This shot was taken out at Sandstone Amphitheater—or whatever sponsor’s name it’s called these days—at a tribute band concert. Earlier that day (in July) I had just bought the Nikon 85mm 1.8G, and as I always am when I buy new gear, I’m eager to use it. And I was blown away by it. For a lens as “cheap” as it was ($500) it turned out to be nearly every bit as good as it’s more expensive 85mm 1.4G brother (that sells for $1700+). Anyway, I was amazed how sharp the lens was, as well as the way it rendered the bokeh (background blur).
Pertaining to this shot especially, it’s another one of those by-now standard tropes I make about composition and lighting and timing. 8pm or so on a summer evening…there’s no better natural light. You combine that with the nature of the event itself, one where 10,000-plus people (I heard as many as 15 grand or even more depending on the source), and you get a wonder opportunity to get a shot all aspiring musicians dream of. One comment I heard more than once, both about this event and a subsequent event there with a different set of tribute bands, was how awesome it was to be able to play Sandstone to a crowd that size. Nearly all the local musicians grew up seeing their favorite bands pack that venue, so playing it themselves was literally a dream come true and meant so much.
Like the Beth photos I swapped, I ended up swapping this one with the Candy Rat photo at the last minute, on the basis of it having more sentimental value for me, considering I’m friends with Pat.