7-7-7

THREE DAY THRESHOLD - MIDDLE EAST DOWNSTAIRS - JULY 7, 2007

It sure is great getting back to these flashback posts!

July 7th 2007 was an extremely busy day for wedding photographers everywhere. 7-7-7 was just too good a date to pass up for all that souvenir wedding swag. But I wasn't really photographing weddings professionally yet. So I found myself at a familiar stomping ground photographing an even more familiar band: Three Day Threshold led by my former boss in Northeastern's mail room Kier Byrnes. While I only took a few "good" photos, this certainly will not be the last you see of TDT!

To The Masquerade: An Introduction

TO THE MASQUERADE - AFTERHOURS @ NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY - JUNE 21, 2007

Blog readers, meet To The Masquerade: by far the constant of my early photography career. It was through TTM that I could always gauge how I was progressing as a photographer - both artistically and professionally. From their first shows where I was being paid by just being on the list and maybe a beer after the show, to a couple years later where I was their personal photographer paid in actual money for live shows, album/promo artwork, and more...

But I'm getting ahead of myself. 

This chapter of my photographic history all started on a cloudy Thursday night halfway through 2007 at a small Northeastern campus club called Afterhours. I was working at a local camera store and had "borrowed" Tokina's new 11-16mm f/2.8 for the night. It was my first foray into ultra-wide photography and truthfully I had no idea what I was doing! I also borrowed Canon's iconic 70-200mm f/2.8 IS (the "White Whale") but predominately explored life in about 150º.

The results?: Lots of slow(er than I should have been hand holding) shutter, lots of questionable compositions, but an admittedly fun show and a pretty cool impromptu band shoot after the show as a bonus. It can only get better from here right?

 Enjoy the first of what will be at least a 12-part series in the much too short lived reign of To The Masquerade.

Jaded at Bill's Bar

FLASHBACK TO:

BILL'S BAR - BOSTON, MA - DECEMBER 2007

Here we are at Bill's Bar again. This time with rock band Jaded, led by über-talented lead guitarist, and my college classmate Britt Lightning

Blue Hills Music Clubhouse

FLASHBACK TO:

DORCHESTER -  (2007)

The best job I've ever had was in college. I wish I had known that back then! It was my first (and only) co-op job while I was at Northeastern University. I was the supervisor for a brand new after school music program starting in Lawrence, MA called the Lawrence Music Clubhouse. Basically I was paid to play music with kids ages 8-18 after school 3-4 days a week. It was fantastic! But as all good things must come to an end, I moved on after my 6-month internship and went back to school. I did, however, stay in close contact with the clubhouse's founder Gary Eichhorn. A few year later, when I heard there were other clubhouses opening I jumped at the chance to help.

The gallery below features some of my favorite images from a day at the Blue Hills Music Clubhouse in Dorchester. I'm happy to report that there are now TWELVE music clubhouses throughout Massachusetts! Providing opportunities for children to connect with and experience music is something I'm extremely passionate about. For more information check out their website (www.musicandyouth.org)...you might see some familiar photos.

T.T. The Bear's Place

By mid-Summer 2007 I was consistently bringing my camera to concerts around the area. It was at these shows where I first learned that I really didn't like having to use a flash (I still don't). Perhaps that's where my "snobbery" for fast (>ƒ/2.8) lenses comes from. Quite simply I've always preferred capturing the ambient light of a moment, versus providing my own - rather unnatural - light. By the end of the Summer I would purchase my first Gary Fong Lightsphere, which helped with this plight immensely and aided in my eventual embrace of flash photography in both dimly lit environments as well as for fill light. But I'm getting ahead of myself...

This particular gallery is from a quaint little bar and nightclub in Cambridge, MA called T.T. The Bear's Place. I spent a good chunk of my childhood attending shows at either T.T.'s or The Middle East Nightclub (on the same block) as it was only a short walk (or more often even shorter bike ride) from where I grew up. This particular bill was extra special as it featured native Cantabrigian Natti Vogel opening for my incredibly talented step-sister Anna Vogelzang and her band. 

Running Rampant with a Rented Camera

FLASHBACK TO:

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - BILL'S BAR, LANDSDOWNE STREET (2006)

With my first actual photography class under my belt I discovered a new level of passion for photography I never knew existed. Perhaps more importantly I had made friends with the folks in the Northeastern photography lab - the ones who rented out equipment to photo students. It soon became a regular occurrence for me to rent out a Nikon D70s and parade around with it like a tourist visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

My most frequent destinations were the bars and nightclubs around the Boston area that hosted the area's music scene. I routinely carried my little point-and-shoot Canon, but I'll never forget the very first time I rented out a DSLR. There was a show later that night at Bill's Bar on Landsdowne Street featuring a band that my friends were in called Alpha Juliet. Beyond excited, I spent their entire set snapping pics right in front of the stage. In hindsight I may have even used a pop-up flash... (whoops!) You live, you learn...

p.s. man oh man have digital sensors come a long way. Despite the noise, all of these images were shot at ISO 400! Yikes!

My First PAID Photo Shoot!

FLASHBACK TO:

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - MISSION HILL (2006)

Fast forward now to early 2006. I had been outgrowing my little point-and-shoot Canon for quite awhile now, but had been supplementing my photographic yearning with a hand-me-down Canon Rebel X film camera. It was by far the most "advanced" film camera in my analog photography class I was in at Northeastern University. That said, it lacked the romance of an analog film camera. While my love of photography was growing exponentially I was still a Music major and frequently hanging out with musicians in class, at gigs, and the like. Word of my photographic passion began to spread and it wasn't too far into Spring semester of my Junior year that I was approached by a friend of mine to take promo photos of his band. How exciting! Better yet, he was going to pay me for my time and effort! I spent the afternoon scoping out a location for our shoot. I finally stumbled upon The Mission Church on Tremont Street in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston. There was outdoor space around the exterior of the basilica that I thought was really unique, and the band agreed. Here are some film scans from the shoot: