When someone asks me, ‘What do you like to shoot?”, more often than not I answer food. But sometimes my reply includes music. Not live shows, mind you, though I do love to attend a high energy concert. Instead, it’s music portraiture that I love. Getting to shoot portraits of bands around Charleston sends me back to my days at The University of Georgia’s Lamar Dodd School of Art where I received my BFA in photography. This nostalgia is not because I used to shoot bands in college, but because my curriculum at UGA focused on figuring out how a cohesive theme or series could express my inner art school mind — basically, get weird and call it art.
This is all fine and dandy in school, but as an editorial photographer, I seldom have a chance — or time — to get weird. That is with the exception of music portraiture. It is a challenge to not fall victim to the firing line brick wall background. Or the, God forbid train tracks option so many singer/songwriters put on their album covers. No, this is when I can do whatever I want with a band as a photographic collaboration. Most recently, I entered the realms of weirdness with the eclectic people who make up the 2016 City Paper Music Award winners.
Hunter Park always bring it when it comes to a photoshoot. I never know what I am going to get. The only clue I received this time around was when she let me know that she wanted to channel her inner Stevie Nicks.
Allison Ross was gracious enough to build this year’s CPMA award. The wire taxidermist is paving her path in the art world at a brisk pace. I have always been a fan of her work, and in this shoot I wanted to bring out her quick wit, while showcasing her general bad-assness.
A Godwin Falcon photoshoot is always a good time. I’ve photographed the boys twice during my tenure here at the City Paper. The guys take me back to Spring Break ‘98 in PCB. As with any Godwin Falcon show and spring break ‘98, only those who have been, truly understand.
Wolfgang Zimmerman has been grinding out recordings for local bands for the past few years. The drummer of Brave Baby produces some of the best regional sounds coming out of the peninsula. Knowing Wolfgang, I know he approaches his work as a true professional. This was an outtake from our shoot that represented that approach to his craft.
The fellas of Stop Light Observations trusted me enough to have a band shoot at the playground at Hampton Park. That trust was built by creating beautiful images out of a seemly boring space. These guys are killing it right now with their album TOOGOODOO. If you haven’t checked it out, you should give them a listen.
The City Paper Music Awards are tonight, Mon. Nov. 14 at the Pour House. The Pig Roast starts at 5 p.m., and the showcase kicks off at 7 p.m. $20 gets you into both, or stop in for the show for $10 tickets are available now.
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Help the Charleston City Paper keep Best of Charleston going every year with a donation. Or sign up to become a member of the Charleston City Paper club.