Lights dim, the crowd yells, music surges from monitors and on-stage amps.
For music fanatics, a live show can be the most exciting and comforting experience. For photographers, a live show experience can be something a bit different. Once the eye meets the viewfinder, everything changes. The sound muffles, that kid pushing you into the edge of the stage disappears, it’s just you, the lights and the frame.
Over 2015, Lo-Pie built a small team of photographers that put their passion behind the lens and into hours of editing, all for this inexplicable obsession we have with music.
Thanks to all the photographers that have contributed this year, and here’s to even more shows and beautiful photos in 2016!! – Angela Ratzlaff, Photo Editor
Photographer: Angela Ratzlaff
Fuzz at Burger Boogaloo
I wasn’t officially sent by Lo-Pie to photograph this festival, I actually went with Honey Power to help them out with DJ sets. I ended up bringing my film camera, just for fun. My photos turned out really well so I submitted them for a photo feature! I ended up using a whole roll of black and white film during Fuzz’s performance. It was worth each exposure. During the performance, it was almost as if the electricity coming from Fuzz’s instruments made dirt rise from Mosswood Park’s ground. The energy was rampant, the reverb loud. One of the best shows/moments of 2015, for sure.[Angela's recap of Burger Boogaloo.]
Yonatan Gat at The Smell
As a local music photographer, I share similar struggles with my photo comrades: making a shot of a live band look semi-interesting, telling a story with the limitations of being stuck in a photo pit in front of the stage and photographing ANY band that plays at The Smell. The small venue has poor lighting, probably the worst in L.A. However, when Yonatan Gat performed, they brought three spotlights, one situated next to each musician. They also set up in the middle of The Smell so the audience could surround them. Aside from the unique composition of the band’s set up, the performance was one of the most passion-filled, expressive shows I have ever seen. Such a treat! [Angela's recap of Yonatan Gat at The Smell.]
Photographer: Mikayl Nguyen
Prettiest Eyes at Viva El Ley
It’s hard to pick a best/favorite photo of 2015, but if I had to pick it’d probably be this one. Lo-Pie asked me to cover Viva El Ley, and I expected a typically uneventful night with good music and cool people. Little did I know a middle-aged Asian man would start stripping and partying with the kids during Prettiest Eyes’ set. Cheers to you, unknown concert goer, for being the most punk guy in the room. [Lo-Pie recaps Viva El Ley]
Winter at Non Plus Ultra
Winter was my favorite live show in the early bit of 2015. This picture of Samira being adorable and having so much fun on stage brings back some good memories. Visually, I enjoy the roses popping and the intersection of guitar neck and mic leading directly to her face. Maybe I took better pictures this year, but in terms of fun these shows were my favorite.
Photographer: Jacquie Ray//High Creatives
L.A Witch at Desert Daze
L.A Witch played at such a beautiful time during Desert Daze, I think I’m always going to remember that. Three babes rocking out in the desert during twilight hour, it was magical. [Lo-Pie recaps Desert Daze 2015]
Jeffertitti’s Nile at Everydaze Music
When Jeff announced the end of Jeffertiti’s Nile, it was kind of a big deal. They’ve been one of my faves for years. It was great being able to be there and cover that show, especially at Everydaze Music.
Photographer: Lindsey Mejia
Die Antwoord at Beach Goth IV
I’d already seen Die Antwoord once at Festival Supreme and was super excited upon finding out that I was going to be able to shoot them at Beach Goth this year. I’ll admit when I first heard them, I didn’t know what to think. After seeing them live, however, I became a big fan. They totally blew my mind! It was so much fun to shoot them. They are definitely a favorite of mine. [More Beach Goth photos by Lindsey Mejia]
The Coathangers at Beach Goth IV
It was my first time seeing the Coathangers live, and they turned out to be such a joy to shoot. This shot happened right after their set when I stumbled into the backstage trying to find my way out to shoot the next band. I saw them chillin’ and asked to take a shot of them. They agreed and were super sweet about it! They even gave me hugs after. I just loved that sweet little moment and also how the picture turned out: floral wallpaper, them in their creepy Halloween makeup and surrounded by happy/indifferent people just hanging out.
Photographer: Brennan Munoz
Feels at Lolipalooza II
Feels brought it in 2015. From acoustic shows with Ty Segall to 105-degree desert festivals, this band has undoubtedly put on some of the best shows of the year.
Mac Demarco at Beach Goth IV
I saw Mac Demarco perform for the first time, and I was not disappointed. It didn’t hurt that I got to photograph him from the pit, thanks to the awesome people over at Lo-Pie! Finally got to see what all these teenage Tumblr girls are so crazy about.