I've been thinking about the future of this website for some time now, in the most casual sense. For the last 15 years, I've been the sole author of the 1,200+ posts on this site. It's been an amazing run and one that has given me more than I could have ever dreamed of. But now it's time to look to the future. And one that involves you.
ishootshows — The Past
I registered the domain “ishootshows.com” in 2006, about six months after I photographed my first concert. I wanted a short, easy to remember phrase that I could shout over the noise of a show when fans asked me where they could see the images. It was another year before I made my first post in 2007.
While it started as a place to share my work, this blog quickly became a platform where I could share what I learned about music photography along the way. I began posting tips and tutorials on how I approached music photography. The lenses I used, the settings that worked for me, dealing red lighting, and so forth.
I've said it before, but I feel like I owe a career to this blog. I don't feel like it's too much of an exaggeration — almost every big break I ever got was from someone Googling “music photographer” or “concert photographer” and finding this site, from my first assignment for Rolling Stone to commercial jobs for brands like Red Bull to dream gigs like photographing the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.
ishootshows — The Future
Sitting down to think about the core of what this website has been the last 15 years, as well as what it can be, I'm struck by three main values that I see as the future of ishootshows: sharing knowledge, providing inspiration and building community.
On the basis of the pillars of knowledge, inspiration and community, there seem like endless avenues for fulfilling them. But here are a few ideas — some of which this blog has already done and will continue to do, and others which are entirely new and exciting ideas.
Pricing & negotiation
Licensing & contracts
Image spotlights (one perfect shot)
I want your help
I feel the next logical extension is turning ishootshows.com into something not only for the music photography community, but by the music photography community. Here's where I need your help.
I feel to achieve this next life of this site, I need help to make it happen. As an individual, my time and energy are limited — and perhaps most importantly, so are my experiences and my networks. I envision ishootshows.com as a publication for photographers showcasing the depth and talent and knowledge of a community that's far bigger than what any individual can access.
Here's where you come in.
What do you want to see?
Are these categories for features what would be valuable to you or the community? What's missing that would be beneficial? I want this site to be a publication to celebrate what you love, share the knowledge that you need and to lift up those who deserve it.
Seeking editors and contributors
Simply put, I'm looking for people who want to join me in building this vision. I'm imagining a small team of editors and contributors who can help to create new content, share their expertise, a passion for networking and showcasing talent, and generally celebrating this shared passion of music photography.
Photo editors curating and highlighting talent
Writers sharing their technical knowledge, how-to and approach
Editors to coordinate features, content and do outreach
Community engagement roles for social, mentoring coordination, etc.
Perhaps there are editors who own different “columns” or features: interviews, “behind the image stories,” up and coming photographer spotlights, and so forth.
I'd be honored if anyone would want to join me in that journey. If this is you, I'd love to hear from you. If you're interested in working on ishootshows.com with me, please fill out the interest check form below.