“I remember when I was about 13 or 14 I won a competition in an NME magazine and I was sent Bob Gruen’s ‘Rock Seen’ as a prize. I was in awe of seeing the artists that I was brought up with (The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, The Beatles) in just these beautiful candid photographs. My copy is battered but I think about it all the time.
I’ve always surrounded myself with creative people and looking at some of the work these people I grew up with are doing now blows my mind, it’s so original and unique – I guess we were all wanting to be outcasts in a way. My first photography was just trying to find alternative angles and light on day trips to London – this idea of experimenting has really rubbed off into my style that I carry with me today. A couple of years ago I found my sisters old bright pink Diana F+ (120 film) and I was lucky enough to come into some inheritance so I’d buy a handful of film – go around shooting mainly street photography and getting it developed the same day. I loved the rawness of these pictures – I ended up removing the frame from inside the camera so all the codes on the film were visible. I then moved on to 35mm cameras, second hand cheap Nikon pieces which just ended up breaking but my time using film was a way of reminding me that the original photo is key, I see the talent in photographers about getting the shot, not getting a half decent photograph which is then changed so much in post that its not even recognisable to the original photo.
In my ex-hometown of Cambridge, March and April was a time for the Cambridge band competition which meant there was 2 gigs of 4/5 artists each Sunday for a month – this was amazing experience and really taught me a huge amount in a short amount of time – in the last couple of years I’ve been photographing as many shows as possible and creating good links and making good contacts. That would be my advice to anyone trying to get into music photographer – get as much experience as possible and make good relationships with bands, tour managers and agencies – they will all come back wanting your help if you play your cars right.
My current main camera is a Nikon D750 with my back-up a Nikon D3300. My main lens when shooting gigs is my Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 which I’m looking to upgrade in the near future.”
We love Richards work and are glad to have him on board, you can follow his photography instagram: @lapoesiephotos