The Lagan Sessions is now on summer hiatus. I’d only ever intended to go once or twice to try my hand at taking photographs in a gig setting. Instead, I found I was drawn back there week after week for the people and the music.
Every single artist I photographed over the course of the thing (something like 30 different acts) was friendly and willing to let me take their photograph while they played. As a result I learned more about low light photography than I ever could have achieved elsewhere. It’s true that if you speak to someone who’s passionate about their hobby/profession they’ll be only to happy to share it with you.
Gig photography is different, light is only one of the many things you don’t control. Instead you have to work within the bounds of the setup finding light where you can and angles which work to complement the singer and the environment (who’s idea was it to put a red fire extinguisher at the side of the stage?). You also need to be conscious people are there to see and hear the musician, not stare at your ass or watch you run around in front of the stage.
I’ve given a lot of the musicians copies of the photographs I took of them. Certainly anybody who has turned up in the Flickr album is welcome to their photographs. Some I’m not so happy with for technical reasons, others I really love, but every single one of them was a result of the musician being absolutely brilliant.
The Lagan Sessions – I went for the photography, but stayed for the music.