John Rodden (of No Outlet) @ J.D. McGillicuddy’s

April’s been a super busy month for me so far, so I have tons of photos to share.  First and foremost, I’m happy to announce that I have joined the team over at Ear Nuggets as a contributor.  Check it out, especially if you’re looking for new music to listen to this summer.  As a music fan as well as a photographer, I’m excited to watch the project grow.

Now to the photos.  Last weekend I was booked fairly solid, but my buddy John told me he was playing an acoustic set at a nearby pub (J.D. McGillicuddy’s in Wayne, PA if anyone’s interested).  I had Friday night free after work, and rented a Canon EF 50mm ƒ/1.2L from BorrowLenses for the weekend, so I stopped by to hang and shoot a bit.  The 1.2L is a beast in a poorly-lit situation like the front area of a bar with the tables cleared.  Literally, there was only ambient light available and I rarely use flash shooting live music.  I think it kills the mood.  Even at an ISO of 2500, on the APS-C sensor of a Canon 7D I got some pretty awesome shots without having to do some extreme noise reduction.  I changed the autofocus to one zone to ensure there weren’t too many shots with the microphone as the focal point.  It’s no wonder this lens is so damn expensive!

Continue reading John Rodden (of No Outlet) @ J.D. McGillicuddy’s

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Shoshana Bean at Rockwood Music Hall

Spring finally seems to be on its way, and I will take the current “mid-sixties and rain” over the past “low-twenties and clear.”.  With this season change comes new hope, new projects, and the sudden panic that you have yet to file your taxes.  I figured I would post these shots before I get lost in a box of receipts.

Shoshana Bean has embarked on a whirlwind tour promoting her latest EP release, Shadows to Light, which dropped at the end of last year.  Shadows to Light is an entirely acoustic recording which includes a stripped-down “Runaway Train,” and a brilliant cover of Sia’s hit single “Chandelier.”  Bean was back in New York City for one sold-out acoustic performance at Rockwood Music Hall’s Stage 2.  Those in attendance were treated to a duet with Eden Espinosa (also a former Elphaba in Wicked), as well as some throwback tunes (namely her infamous 2008 release, “Naomi,” a large departure from her current sound).

To catch Shoshana Bean near you (she will be performing in Hawaii and the United Kingdom in the coming months), visit her official website for ticket info.  And to see the photos, go past the jump.

All photos were shot on the Canon 7D mounted with a Canon EF 24-70mm ƒ/2.8L II USM lens.

Continue reading Shoshana Bean at Rockwood Music Hall

Winter Storm Thor; Blog Update

First off, please excuse the new bare-bones blog theme.  I’m currently shopping around for a premium theme to make the most out of my blog in 2015, but I want to make sure I’ve found the perfect one.  In the mean time, I needed some sort of change.

Winter was something I definitely did not have to deal with last year when I lived in Los Angeles.  This was not the case for 2014-2015.  I would even go out on a limb to declare it the worst winter I’ve experienced since 2006-2007 (because I didn’t live here last winter).  Winter makes it hard for me to do anything.  Apparently I become some sort of hibernating animal, and I only emerge when completely necessary.  Needless to say, I stepped away from the camera for two months because I stepped away from my life (I believe this is called Seasonal Affective Disorder).  I’m really looking forward to dealing with that next year, since it’s not something I can ever truly do again.

March actually came in “like a lion” in the shape of Winter Storm Thor, which decided to remind the East Coast that although it was the month of March, it was still in fact, Winter.  This season was filled with false predictions of large snowfall totals for Philadelphia (sorry, Boston), so I did not expect I would be shoveling my car out from a foot of snow on March 5; but that is what I did.  And then I bit the bullet and went outside with my camera:

Continue reading Winter Storm Thor; Blog Update

Happy New Year; Remember Jones @ Asbury Lanes

First and foremost, Happy 2015!  I “took the holidays off” except I was actually silently working away on my new portfolio, now hosted on PhotoShelter!  Also, I’m staying in Philadelphia (insert celebration emojis here)!  I have truly fallen in love with this city once again (aside from the winter — that part still sucks) and I am excited to explore the music scene here, as well as in my hometown of New York City.  Even though my home base will be here on the East Coast, I haven’t given up on the West.  I already have two trips booked out west for 2015: back in my second home of Los Angeles (Feb. 5 – Feb. 13) and hitting up Seattle in late August.  I have recently become fascinated with urban exploration, so if there are any photographers in those areas interested in linking up, give me a shout!

And now onto the actual content.  I finally had the pleasure of shooting my good friend, extraordinarily talented human Anthony D’Amato on January 16th.  This gig came on the heels of Anthony debuting his new stage persona, Remember Jones, at the end of last year (check out his bang-heard-round-the-world cover of Van Morrison’s “Caravan” here please and thank you).  D’Amato has been involved in the music scene with his bands The Live Debate! and Anthony D’Amato and the Emancipation Congregation (also… YouTube it).  The performance I covered last week was part of the Light of Day Festival benefitting the Light of Day Foundation. Fun fact: the lectric set broke venue records by having the largest amount of people on the Asbury Lanes stage at one time.  After you check out the photos, download Remember Jones’ cover of Smashing Pumpkins’ “Bullet With Butterfly Wings.”  All images shot on the Canon 7D with the EF 85mm ƒ/1.8 USM lens.

Check out Remember Jones on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram!

Continue reading Happy New Year; Remember Jones @ Asbury Lanes

CMJ 2014: New Zealand Showcase @ The Studio at Webster Hall

As I continue with my CMJ recaps, I want to thank everyone for their comments and viewership!  This is the most traffic my blog has had in a long while.  I’m glad to see people are appreciating new music as much as I am.

The New Zealand Showcase was my first assignment at CMJ.  I’d previously shot upstairs at Webster Hall before, but never in the Studio; which is located underneath the main auditorium.  The Studio at Webster Hall is a very intimate venue to say the least, and quite the contrast to the multi-level behemoth upstairs.  Inside, folks were passing around a variety of Kiwi appetizers  to prime the crowd for the impending New Zealand takeover of New York City.  October 21st’s bill consisted of four artists: Chelsea Jade (a sonic artist who implements field recordings of everyday sounds to punctuate her music), Doprah (a self-proclaimed “sinister and evil cult which lures young people into drug-taking”), “future funk” quintet Orchestra of Spheres (whom use a variety of homemade instruments), and Popstrangers (a trio of New Zealand transplants based in London delivering a blend of grunge, pop, garage rock, etc., the product of which creates a very distinct sound).

Be sure to check them all out after viewing the photos laying past this jump!

Continue reading CMJ 2014: New Zealand Showcase @ The Studio at Webster Hall

CMJ 2014: The Delta Riggs @ Pianos

I will be covering “Southern Exposure” in two parts: today’s post (which highlights The Delta Riggs), and a later recap of the whole showcase.

If time travel were a thing, I would 100% send myself to New York City in the 1970s so I could spend my evening watching The Ramones, Blondie, Talking Heads, and Television perfect their music while watching Hilly Kristal’s dog shit on the floor of CBGB.  Unfortunately time travel isn’t a thing, but that doesn’t stop me from pretending…

My last assignment of the 2014 CMJ Music Marathon was down on the Lower East Side at Pianos––a venue on Ludlow which was at one point a two-story piano dealership.  The façade of Pianos seems to have been left relatively unchanged since the 70s, so it was off to a good start.  The showcase I was covering on October 23rd was called “Southern Exposure,” highlighting various musical acts from Australia.  The show was a challenge to shoot; there was little available light from Pianos’ rep plot and there was little space to move around.  Against my better judgment, I shot at ISO4000 on my Canon 7D with an attached EF50mm ƒ/1.2L USM rented from BorrowLenses.

The Delta Riggs took the stage midway through the six-hour-long showcase.  A five-member rock band from Melbourne, they immediately launched into an electric set that once again, transported me back to the 1970s LES rock club scene.  Suddenly I didn’t care about the ISO noise, the low shutter speed or the shitty lights.  Because when a band moves this much (frontman Elliott Hammond chipped his tooth on the microphone at one point… I’m serious), bring on the motion blur!

Continue reading CMJ 2014: The Delta Riggs @ Pianos

“GET LOST”; Hybrid of the Streets – Ariyahna

What in the hell is “Hybrid of the Streets?”  Good question.  

In short, “Hybrid of the Streets” is a personal project of mine that combines the feel of street photography with the look of an environmental portrait.  Everyday humans with an unorthodox sense of style posing on the street, but with higher production value.  The name derives from my first model, who reposted one of my photos to Instagram and sent it to Twitter: because of the 140 character limit, the name was cut short.  So I took it.

I have always been fascinated by “street” fashion.  My fashion sense has always been unique, and it has definitely evolved with time.  During high school, I would essentially take whatever Gwen Stefani was wearing and translate it into menswear.  As my taste broadened, I began to pull influences from other cultures: Rockabilly, punk, formalwear, even some hip-hop.  My fashion sense has also transformed with each location I’ve moved––most recently, the West Coast.  My residence in California introduced me to surf wear and taught me that just wearing “shorts and a t-shirt” could be exciting as well.

I worked with Ariyahna years ago and watched her style evolve via Instagram.  I knew she was the perfect model to begin this exploration, and I photographed her on a playground last week in Philadelphia.  Canon 7D; Sigma 10-20mm; Canon Speedlite diffused with a 60″ umbrella.

Follow Ariyahna on Instagram: @highimariyahna.

Continue reading “GET LOST”; Hybrid of the Streets – Ariyahna