Concert photography is hard.
In ideal scenarios, photographers are afforded waves of even, natural light and relatively still subjects to ensure a stable shutter speed and aperture small enough for a fully-focused image. In the arena of live music, that just doesn’t happen. Shutter bugs grapple with window-less, claustrophobic hellholes that smell like crystalized Bud Light, forced to wriggle in a sea of bodies to get a glimpse of a musician hiding behind a maze of mic stands, wires and guitars. In bigger venues, cameras are forced to decode a blitz of seizure-inducing, cresting neon ejaculations, in the hopes of snagging one image that may or may not portray the shape of a person performing music. And who the hell began letting 17-year-olds holding iPhones into the photo pit? Music industry resolution for 2017: stop doing that.
It’s both an artistic and technical miracle that any photo from a concert looks OK, let alone good. So Paste salutes all of our photographers for the sterling images above, which display an array of style, patience and post-production savantry.