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Interview: Photographer Rob Blackham On Preparing For a Photoshoot

13 Feb 2019

This post was written more than two years ago. The content or information below may no longer be accurate.

Photographer, Rob Blackham, recently came down to ACM Guildford for a Metropolis Blue / Discovery and Development photoshoot. With ACM London student Sophie McCarthy even getting to assist Rob, students learned a lot from the insightful experience. We caught up with Rob to get some great tips on preparing for a photoshoot…

Give us a round up of your career as a photographer?

“I came to Music & Portrait Photography from the rather unusual route of being a signed rock musician and then a producer…I had originally studied photography at Birmingham when it was all 35mm film!
Coming from a music background definitely informs my work as I’ve been where my subjects have been!”

Any highlights of photographing bands / artists over the years?

“Highlights of my photography life so far have got to be working George Ezra – who I’ve been lucky to collaborate with a number of times (even singing on a few tracks).

Eric Clapton , Sir Van Morrison, Sir Tom Jones were all good sports and total legends…Temperance Movement, Blackberry Smoke and RATBOY are always great fun to shoot too!”

How important is it for bands to have good quality high res images?

“The importance of having a GREAT band/artist photograph can not be understated…we all see thousands of images a day scrolling through our various news feeds…a truly cool and striking photograph can make you STAND OUT from the crowd”

What’s your advice to ACM students on preparing for a photoshoot for the first time?

“When you’re preparing for your shoot do some research…look at your target market, find some visual reference points – images you like …this could be from the music press or even images from film or TV…make a MOODBOARD to communicate your ideas to the photographer/each other …apps like Pinterest really useful for this.”

You recently did some promo shots for ACM’s in-house label Metropolis Blue, how important are opportunities like that for students before they enter the real-world?

“You really have to embrace any and every opportunity before entering the industry “for real”….there are all sorts of extra skills here at ACM that you can pick up along the way…look out for these and grab them when you can!”

One of our students had the opportunity to be your assistant during the session, what’s your advice to other students who are interested in getting involved in photography?

“Sophie from Clapham Campus acted as my assistant during the recent shoot…helping with lights, changing lenses…she did great. To any other students interested in following a career in music photography I would say GET OUT THERE…go to shows, meet bands, do your homework…it’s not about gear, it’s about ACCESS…”

What can we expect from the photos of the session?

“We got some great images from the Metropolis Blue shoot…clean, cool and commercial and they will be going live very soon so STAY TUNED.”

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