“Oh, Crap! This is Concert Photography?!”

Concert Photography Pros and Cons

Concert Photography Pros and ConsSo you want to be a Concert Photographer. You went out and bought a nice camera. Built a portfolio. Made some contacts. Got that first photo pass. You get to the venue and pick up your pass. The adrenaline surges and you’re thinking “This is great!”, as you walk through the crowd carrying your big camera with press credentials swinging around your neck. Someone directs you to the photo pit and as you are walking in your sense of self-importance swells, and your ego inflates to the size of one of the beach balls that are being tossed about by the fans. You turn to face the stage to plan your attack and then BAM!! The first cup of beer comes flying your way and drenches the back of your shirt and camera bag. You mouth the words “Oh, Crap!” as the fan apologizes profusely.

Welcome to the world of Concert Photography. While it may appear to be glamorous, it can also have its share of negatives. Photographing a show can be fun. It definitely has it’s perks, but you have to be prepared for the unexpected and required work post-show. Below is a list of some of the Pros and Cons I have experienced during my concert photography career.


  • Developing relationships with bands, PR reps, venue employees, and more
  • Use of professional photo equipment in venues
  • Getting free access to shows
  • Being introduced to different types of music and new bands
  • Seeing your photos on a band’s social media page or promotional materials
  • Access to different areas of the venue including the photo pit, VIP areas, and backstage
  • Attending a lot of shows


  • Arriving at a show and waiting outside for two hours to get press credentials
  • Fans spilling beer on you and your equipment
  • Crowd surfers landing on top of you
  • Getting stepped on in the photo pit
  • Being stuck in the pit while needing to use the restroom
  • Getting home at 2 a.m. and having to get up at 6:30 a.m. to go to work
  • Spending hours or days editing photos and writing the review

Photographing concerts can be a challenge.  However, if you put in the effort, then these challenges will end up making you a better photographer in the long run. For those that love live music and the concert experience, the Pros definitely outweigh the cons.

Post and photos by Scott Raymer (Website | Instagram | Facebook)

How have your concert experiences been? Comment below.


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