We've all been there. You bought your ticket to the show, you showed up early and you elbowed your way to the front past the legions of tall and lanky dudes who seem to be oblivious to the fact that they're blocking everyone's view.
Breathless and exhilarated, you settle in, cellphone at the ready to document every ecstatic moment with your favorite artist on the stage. And document you do, snapping away left and right much to the vexation of Op-Ed columnists everywhere who believe that millennials and their cellphones will be the downfall of society as we know it. By the end of the night, you're exhausted but content, and most importantly, ready to share with the world all of the sick shots you took where you swear to god the singer was looking right at you.
Except as you go to post the photos, you realize they're not really that sick. They kinda suck actually. Unfortunately, your IPhone just wasn't up to snuff to handle the poor lighting conditions and fervent action on stage. And this point I should also ask that if you're an Android user, why bother? You'd have more luck fashioning a better camera out of a potato and lightbulb.
Photos are a great way to go back to the highlights of your night, and it's a bummer when your concert shots come out looking like garbage. Luckily, there are photographers better equipped to capture the night on stage, letting you relive the night vicariously through their work. So put your phone down, give your picture-snapping finger a rest, and check out these Instagrams when the night's over for all the best moments.
1. Danny Clinch
Danny Clinch has been around for ages, and even started out interning under the great Annie Leibovitz. He's shot artists from Bob Dylan to Bjork, and even produced the documentary Let's Play Two
, following Pearl Jam's performances at Wrigley Field during the Chicago Cub's historic 2016 championship season. Read our interview with him here
2. Julian Bajsel
Houston-based photographer Julian Bajsel uses the motto "music should be seen and heard", and you really can feel it all in his photographs. From Odesza to The XX and Vince Staples, Bajsel delivers great shots that encapsulate the mood of the moment.
3. Brooke Robbins
Brooke Robbins has been all over the NYC hip-hop scene and is very close with A$AP Mob. Definitely worth checking out is his work with the late, great A$AP Yams.
4. Zoe Rain
She made a bit of a name for herself as Macklemore's tour photographer, and her work speaks for itself. She bounces around a lot between L.A., NYC and Chicago, so you just might catch her at a show near you sometime.
5. Ashley Verse
He's on the other side of the pond and absolutely blowing up in the U.K. grime scene. Based out of south London, he's been shooting from the start, following the beginnings and rise of superstars like Stormzy and Skepta.
6. Sacha Lecca
He's the Deputy Photo Editor at Rolling Stone and is known for his iconic black-and-white style. He's been doing some killer work with Pussy Riot recently, and is known for his behind-the-scenes intimacy.
7. Raven B
The NYC-based Raven B has been all over the hip-hop game, shooting artists at an international level. Definitely check out her work with Cardi B, Migos and Jay-Z.
8. Gibson Hazard
Despite his youth, Hazard is already shooting with the big dogs. His insta is a mix of stellar live shots and intimate, candid shots of the likes of 6lack, Drake and Big Sean.
9. Stefan R. Kohli
Much of Kohli's portfolio features awesome, backstage moments that we'd never get a chance to see otherwise. He has a new series called "100 Hours" in which he attempts to "capture the vibe of trips to different cities filled with shooting, exploring, and drawing inspiration from every city's unique energy."
10. Mark Brown
Mark Brown shoots between New Jersey, New York, and Florida, so pretty much, he's got you covered for all fun things taking place on the east coast. He's taken photos of legendary bands like U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Jay-Z. However it doesn't stop there -- he also offers up some pretty awesome sports coverage.