FAVORITE LIVE PHOTOS OF 2018

Like the rest of 2018, this took me FOREVER to get together and get posted. I swear, my resolution for 2019 is to stop procrastinating so much.

ANYWAY, here are some of my favorite photos from 2018. This year was full of ups and downs. There were a few months were I barely shot any shows, and when I did, I wasn’t happy with a lot of my photos. This year was filled with learning experiences and challenges, and I’m happy that I persevered through it, because I feel like I came out stronger in the end and ended up creating some of my favorite photos to date.

In 2019, I really hope to mix things up and step out of my comfort zone more often. That being said, if there’s anything you want to see from me, let me know! I’d love to do some tutorials or how-to blogs, but I’m not sure where to start.

Until then, here are some of my favorite shots from 2018:

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Don Broco @ Vans Warped Tour, 7/1/18

This is one of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken. Hands down. I absolutely adore Don Broco, so of course I felt like I needed to shoot their whole set at Warped Tour, not just the first 3 songs. After the first 3 were up, I made my way into the crowd, waiting for the perfect moment. Naturally, I was stoked when half the band got in the crowd during their final song, and even more excited when I threw my camera up and got this eye contact from Simon while he was sitting on someone’s shoulders. I’m really happy with all of my photos from their set, but this one takes the cake.

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The Spill Canvas @ Summit, 6/2/18

Sooo, this was one hell of a day. Not only was this my birthday, but I also started a new job this day and ended up shooting Emo Nite the same night. Needless to say, I was exhausted by the time I took this photo, but I’m so happy with how it turned out. Just an intimate little moment of Nick on stage in front of a sold-out crowd.

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Pale Waves @ Larimer Lounge, 4/8/18

Larimer Lounge is one of my favorite venues in Denver, but god is it hard to photograph. Most of the time, lights at Larimer Lounge are dim and difficult to photograph, and if the show is sold out, it’s impossible to find a good spot to shoot from unless you show up early to get right up front. If you’re like me and you’re only 5’3”, it makes things even harder. This show was no different. It was sold the heck out and I had to shove my way into the crowd to get a decent vantage point and still ended up shooting primarily with my 70-200. This photo in particular was shot at ISO 8000 / 1/200 / f 2.8 and I’m still astounded that it turned out as crisp and clean as it did.

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Thirty Seconds To Mars @ Fiddler’s Green, 7/15/18

I have been dying to photograph Thirty Seconds To Mars and finally got the chance to this year. This show was pretty stressful until they finally got on stage, though. I had to rush straight from work to the venue and it was pouring rain all day long until minutes before they went on. With the catwalk, photographers were limited to shooting from one side or the other, too, and I was really worried I wasn’t going to get the shots I wanted. Then, Jared pulled this guy on stage to play guitar for a song and he ended up proposing to his girlfriend right in front of me. I’m super excited that I caught this moment and the look on Jared/the girl’s face.

Billie Eilish @ The Bluebird, 4/6/18

This show was an interesting one, too. It was freezing outside and it took forever to get in the venue, and by the time I did, there was really not a single good spot to shoot from. The Bluebird doesn’t have a barricade and normally, they allow photographer to shoot from stairs on the sides of the stage, but they didn’t for this show, which was sold out and jam-packed. I ended up making friends with a mom who let me stand in front of her to get the shots I needed for the first 3 songs and can confidently say that I definitely wouldn’t have caught this moment without her. So thanks, nice mom, wherever you are!

Imagine Dragons @ Red Rocks, 7/16/18

This show was soooo perfect. Lights were gorgeous and Imagine Dragons are always super fun to photograph. It was challenging simply because there were so many photographers, but I walked away with a lot of shots that I liked. I especially love this one because of the look on Dan’s face and the vibrant colors.

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Architects @ Summit, 3/11/18

I had been dying to shoot Architects for a while and this show definitely didn’t disappoint. I had a hard time choosing a favorite from this show, but settled on this one because it seemed like a quiet moment in an otherwise explosive set.

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Cashmere Cat @ The Ogden, 2/6/18

This was such a challenging show to shoot. As I’ve previously mentioned, I’m short and Cashmere Cat’s setup was so tall that shooting from the barricade was pretty much pointless. That, coupled with really moody stage lights left me with not a whole lot to work with. Then somehow, this shot happened in the middle of the show.

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MØ @ The Ogden, 2/6/18

I had absolutely no idea what to expect when I went into shooting MØ, so I was ecstatic when she ended up being one of the most exciting people I’ve ever shot. Anytime an artist gets eye level with you while you’re shooting, it makes for a cool photo, so for her to kneel and lay down on the stage in front of me multiple times during her set was a total dream.

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Our Last Night @ The Bluebird, 3/14/18

This shot was so unexpected. I was done shooting for the night and hanging at the back of the venue with my friends when the bassist of Our Last Night decided to crowd surf to the bar to take a shot, and I pulled my camera out and composed this shot within seconds. I was definitely shooting blind and just had the ISO cranked up because I knew the venue was dark, so I was super excited when I looked at my camera and saw this shot.

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Silverstein @ Summit, 1/26/18

I really love this photo, because after years of shooting Silverstein shows, I finally have a photo of Shane that I’m happy with. For some reason, he has always been hard for me to photograph, and this moment just presented itself perfectly. Also, the lights are super pretty.

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Stick To Your Guns @ Summit, 3/11/18

I mean, who doesn’t love a good jump shot? I think it’s kind of cheating because I’ve shot STYG so many times and know what to expect during their set, but I’m still really happy when I walk away with shots like this.

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Tonight Alive @ Summit, 1/26/18

Tonight Alive are just a fun band to shoot. Jenna is an incredible performer and I swear she knows how to pose for the cameras during the first 3 songs to ensure that we get good shots. This one was definitely easy, but a lot of fun, and I loooove the colors in this.

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FEVER 333 @ The Black Sheep, 5/26/18

This was my first time shooting FEVER 333 and I knew to expect chaos, but I was still super excited when Jason and Aric decided to get in the crowd and finish their last song on the floor. This set was insane from start to finish and reminded me why I love concert photography. The energy, the emotion and the message of their set was amazing.

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Nightlove @ The Gothic, 9/7/18

I just really love shooting Nightlove and this show was so perfect. There was SO MUCH FOG (thanks, Weston), but rather than making it hard to shoot, it made for really dramatic, dynamic photos.

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Pale Waves @ The Bluebird, 11/16/18

God, I love shooting Pale Waves, but I feel like each show is more challenging than the last. While I had more room to work with at this show than I did at their earlier show this year at Larimer Lounge, it was still a huge challenge because the lights were just SO. DIM. I’m all for mood lighting, but this one was definitely challenging. However, I found a good spot to perch up at and managed to catch this cool little moment during their set.

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Amber Mark @ The Marquis, 5/25/18

Amber Mark was an absolute DREAM to photograph. This show honestly felt a little too easy because the lights were perfect and she was so fun to photograph, but I’m still really happy with this image and the emotion on her face.

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The Menzingers @ The Bluebird, 11/10/18

I love photographing The Menzingers, but I’m almost never happy with my photos from their shows, so it only makes sense that I ended up getting my favorite photos of them at one of my least favorite venues to shoot. I think the energy of the crowd really makes these photos, and I’m so happy I caught this moment in particular. (Definitely broke the “first 3” rule for this one, but sometimes you gotta take a risk, right?)

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Years and Years @ The Ogden, 10/22/18

I had been dying to photograph Years and Years, and this show was everything I wanted and more. Beautiful lights, fun choreography and a super photogenic frontman are the perfect combination for good photos. It was really hard choosing a favorite from this show as well, but I ultimately ended up choosing this one because of the emotion on his face.

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Underoath @ The Ogden, 11/23/18

This show was SO much fun. Underoath had an incredible production and are always a dream to shoot. The only challenge was the amount of photographers that were shooting, which made it hard to get a good spot or good angle. This moment happened during their 3rd song, and I was lucky enough to have the perfect vantage point to capture it.

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Tory Lanez @ Summit, 6/18/18

This shot has been a long time in the making. The last time I shot Tory Lanez, I was really disappointed that I didn’t get any photos of him in the crowd and I was determined to make up for it at this show, not knowing if he’d even get in the crowd this time around. I shot the first 3 songs and honestly was kind of disappointed with my photos. They weren’t bad by any means, but I knew I could do better. So, I went up in the balcony and scoped out a good spot, waiting for my moment. Shortly after I found a good spot, he climbed on top of the crowd and cell phone lights began illuminating the entire venue. It was insane. I took a TON of shots, hoping I got the perfect one, and once I was done shooting, started flipping through my photos until I got to this one and nearly lost my mind. I love the eye contact, the soft ambient light and the energy of the photo so much. It’s definitely one of my favorite photos I’ve ever taken. (Also, this photo is now printed just about as tall as me and hanging on the wall at Summit. I just about cried when I first saw it.)

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Dance Gavin Dance @ The Gothic, 6/18/18

Sooo, immediately after taking the above Tory Lanez photo, I threw all of my gear in my car and hauled ass across town to the Dance Gavin Dance show at The Gothic, hoping I wasn’t too late to shoot them. By the time I got there, they were playing their last few songs, and my friend Blake (bless his soul) threw me his laminate so I could run down and get a couple of shots. The venue was SO disgustingly hot that my glasses (and my lens) immediately fogged up and I was basically shooting blind. I honestly don’t even know how I ended up with this photo, but I adore it.

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Underoath @ The Ogden, 11/23/18

Oh hey, another Underoath photo! I had a hard time choosing a favorite from the two nights that I shot them, so this one made the cut, too. This was taken after the first 3 songs during the “drowning in my sleep” part of “It’s Dangerous Business Walking Out Your Front Door”. I ran down the stairs to grab this photo at the last second and I’m so glad I made it in time. (I should also probably start planning out my shots better haha).

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YUNGBLUD @ Larimer Lounge, 10/3/18

Alright. Let me tell you a little story about this photo.

I have been DYING to shoot YUNGBLUD since I started listening to him a while ago, and was super bummed when he announced that he’d be jumping on Warped Tour… literally the day after the Denver date. All year, I watched all of my photographer friends in other states get killer shots of him and I was low key really jealous because I hadn’t had the chance to shoot him yet, so when he announced a show in Denver, I was really excited, even more so when I saw that it was at Larimer Lounge. I rarely use flash at Larimer Lounge because I feel like an ass disrupting the ambience of a show with it, but I knew that if I could get away with it at any show, it would be this one, and I knew going into it that I really wanted to get some old school shutter drag photos.

The hard part was, I had never shot YUNGBLUD before, didn't know what to expect, and as I mentioned above, Larimer Lounge is a difficult shoot unless you camp out and get the perfect spot up front. I ended up getting to this show right around doors and there was already a huge line outside, so getting up front at the start of the show was out of the question, so I made friends with some very nice girls in front of me who let me squeeze in front of them for a few songs, and somehow, this insane photo was born. Honestly this was the exact shot I went into this show hoping for and I’m so freaking proud of myself for getting it. Shit like this is why I’m still shooting shows and I really hope there’s more of it in 2019.