Photography from Mike Brooks /


Good photography here:

No not me….check out Keven Steele

One of these things is not like the other

Ah the great dialectic…Used in this sense:  the dialectical tension or opposition between two interacting forces or elements…..Contrast and conflict are always useful in photography, they create a natural tension.  Old and new, peaceful and violent…remember the great picture of the couple kissing with protesters and police in riot gear as a background?   These aren’t that good, but I think they are kind of funny, and it’s the contrast that makes them work…


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Buy Local

I like buying local when possible, especially good local craft beer.  It’s good to shoot local bands too.  If you are new, this is where you learn, but even if you have been around its a good way to hear some good music and make lasting friendships.  Last Friday I went and shot the Virgin Wolves, who were releasing their first full length CD.  Also playing in this show were my friends the Phuss, Mothership, and Trebuchet…..The show was great, and there was a lot more access, and more access gives you a chance to get better pictures…these are the Virgin Wolves, a terrific young band from Denton, TX

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See the Light

Photography is all about capturing the light, and concert photography gives us some unique opportunities.  I grew up shooting Kodachrome, and although it was far too slow for this kind of work, I use the same techniques…starting with underexposure.   All Dallas venues are now non smoking, so it helps when the club adds a little of the artificial stuff.  Shown here are the Japandroids @ Trees, Taken by Trees @ Granada, and Drowning Pool @ Trees



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Where I stand

I don’t like getting trapped right in front, center stage…too much mic in the face, not enough context.  I prefer close, stage left or right…and look for shots like this.  Sleigh Bells, Granada Theater, Dallas TX….and remember…Action—Reaction

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Another action/reaction shot I like, this one from the Diarrhea Planet show at Club Dada (Dallas Tx). Another good reason to use a wide angle lens, especially in a small venue where the band and the crowd are interacting

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Opinion: The biggest mistake in music photography

The biggest mistake I see most music photographers make is taking pictures of the musicians…Huh?

Good shows create energy, and good photography will capture that energy.  That’s what makes shooting rock and roll so fun…it’s that tribal, sweaty, chaotic, bouncing energy.  The best way to come home with a pedestrian set of photos is to just shoot the players in 3/4 vertical format….Sure, we all want a magazine cover, but enough is enough.  After my three songs in the pit were up, I pushed my way into the mosh pit to get a slice of the real action at Unsilent Night in Dallas.  Up close and personal, getting bounced around, holding the camera overhead and looking for shots like these:


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