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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Performing Arts Talk 
Thread started 11 Oct 2015 (Sunday) 22:06
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Why does it seem like bands/artists don't like photographers?

 
the ­ flying ­ moose
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Oct 11, 2015 22:06 |  #1

I am relatively new to the concert photography scene so I am hoping that one of the more experienced shooters can help me answer this.

Far more often than not I will be shooting a concert and be told its from the back of the soundboard as "insert artist name here" doesn't like photographers and even in the pit, I have been warned that certain artists hate photographers and will try and spit on you. My last 7 shows, only 2 have been from the pit.

It seems odd to me to banish media photographers to the back of the soundboard but allow cameras from ticket holders on the floor. For example, my last show, I was stuck behind the soundboard, yet there was at least 10-15 cameras in the first 10 rows with flashes blasting, one lady even had a Canon t5i in the 3rd row snapping away. I just don't get the reasoning behind the artists not wanting "professional" photographers to get up close and personal, yet they don't appear to have issue with fans getting those up close shots.

I know its the prerogative of the artist to decide where the photographer goes and this isn't really me complaining, I am just more curious and trying to understand why things are done the way they are.




  
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texkam
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Oct 11, 2015 22:22 |  #2

Every artist I have shot understands the power of marketing. My sister shot a recent Elton John concert. Media was granted very good access, but only for a limited time. Depends on the artist.




  
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FarmerTed1971
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Oct 11, 2015 22:39 |  #3

2 and out.


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the ­ flying ­ moose
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Oct 11, 2015 23:04 as a reply to  @ FarmerTed1971's post |  #4

Most times, I am lucky to get one song. Usually, its 2 songs for each opening act and then one song for the headliner.




  
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maverick75
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Oct 11, 2015 23:28 |  #5

You're just shooting crappy artists. Change genres, funny as it sounds metal bands have been the most down to earth people I've met. Even invite me out to hang out and eat after the show. These aren't even small bands but world touring ones with massive followings.

The small unsigned bands are sometimes a pain to work with because for some reason they have egos, I understand confidence but you have to earn it.


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the ­ flying ­ moose
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Oct 12, 2015 01:35 as a reply to  @ maverick75's post |  #6

I do have fun with it. I enjoy the music for the most part and I enjoy chatting with other photographers. I am shooting for the local newspaper so I go to the shows I am sent to. Don't really have a choice in genres but concerts are a huge social gathering and I love being around that.

Out of the 15 or so bands I've photographed the worst for access (in order) are:

-Country. Every single country show has been back of soundboard and ridiculously difficult to deal with.
-Female artists. Every genre, if its a solo female headliner, back of soundboard.
-Oldies acts. Not only are they ridiculously strict about where to shoot from, their restrictions about usage are nuts. One act stated, photos could be used one time in publication, no web, social media or any other uses allowed. I just told the tour manager who asked me to sign it, "no thanks" and he was actually shocked I refused and had a couple words for me. Turns out no one signed it and they had no photographers at the show. Told me editor what happened and he was fine with it.

I am in a small Canadian town of about 80,000 people so huge shows are few and far between. In fact after next week, our next concert isn't til the end of April 2016.




  
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sirquack
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Oct 15, 2015 10:55 |  #7

I shoot a lot of local concerts, and mostly local and small touring bands. I have had the chance to shoot for larger touring groups and most of the time, it is 2-3 songs and out of the pit. The reasoning I have been provided is mostly due to they don't want to look sweaty and gross. The difference between you and a fan are the reasons they don't always let you in the pit.
Most of us spend time and money on our craft so therefore have more gear and talent. I have a couple of fast primes that let me get decent shots in low light. The casual fan usually has their cell phone or a consumer level camera and lens. They might get a shot that you can actually make out the performer, but note likely in a focus or light enough to get the performers face or sweat running down their face. So the performers are not worried about the casual fan who is shooting the show because the qualify of their photo is almost always not good anyway.
But I also know as a fan and not a person who is there specifically to shoot an event, I have been turned away more often then not when I show up with my "Big" camera and lens. So I am guessing the performers, venues, management know what to look for and specifically exclude us from the show with decent gear.
But I have shot all of the above listed folks and as long as you make an effort to work with the venue, performer or their management, you can usually get access that most fans would love to have.


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BushWacker
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Post edited over 2 years ago by BushWacker. (4 edits in all)
     
Jun 16, 2016 01:54 |  #8

I was shooting Burton Cummings at Montbleu casino in Tahoe a few weeks ago and he starts out the show with shoot all the photo's you want. He says I don't understand why artists don't want their photo's taken and I want all the publicity I can get. Then added but please be courteous to the person behind you. This comes from one of the biggest names in music, his show was great and I got super photos, thanks Burton... Click Here for full set: https://www.flickr.com …157667488428636​/lightbox/ (external link)


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banquetbear
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Jun 18, 2016 18:30 |  #9

the flying moose wrote in post #17741858 (external link)
It seems odd to me to banish media photographers to the back of the soundboard but allow cameras from ticket holders on the floor.

...the ticket holders are there for the music and are there because they are fans, they paid for to get into the show and they are taking photos so that they have memories of the night.

Professional photographers are there to make money.

Some bands will "banish" you because to be quite frank: you aren't their audience.


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Road ­ Dog
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Aug 04, 2016 09:44 |  #10

BushWacker wrote in post #18040903 (external link)
I was shooting Burton Cummings at Montbleu casino in Tahoe a few weeks ago and he starts out the show with shoot all the photo's you want. He says I don't understand why artists don't want their photo's taken and I want all the publicity I can get. Then added but please be courteous to the person behind you. This comes from one of the biggest names in music, his show was great and I got super photos, thanks Burton... Click Here for full set: https://www.flickr.com …157667488428636​/lightbox/ (external link)

I would venture a guess that there are more people alive today who don't know who Cummings is than who do...


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BushWacker
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Aug 22, 2016 17:32 as a reply to  @ Road Dog's post |  #11

Sad but true...


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FarmerTed1971
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Aug 22, 2016 18:14 |  #12

Can I Guess Who he is?


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BushWacker
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Aug 27, 2016 01:03 |  #13

LOL, yes but you only get 1 Guess!


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Why does it seem like bands/artists don't like photographers?
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