Jordan Corey has photographed some of the biggest names in contemporary music, including Lady Gaga, Katy Perry Jay-Z, the Jonas Brothers, Usher, and many more. And, unlike most of us she’s not snapping away with her iPhone. At least not most of the time. She shoots from that special area of the venue reserved for official photographers. Her work has been featured on Rollingstone.com and she’s created a Blurb book of her concert photography called No Flash.
Blurb: First of all, how do you get a photo pass to a show?
Jordan: Luckily, I come by photo passes relatively easily. I work at two prominent radio stations in Boston (KISS 108 and JAM’N 94.5) for people who understand that photography is a very serious passion of mine. Whenever a show comes to town we jump at the chance to get involved, and fortunately a lot of the time, that means I get to go to these shows and photograph some of the biggest names in entertainment.
Blurb: Who’s been your favorite musician to photograph?
Jordan: Usher on his OMG Tour. The lighting was great, bright and colorful, and he’s a really passionate performer. The shot in the book of him is probably my favorite ever taken. Although, I do have a soft spot for Lady Gaga considering one particular shot of her (also in the book) landed me a photo credit on rollingstone.com.
Blurb: Let’s talk gear: What do you shoot with?
Jordan: I still shoot with the very first camera I ever purchased which is a Canon XTi. It’s old but it’s my baby and I trust it. The time to upgrade is certainly here though! It’ll be a Canon either way. The people standing next to me shooting for newspapers and such have really professional equipment and it’s very intimidating but I find it’s all how you execute and I do my best with what I have.
Blurb: Let’s talk technique: How do you get such sharp images in a fast-moving, low-light environment?
Jordan: I try to be as calm as possible. When I first started the adrenaline would get to me — you only have the first few songs to nail your shot — and I’d be just flipping every switch I could get my thumbs on. Now, I basically set my shutter speed quick enough to catch the artist running around the stage with as little blur as possible, and then set everything else accordingly. Most importantly, I try to ask a lot of questions to the people who’ve seen the tour before (managers, etc…) to get a feel for the lighting beforehand.
Blurb: Any thoughts on all those camera phones and pocketable point-and-shoot cameras at concerts?
Jordan: I was always that kid sneaking my point-and-shoot into any concert I went to. I can’t imagine being at a show without a camera or my iPhone now. I think a lot of concertgoers don’t get to really enjoy a show when they’re stuck behind their cameras though. Being able to legitimately shoot at these events allows me to capture a still memory of being there and then three songs later I’m back in the crowd enjoying the concert atmosphere as it’s meant to be experienced. But I’d never want to be without some kind of camera at a concert, no question.