Getting Back into Band Photography

I was engaged recently to do a promotional photoshoot for Sydney band The Rubber Band (of which I was originally a member when it was starting, and in which I played a fill-in role on drums earlier this year).

I am also a musician, have been playing for 25 years, and last year retired from the band of which I played lead guitar for some six years.  In addition to that, I was doing photoshoots for other bands.

When I was asked to shoot the Rubber Band (great guys and girl, BTW), I welcomed the opportunity on multiple levels:

  1. I’d get to hang with the gang again;
  2. I’d produce some images of which both the band and myself would be happy; and
  3. the shoot would open the door to future opportunities.

The shoot produced some very pleasing images, and to my delight the band loved them.

Here’s one of Michelle belting out a song:

Michelle's Magnificence

Michelle’s Magnificence

I also did some video work on the night, and that renewed my dormant interest in video/cine work.  Once upon a time I wanted to become a cinematographer.

It was a fun night, and one of the rare opportunities these days I get to hear a live band without playing in it!

The experience renewed my interest in shooting bands, as well as video/cine work, which I never thought I’d want to do.

I’m looking forward to working with The Rubber Band again, and I can see some great opportunities ahead.

Here are a few more images from the shoot:

Joel in Sound Check

Joel in Sound Check

Paul and the Amazing Technicolour Stage Truck

Paul and the Amazing Technicolour Stage Truck


4 thoughts on “Getting Back into Band Photography

  1. Andy

    Hey mate,
    Been following your posts on whirlpool for quite some time with interest and decided to visit your website to see what you have been up to lately.
    The band pics are particularly interesting as I too used to be in bands (in the UK) and I did my first band/DJ shoot the other week here in Perth.
    Can I ask what lens you used?
    I am thinking of getting another prime…maybe 135mm f2 but wondered if this is too long for the kind of distances most venues will allow shooting from as per space restrictions?!?!
    Thanks in anticipation of a reply.



    1. Xenedis Post author

      Hey Andy.

      For band work (which I seldom do these days), I use my 35/1.4, 85/1.2 and occasionally 135/2. I have also used my 300/2.8, which I used on that most recent shoot.

      If you are shooting at fairly close proximity to the performers, a 35mm or 50mm lens should do the job; an 85 will get you tighter crops and a 135 even tighter crops.

      In my experience, I mostly don’t need longer focal lengths, but it all depends on the environment, so I usually go prepared.



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