shows with the photo pass after the photo pit, or do you need to buy an actual ticket for the concert?

    I am looking to make music photography my career but should I keep the day job to keep the water running and a roof over my head?

    And, lastly, do you know anything about being a band’s official tour photographer?

    Thank you so much for the inspiration and advice!

  44. Ashleigh

    Hey Todd,

    I was just curious, as far as your photography, how are you yourself payed? I don’t mean price-wise or anything. I mean, when you shoot shows, is it for yourself or is it for a magazine or something? And if/when it is for yourself, are you payed for attending the shows and giving them to the bands?

    I myself am trying to grow as a concert photographer. What you do is pretty much what I aspire to be, though my dream for the longest time has been to be a single bands’ tour photographer, but this comes first, obviously. Right now I work for a Newszine as a concert photographer and it’s one of the most amazing experiences. It’s not something that I see myself wanting to stop.

  45. marc1

    Hi Todd,
    really great photography, i started shooting concerts a year ago, and i also got real exited about this genre. Your blog is very interesting. Greetz from germany. Marc

  46. evil rose

    Hey Todd,
    Absolutely love your sight. You inspire me!!
    Luckily I was granted a press pass to a recent big name concert. I was extremely nervous and excited as i was firing away during the three songs. Now that I’ve uploaded them onto my computer I’m wondering..

    Do you find your photos need any or a lot of post editing (Photoshop, etc.) or are you getting what you shoot?

    Thank you for all you do!

    • Todd

      Adrian, I think the answer depends on how you shoot. If you’re often switching between the two zooms but are pretty much OK with the range, a second body makes more sense.


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