I haven’t posted in a little while, sorry about that. I went off to Denver, I just want to forget that, then last weekend was Punk Rock Bowling. After my initial hopes were dashed on the rocks, things worked out better than I could have hoped for. I was able to somehow manage a photo pass all three days of the festival, I’m sure I have more than one person to thank for that. Still working on getting the photos up here on the site, some are already up on Facebook. So for right now I am getting concert photos and not the portraits I am looking for, but that will come with time.
So I am thinking Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock might end up being more that just the book I initially envisioned. Moving forward the format of the site will be changing slightly and there will be much more visual content. Pictures make everyone happy and look for some video too. I want to keep the site clean and simple, so for now just shuffling some sections and pages around.
The Indiegogo campaign has so far not worked out the way I hoped it would so I need to come up with some other funding ideas.
Last night after I was able to reflect on things I realized that I have a lot to learn. I knew going into Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock that there was a lot about this project that I had no idea about and as it turns out dealing with people was one of them. In my haste to get things moving as quickly as possible I didn’t take the time to really introduce myself and let people become comfortable with me before I started telling people what I wanted from them. I now realize that I may have come off as pushy and demanding, I assure everyone that it was not my intention to be that way. Truthfully I can’t do this book on my own, While I may be spearheading this project I need more help than I could have ever imagined. I have convinced myself that I am doing something that no one has ever done before and that might be true or it might not be. I obviously need help from bands and musicians, but I also need the help of managers, pr people, record labels and promoters among others. I need to forge lasting and trusting relationships with everyone and I have to show them that their trust in in me is warranted and that I have something to offer them in return for the help I am asking for. I can’t make Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock a reality without the support and endorsement of the project by bands, record labels and promoters. I am very grateful for all the help and advice I have received so far and I will put it to good use.
To say I am frustrated would be an understatement. I have no problem admitting that there were a handful of tears. I have been working so hard for a couple of months now and it all came crashing down. The Punk Rock Bowling and Music Festival seemed like the perfect opportunity to get a lot of photos of bands in a short amount of time. I put in a request for a photo pass a month ago and until this morning had not heard anything back. I figured that while I was waiting I would contact all the bands performing at the festival and ask specifically about them being ok with me photographing backstage. Some of the bands were very excited about Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock, some didn’t mind at all, no one really had any issue at all with me being backstage with a camera. I wasn’t asking for interviews, or posed photo shoots. I made it clear I just wanted to be around and that I would stay out of the way.
There is a big disconnect between what bands believe they have control of and what the festival believes they have control of. Bands say they have no control over backstage access, but at the same time the festival says I have to clear it with the bands because it is not up to them. No one is on the same page as far as who has the power over access. I was told last night that if even one band said no then I could not have access. When I pointed out that they had all said yes, the story changed, it was now the policy that no cameras were allowed backstage.
To be honest, I don’t think a lot of people even read my emails or look at my website or Facebook page to see what it is that I am really doing. What I am doing will not take any time from people, I will not be in the way, and they don’t need to do anything that they wouldn’t already be doing. What takes no effort from the people I am contacting will be a lot of work for me, but I don’t mind, I love what I am trying to do and I love the cause that it will benefit.
So what this boils down to is that if I was told a month ago that they would never grant me access to photograph bands at Punk Rock Bowling, I would not have spent all the time I did contacting all the bands and making the arrangements that I did. What a waste of time and energy.
I haven’t said much here lately, so it’s about time I did. There are a couple of big shows coming up that I am going to be at. First up for me is show in Denver this coming Monday, The Dwarves and Turbonegro. Next week for memorial day weekend will be the Punk Rock Bowling & Music Festival in Las Vegas. I have been working very hard contacting all the bands performing at Punk Rock Bowling and have had great success in hearing back from most of them. As you know, my goal with Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock has been to include mostly candid photos and not as many concert photos. Getting permission from bands to shoot backstage at concerts and festivals is key to having the opportunity to get the shots that I want and to that end I have been able to do that quite successfully with Punk Rock Bowling. There are 27 bands performing at the festival and I have been able to get the ok from 24 of them so far.
My challenge moving forward will be getting the opportunity to photograph bands in non-concert situations, like rehearsals, recording sessions, and as many other settings as possible. I also have a dilemma when it comes to festivals that aren’t necessarily Punk Rock in nature, but include many Punk acts among other acts, gaining access to these events to just shoot the bands I want to has so far proved impossible. In order to gain access to events I need people to understand and support what I am trying to do with Portraits In The Key Of Punk Rock. I think I should expand on the last issues in a larger post, until then, spread the word about the website and the Indiegogo campaign. Thank you.
I have updated the Indiegogo page with a video. You can also view is below.
You gotta spend money to make money, I think someone said that once. I’m giving a Facebook ad a try, nothing fancy mind you, I did try to optimize for audience and I promoted a status that mentioned my charity partner Little Kids Rock and had a link to the Indiegogo campaign. So far so good, I am seeing an upswing in traffic and right now traffic is a good thing because that means the word is getting out. I just need everyone to share and share and share some more. Thank you everyone.
Also, if you get the chance to see HB Surround Sound, run don’t walk.
I have been struggling with this one since the beginning, do I reveal who has said yes to being in the book? Do I reveal who I’ve actually photographed for the book? I want the project to have merit of it’s own without relying on who you will see, to get peoples interest. I would have no problem if a band or musician believed felt so strongly about the project that they themselves came out publicly supporting it. I am not comfortable asking for endorsements from musicians though, but I do want publicity. I have become wedged between a rock and a hard place. I have had contact with numerous bands, but saying this gives you no information as to who and how well they are known. I can only say “trust me” so much. Part of me wants it all to be a surprise until the final book is off to print and part of me is scared that if I reveal people along the way they will get upset and pull their support.
This man has an endless amount of energy, one of the highest energy shows I have ever seen.
This show was on Sunday, April 21 at Pub Rock in Scottsdale Arizona, and surprisingly not a packed house. The crowd was a good mix of young and old and even a few people that had no idea who Jello Biafra was. I was more than a little surprised by this fact. Anyways I will let the slideshow below do the talking and may even upload the images to Facebook. Still going through the images from That Damn Show from the day before, look for those tomorrow.