Corey Woodruff: Meet the Best Music Photographers in St. Louis

Categories: Best Of

What makes a professional photographer as opposed to an amateur?

Three things come to mind: consistently delivering high quality work, knowing your gear so that you can react quickly to the unexpected, and conducting yourself as professionally as possible. That means shooting without flash, being mindful of other photographers and their sightlines, and staying out of the way of the fans -- they paid to be there!

30 Seconds To Mars.jpg
Photo by Corey Woodruff.

Pick one of the photos you've submitted and tell us a little about it: Where was it shot, who is featured and (most importantly) how did you capture it? We'd love to hear logistical description or technical breakdowns or whatever else you want to tell us.

The 30 Seconds to Mars show was the first big concert I shot and my first at The Pageant, so I was driven to bring home some great images. But when the stage crew told us we couldn't shoot the band from the photo pit at the apron of the stage, I had to improvise. It turned out that the band had planned a dramatic curtain drop to open the show and it would be falling right into the pit. I talked my way past an usher into the balcony and camped out, awaiting the drop. I guessed at the proper camera settings given the previous band's lighting rig, triple checked everything, and framed up my shot. As soon as the stage lights fired a blinding white salvo at the crowd, they responded with a roar and raised their fists as the curtain plummeted from the rafters. My heart was pounding as I held the shutter button down, machine-gunning frames the whole time. I was handsomely rewarded with several great photos of that show but this one remains one of my faves.

Strawfoot Halloween 2010.jpg
Photo by Corey Woodruff.

Passion Pit.jpg
Photo by Corey Woodruff.

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