To be a successful band you need to have ten percent talent, ten percent determination, and eighty percent ability to pose properly in front of a camera. Here’s a list of the most cliché “go-to” poses that bands churn out when marketing themselves.
Photo credit: Beth Rankin, Flickr
8 The “The Lead Singer is All That Matters”
One of the most common shots out there. This shot is most likely the work of the record company funding the band. Someone obviously realized that the attractive lead singer is a much better selling point than the overweight bassist who resembles the spawn of Zach Galafanakis and Donkey from Shrek… So, they’ve done us all a favor and placed the less attractive band members in the background as barely noticeable, blurry specs and made sure the eye candy was placed right up front.
7 The “Fisheye”
A very popular, go-to effect for many bands in the 90s. However, now that everyone has the ability to do this with their smartphones, it has become a lot less impressive. The fact that your Grandma can easily send you a picture of her and her bocce ball-playing friends Blink-182 style has seriously sucked the cool factor out of this shot.
6 The “Let’s All Look in Different Directions”
This hugely popular shot makes you feel all kinds of awkward. It’s like that time you and your friends were posing for a shot with multiple people taking pictures at once and nobody really knew which camera to look at. Someone gets it right and ends up being the only one looking into the camera, resulting in an uncomfortably creepy stalker-like gaze.
5 The “Domino Effect”
This is the shot when the band is standing so close to each other that if you pushed the band member in front, they would all topple over in order. The lead singer, of course, is usually the first in line because… well, see number 8.
4 The “Act Casual”
Another classic shot. The key to this one is to lean up against something. Possibly put one leg up against the wall and maybe, oh I don’t know… put your hands in your pockets. You want to make your fans relate to you. Let them know you’re regular people like them who also enjoy the occasional building lean. It helps you sell records.
3 The “I Guess That Guy Didn’t Get the Memo”
There’s nothing natural about this popular shot. While most of the members do one thing, there’s always the one (usually the lead singer… again with the favoritism) who does something completely different. Whether it be pointing to the left instead of to the right or squatting instead of standing, the lone band member always ends up looking like they just don’t belong.
2 The “Join Our Cult”
Very popular style of photo in the indie music scene. The photographer was probably raised on repeat viewings of Children of the Corn. I guess the idea is to have the artists hypnotize you into liking their music. Which may or may not be how Arcade Fire won Album of the Year at the Grammy’s.
1 The “Oh, Hello. We Didn’t Notice You There”
Nothing is cooler when you’re taking a picture than pretending you’re not taking a picture. That’s why the faux candid shot is a popular one in the band community. Are we really supposed to believe that Bruce Springsteen normally walks with the E. Street Band in the same shape that The Mighty Ducks do the Flying V?
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