John Lydon or Johnny Rotten, front man of The Sex Pistols; I’m sure many will know him from other things and some may never of even heard of “The Sex Pistols”. Its probably lazy of me to just list him as “The Front Man of The Sex Pistols” but that is what and who he was at the time of a comment or question that I am going to use. Anyway, at the end of their last gig Rotten asked “Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?”.
Funny that is what popped into my head at page 60 of Concert and Live Music Photography by Mr J. Dennis Thomas. I’ve included the link to the book because my opinion is just that; its my opinion. At the time of me publishing my blog/diary there are a number of positive reviews and zero negative comments on the Amazon website.
I continued to read through the book and at the end of it I still felt a bit cheated. Maybe I had different expectations of the ‘Amazon Reviewers’.
It is possible that Mr. Thomas is a great photographer but I have deliberately not googled him for the simple reason that I do not want his pedigree/history or even lack of it to colour my opinion. I’m basing my views purely on the book and what I personally got from it.
The book is nicely laid out, covers many areas and has some beautifully taken images. Its a quick read but I feel it only skims the topic areas but more importantly it made me wonder if Mr. Thomas has been endorsed by Nikon. I say this because I don’t recall seeing a single image captured with another camera brand. I vaguely remember reading something about Sigma and Tamron lenses and a passing comment on Canon flash systems. Apart from that it was Nikon, Nikon, Nikon, Nikon.
As I am the wrong side of twenty, thirty, actually lets be honest and make that forty! I might just be a tad cynical because of life experience but then again I may have noticed this because I own a Canon?
For an old git, even without gig and photography experience most of the book was pretty much about common sense and common courtesy. The information provided at the bottom of the images was useful with regards to shutter speed and so on. However, some of this information can be obtained from photo sharing websites. To be fair this is also commented on within the book and readers are directed to look at other peoples work.
If Mr. Thomas uses other brands I would have liked to have seen the images included in the book so it didn’t feel like a Nikon brochure. If he personally finds that his best images are captured with a Nikon camera then I would have liked to have read a page or two explaining this and maybe a couple of images of the same band(s)/performer(s)/venues comparing cameras.
Perhaps I might forward my thoughts. Chances are he’ll ask who the hell I think I am to critique his book and dismiss me with a definite “Foxtrot Oscar!” But then he might just add an additional note or two to the next run of the book. Who knows?
Anyhow as I said, my opinion is just my opinion and a number of people have given positive reviews; so please don’t let me put you off buying this book.
I will be keeping it on my bookshelf even if it is only because I find it aesthetically pleasing.
[A photo of the cover page of “Concert and Music Photography. Tips from the pit”]. (For copyright of original cover image please contact author and publisher).
I decided to look up Mr. J. Dennis Thomas. I’d like to have the knowledge and skill to get photos like his so I guess I’ll just keep trying, I might get lucky. In the mean time anyone wanting to see some very well taken images I would urge you to head on over and take a look at his website.
Ta very much for viewing my page.
Jim Jimmy James.
Ps. Apparently my photograph that I entered into a Viewbug competition is in the top thirty so if you have a look and like the image I captured please consider voting.
Jim Jimmy or James.