It was an exciting day to day for me, well yesterday for that matter. Rolling Stone contacted me about using an image for their upcoming article about Hollywood Vampires. Today it was published, very happy to say, and the story is below. As well as my story from the shoot.
Jon JJ and I are standing in front of a hotel room door in midtown whispering with excitement waiting for our chance to meet two legends of Rock. This was an interview for A-sides with Jon Chattman. At this point we have shot and interviewed some pretty amazing musicians, but this one was special. Alice Cooper and Joe Perry were promoting a new project paying tribute to musician friends they lost at a young age. I had just watched 'Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon' and was up-to-date on the history of Alice. Joe was the icing on the cake- a legend in his own right- crafting some of the worlds most famous guitar riffs. We weren't quite sure whether Johnny Depp would be there to complete the line up of The Hollywood Vampires.
The door creaked open and the PR person led us into the room. Alice's voice was instantly familiar. Around the corner, on a couch the two rockers were dressed all in black finishing up a previous interview. We were told we had 20 minutes, which is barely enough time to stop ogling, so I put my bag down at their feet and poured out my camera equipment. After fumbling my flash and camera together, I got on my knees (I figured the "we're not worthy!" pose would be too much.) and timidly asked to take a picture. Alice was in the middle of a story about Hendrix directly to Joe. They looked over, I snapped a burst of pictures and they went right back to the conversation. "Shit!", I said to myself, "they look bored" looking at the back of the camera. I had been talking to my friend and fellow photog Gavin Thomas about some of the famous people he's shot, and he told me that I should bring props. Luckily I packed my Mamiya C33; a camera from the 70's of which many pictures of these two were taken with! Alice's eyes lit up and Joe went "woah!". I handed the camera to Alice and he immediately made a face and mimed photographing me. I knew I had a great shot. The interview went smashingly, you can find it here.
I used to be so concerned about lighting and camera technique. It plagued me going into shoots; i would research for hours. And, not until recently, Ive come to realize that interaction with the subject is 80% of the work to make an interesting shot. No matter who or what your subject is THAT is the focus.......and should be in focus.