Allan Hayslip Photography: Blog en-us (C) V. Allan Hayslip [email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:43:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:43:00 GMT Allan Hayslip Photography: Blog 100 120 Happy War On Xmas! Join me in my War On Xmas 2014. Anything you purchase thru my portfolio site is 10% off (products and shipping) thru December 25, 2014. Just use the coupon code:


Not everything is visible on the site, so if there's a picture you know you want, but can't find it, just message me and I'll give you a link to the appropriate gallery/galleries.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) Alan Hayslip Allan Hayslip Allen Hayslip Amber DeVille Athena Fatale Burlesque Clint Phillips Corey Howe Courtney Crave Dead Flowers Donna Hood Double Wide Double-Wide Dragabilly Ginger Valentine Gorehounds Halloween Holiday Discount Howard Kelley Jeff Dayton Jello Biafra Jessabelle Thunder Labretta Lee Harvey's Missy Lisa Music Photography Olivia Bellafontaine Performance Portraits Performance Portraiture Plissken Ruby Revue Taylor Heaton Tease If You Please Three LInks Trees V. Allan Hayslip War On Christmas War On Xmas World/Inferno Friendship Society Tue, 02 Dec 2014 18:29:20 GMT
they posted a profile of me at the Dallas Observer for this music photog thing The profile of yours truly as a finalist among the "12 Best Dallas Music Photographers" went live at the Dallas Observer's DC9 At Night music blog today. I apologize in advance for the verbosity of the text--apparently I dissociated to a freshman-essay-writing version of me. I waxed so prodigiously grandiloquent that they didn't even post 2 of the photos I submitted or two of the answers to their questions.

For posterity, here are the full answers and the unpublished photos I submitted in response to the questionnaire. Excellent put-yourself-to-sleep reading:


How and where would you like to be credited (website, contact info, portfolio links, etc)

V. Allan Hayslip -



1. If you had to guess at the ballpark number, how many concerts would you say you've photographed?

On my website I think I have about 58 galleries of various shows I've shot since about 2009. There are some other shows during that time which, for a variety of reasons, I haven't yet posted. Also I have some old contact sheets from the mid-90's when I was running around with my mentors Chris Howell and Denny Doran.  We were shooting a lot of street photography, but that included shooting plenty of bands, too. I'm pretty sure there's a Melt show in there somewhere, and there are a couple of pix of the Buck Pets back stage at a Nixons show in the Trees parking lot. I also have a few rolls from the mid-80's when I was in high-school, including a shot of Barry Kooda playing with Yeah Yeah Yeah at the Theater Gallery in roughly 1987, which I think is pretty cool because I get to play with Barry now in his eponymous Combo.


With the exception of the Gorehounds shows, I tend to shoot shows in waves, with long periods in between where I'm editing, procrastinating, or working on other stuff.  The number I blindly pull out of the dark guessing-orifice is maybe 80-120 shows.



2. What makes a great concert photo?

Mwanza Dover on stage at Three Links with his band The Black DotzMwanza Dover on stage at Three Links with his band The Black Dotz

I think there are as many different kinds of 

great concert photos as there are great concert photographers. If there are common denominators, the best photos probably express perspective and energy in a resonant or surprising way.


Perspective can help put the viewer in an desirable or unexpected place at the show. It might put them on sta

ge with the band, or right down in the pit, or even backstage so they can see how the rock'n'roll sausage is made. Perspective can help the viewer imagine they're right there at the show, or that they have a privileged, even idealized position that's even better than the one they might've had in the club.  Perspective can also heighten the drama of the shot, like making the performers look 10 feet tall, or alternately getting up close and intimate so it feels like 

just a single performer and the viewer.


Similarly, a great photo can capture various aspects of the energy of the moment. A powerful movement by a performer, frozen in time, can express a certain tension and feel like it's almost about o burst out of the frame.  Likewise blurred motion of the audience and/or the performers can really show the kinetic aspect of a show. Compositional tools like using negative space, selective focus, or letting a subject burst through (or fall off) an edge of the frame can also communicate to the viewer that the subject is so energetic it simply can't be contained.



3. What's the best thing about live music?

Whether I'm performing in a band or shooting a show, for me the best thing is the collaborative aspect of it, which includes the intimacy of the trust artists share among each other, the trust artists share with the audience, and that the audience reciprocates to the artists.  it's almost completely emotional, and frequently has very little to do with the actual notes being played. My best musical experiences, llke when I perform with my niece Tiger Darrow, are the ones where we trust we're there to support each other in the common goal of playing music that's worth hearing, and we trust that the audience is open and receptive to it. It's not much different when I'm shooting. I need the artists to open up to me, to be vulnerable, and to trust that I'm not there to make them look like idiots so that we can get the most powerful images. I guess that's why I end up being so selective about what I shoot, leaning towards musicians I already know and/or music that I already love. After all, I can't play in every band, so there's shooting is another way to actively participate.



4. What's the strangest thing that has happened to you while photographing live music?

Nothing terribly exotic, scary, or bizarre--at least by my standards--has happened so far, but I'm holding out hope.  Or maybe I should say that nothing unexpectedly strange has happened. It's not unexpectedly strange to find yourself sitting next to a clown in the midst of strapping-on a 3' penis when you're backstage at a fetish event. And yes I took a nice picture of it.

Johnny Tone of Club Wood on stage at Lee Harvey'sJohnny Tone of Club Wood on stage at Lee Harvey's


5.What makes a professional photographer as opposed to an amateur?

I'm not sure the distinction between professional and amateur is as binary or important as it used to seem to be. It seems like it's a continuum these days in almost any artistic discipline. For example, I love to shoot music stuff, but I almost never get paid to do it; so far the actual income in my embryonic photographic career has been mainly from architectural and product shots. But I hope to leverage the Gorehounds images into something like a book project, and I will happily sell prints (music-related or otherwise) to anyone and everyone who asks. Maybe in that sense I guess I'm a professional shooter "on spec." 

Our digital culture has an ever more voracious appetite for content, so there's always something to shoot, and sometimes people will pay for it. On the other hand, for whatever reason many people are coming to believe that photography isn't worth paying much for. Maybe it's the overwhelming volume of clickable imagery out there, or maybe it's the affordability of high quality gear such that many people think that's all they need to be "good enough"--the fact is, for people on a budget and/or whom don't understand what goes into making a really great photograph, "good enough" really is good enough. Either way the effect is that there is a lot of mediocre photography getting paid for, and a lot of amazing photography that doesn't get paid for.



In other words, I have no idea what makes the difference between a professional and an amateur.

6. Pick one of the photos you've submitted and tell us a little about it: Where was it shot, who is featured and (most importantly) how did you capture it? We'd love to hear logistical description or technical breakdowns or whatever else you feel the voters need to know.

There's a close picture of Labretta Suede, the front-woman of (until recently NYC-based) Kiwi band called Labretta Suede & The Motel Six. I'd missed their Dallas gig at Three Links the previous night, so I made a point of shooting them the following night Lola's in Fort Worth. I'd seen them previously in Dallas, and I had made Labretta's acquaintance during previous visits to NYC, so I knew their shows are always worth catching, and worth capturing.


This a example to me of the joy I can have when I apply all the skills and experience I can muster to the best gear I can get, set up the shot, and then fill myself with love and just hope like hell it will come together something like I expect, or at least it might be a happy surprise. 


Shooting in clubs is always tough--even in the best of them the lighting is set up for the audience to experience the show, not for a photographer--so the equipment is always pushed to the edge of it's limits. ISO's are tweaked as high as you dare, but not so high that the image starts to look like a Seurat painting. The aperture is as wide-open as you can get, but of course the razor-thin focal-plane makes it almost impossible for conventional auto-focus to work, especially on a subject that's moving in the dark. Shutter speeds are as slow as you can tolerate--motion blur can be great, but something has to not be blurry--but not so slow that nothing can stay in focus. So I was in a dark room, shooting a gloriously kinetic singer. ISO was at 1250, 85mm lens was at f/1.4, shutter speed at 1/80 of a second. Labretta sweeps by me, probably close enough that I had to back up in order to stay with in the minimum focusing range. I fired about 4 frames, but I didn't look at them. Chimping wasn't going to magically make them good pictures, and that moment wasn't going to happen again.

When I did look at them, there were 4 very similar images with very different focal points. In this image my camera found enough contrast in the light reflecting off of some strands of Labretta's jet-black hair to get a focus-lock. Her lips and just part of her cheek are just peeking into the focal plane. To me, the effect is sexy, energetic and a little abstract. To me, this image represents the perfect combinationof preparation, good equipment, and a heaping serving of dumb luck that can happen in only that combination in only that moment, and that still p

hotography is among the best at capturing.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) 6 Best Black Bonjiovi Chris Club Dallas Denny Doran Dotz Dover Gorehounds Harvey's Howard Howell Kelley Labretta Lee Links Lola's Meet Motel Music Mwanza North Observer Photographers Spyche Suede Texas The Three Wood and in the verbose Thu, 20 Mar 2014 19:28:59 GMT
Dallas Observer Music Photographer Finalists I'm honored to have been nominated by a few people to the Dallas Observer as one of Dallas' current "best" music photographers, and even more honored that I was selected as one of the 12 Finalists. It has been a real treat meeting the other photographers, some of whom I already knew and admired, the remainder of which have been happy--and in some cases inspirational--discoveries.

The finalists include:

They're publishing profiles of each photographer on the Observers' DC9 At Night music blog. I'll edit or repost this entry to include the profiles as they become available.  In the mean time II encourage you to go check out everybody's stuff.

Journalist and Brookhaven College instructor Daniel Rodrigue also invited us for an early-morning panel for some of the photography and/or journalism classes on Monday 3/17, Almost everyone made it, and it was a real opportunity to share some thoughts and learn some stuff. They shared thoughts, and I learned stuff.

Meanwhile I encourage you to also check out some other great shooters who, for whatever reasons, didn't make the list. I can think of a few musician photographers: Barry Kooda, Mike Daane, Luna Matto, Paul Quigg, Manya Repkinova. And no musician/soundman shoots more (including stuff for Central Track) than David Wilson. Melissa Hennings is a fantastic shooters, when she can get out from behind the bar at the Kessler, and Jeffrey Liles has been known tp shoot some cool stuff there too. Alexandra Olivia shoots stuff for Pegasus…I could go on and on...

Two more people to check out, although they're no longer terribly active in music/concert photography, are two of my mentors: Chris Howell and Denny Doran. I trailed them around Deep Ellum in the mid-90's and shot loads of hand-loaded canisters of Tri-X and T-Max. If I can ever make pictures half as good as theirs I'll be happy.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) Allan Andi Bill Brooks Buchanan Chris Daane Dallas Daniel Danny Darkhouse David Denny Doran Ed Ellison Evans Gadley Harman Hayslip Hennings Howell Image Jeffrey Karlo Kathy Kevin Kiernan Liles Luna Maletsky Matto Melissa Mezeul Mike Observer Paul Quigg Ramos Raybon Rodrigue Shawn Soundcheck Steele Tran Vern Wilson X live music photography Wed, 19 Mar 2014 07:15:19 GMT
Gorehounds galleries from 2009, 2010, and 2011 loaded, new slide show Many of you know that I closely associate with my good friends who form the Cramps tribute band The Gorehounds. I have shot every show except the one they did a couple of years ago in Houston; it's sort of an ongoing project of mine. The objective is to take what's essentially the same subject, doing similar performances, and keep it fresh by exercising different aspects of my equipment, in hopes of capturing some of the love they have for the material, and that I have for them.

I've uploaded selections from each show in separate galleries. I've also selected a bunch of my favorites to use as the front-page slide show.

There should be pictures of just about everyone who's been involved--of course Howard and Clint and Jeff, who've been there from the beginning, but also Spyche and Gregg the respective current and former bass players, Corey the gear-monkey (who's a rockstar all by himself in the Dead Flowers), and the long line of amazing GoreGirls, including our current loves Courtney Crave and Amber Deville, as well as many other featured lovelies, including Athena Fatale, Dixie Witch, Lori McNemany, Zamra Dollskin, Minxie Mimieux, Angela Ryan, and Maddy Freeman. Plenty of friends have slipped into the photos, too.

Feel free to get lost in the galleries for a while. And each image is for sale in a variety of formats, so go ahead and order a few if you like.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) Amber Deville Angela Ryan Athena Fatale Bryan Street Tavern Clint Phillips Corey Howe Courtney Crave Dixie Witch Emo's Gorehounds Gregg Prickett Howard Kelley Ineka Guerra Jeff Dayton Johnny Tone Jonathan Lacey Kiristine Wood Leesie Poole Liz McCracken, Maddy Freeman Melissa Meaow Minxie Mimieux Scarlett Switches Spyche Bon Jovi The Church The Cramps The Double-Wide The Gorehounds The Lizard Lounge Zamra Dollskin backstage live performance Wed, 15 May 2013 05:18:28 GMT
New Interior & Dallas Burlesque Festival 2009 galleries up Managed to upload some more galleries and photos today, including some from an architectual interior I shot (tests for a kitchen contest shoot that ended up never happening) as well as shots from the Dallas Burlesque Festival 2009 and a nude shoot that is private access only at the moment.

My plan is to keep uploading tons of pix, and then whittle them down into galleries that are concise, sensible, and representative of the depth and breadth of what I'm doing. But mostly I'm just uploading assloads of photos now.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) 2009 Burlesque DBF Dallas Festival Kiristine Nude Nudes Texas Theater architectural editing interior kitchen Thu, 14 Feb 2013 06:35:56 GMT
First Zenfolio Sale Just a note to commemorate my first Zenfolio sale to sweet L., who recently did a private nude/boudoir shoot with me, and who ordered several prints. Thanks Luci...arguably, you just made me a pro.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) 1st Luci boudoir commemorate first nude nudes prints professional sale Mon, 11 Feb 2013 21:43:43 GMT first blog post Really I just want to see how this thing works. If you've made it here then you're clearly a stalker, since nobody even knows this Zenfolio account exists yet.

[email protected] (Allan Hayslip Photography) Allan Antarctica Backsliders Bands Brutal Juice Canon EOS 5D Mark III Gorehounds Hayslip Ishi Penguin Photo Photography first blog iceberg seal stalker virgin Tue, 05 Feb 2013 12:12:10 GMT