As someone who works around musicians a lot, there are a few mistakes which I commonly see made. One of those mistakes is not getting professional band photos made up.
Many instead opt for photos taken on their iPhone, or their mate’s consumer camera. While these often aren’t the worse quality images with today’s technology, they hardly make you stand out from the crowd. And if you’re not aiming to stand out from the crowd, you won’t really get noticed.
Today we’re going to take a look at why it’s important to get a good quality photographer to take your band or music artist photos, and also give some tips on how to get these good quality images. In addition to our guide with ideas for band photo shoots, you’ll have much of the knowledge you’ll need to get your first photos taken.
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Why It’s Important To Hire A Pro Band Photographer
We are in the era of information overload. People are constantly bombarded with information, advertisements, promotions, marketing messages, branding, and conversations. This goes for fans, artists, press, and music industry people a-like.
Not to mention almost everybody is generating content now in some form, and doing it regularly.
We can’t possibly process even a fraction of the content, messages, and imagery we’re faced with each day. So most of us, even if we don’t realize it, have created filters to only process what’s most relevant to us.
As a musician, often times you only have a matter of seconds to make an impression and grab someone’s attention. If you fail, you get forgotten with thousands of others who didn’t make the cut.
Good quality stand out pictures are a perfect form of content to grab instantaneous attention, especially in online mediums. You can evoke emotion and inspire action in a moment. Don’t waste that opportunity on sub par imagery; they won’t get you fan’s attention in the way professional ones will.
More Reasons It’s Important To Have Professional Band Photos Taken
Bloggers and press people need professional, quality, and high resolution images. It’s one of the first things they look for when considering to give artists coverage.
Your chances of getting on any reputable publications are pretty much non-existent without them. They are essential elements to a professional electronic press kit and to being taken seriously in the music industry.
But that’s just the bare minimum requirement of your photographic representation. You’re expected to have professional, quality, high resolution images. However, if you really want to get noticed you need even more than that. You need a consistent brand image from your photos, to your music, to your videos, to your web presence. One that stands out and catches the attention of a specific audience.
You should make a conscious effort to create this brand.
It’s not just fans, or even press people that will make snap judgments of you based off your pictures. Concert promoters, booking agents, managers, label representatives, radio directors, music supervisors; anyone that you might hope to come into contact with your music will all do the same.
And it’s not just your press kit that needs good pictures.
Your website, social media posts, poster designs, album artwork, and more will all benefit from them.
In a world of infinite choices and sources competing for attention, people judge books by their covers because they have to.
If you want someone to lend you their ears you need to impress their eyes first.
Tips For Getting Quality Pictures That Get You Noticed
Ok, so here are some tips for getting good quality, professional band photographs taken.
It’s a good idea to look at other musician’s images for inspiration. Figure out what emotions you want your music to make people feel, and make sure your images capture the same feeling.
Don’t just leave it up to whatever the photographer thinks is best.
You need to know who your audience is, as well as why and how your images are going to catch their attention. You also need to know what makes them different from everything else.
The more refined and focused your efforts are at defining these things, the better off you’ll be when it’s time to select a photographer and plan your photo shoots. If you know what results you want your pictures to achieve, it’s more likely that you and your photographer can work together to capture the images that achieve those results.
Many musicians pay for studio time to have their music recorded, mixed, and mastered professionally. But a lot of those same people are also getting free band photos from their amateur photographer buddy. Those people are missing the value professional photos have, and the impact they can have on getting people to listen to their music.
Don’t fall into that trap.
Research local photographers around your scene. Is their a local artist catching a lot of attention that always seems to have awe-inspiring photos? Figure out who their photographer is and what their rate is. If they’re working with local bands, chances are they are affordable.
Remember that price isn’t always an indicator of quality. Make sure the creative people you have on your team understand and buy into your vision and have the skill set to help bring it to life. You can find incredible photography and design work within your budget if you align yourself with the right people.
Also, think intentionally about the purpose of the images. Are they going to be used for an album cover? Or are they press shots? Are they going to be used online, or for print as well? Are they going on a 11×17 poster? These are important considerations to convey to your photographer and/or designer.
How important are good pictures in your music career? If you want to get heard, they are almost as important as your music itself.
Are you guilty of not giving your image content the attention it deserves? Maybe it’s time to get some new pictures and spice up your branding presence.
So what’s your view about the importance of good pictures in your music career? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.