Behind the camera: Alex Williams

Who are you? Alex Williams – Photographer and Photography Tutor, and also one half of A Williams Photography.

How did you get started? I became interested in photography at the age of 14, starting with local sports (rugby), and then studying at GCSE and then A Level, before going on to BA Hons in Documentary Photography.

What’s in the bag?

  • Canon 5DMk2 and Canon 7D
  • 70-200 F2.8
  • 50 F1.4
  • 25-105 F4

Which photographers do you admire? Lots, from all genres.  Simon Norfolk, Paul Seawright, Rankin, Bailey, Leibovitz, Hans Peter van Velthoven, Carsten Windhorst – to name a few…

Your top 3 tips for music photographers?

  • Start local. “Cut your teeth” with local bands and really get to grips with the shooting “first 3 songs, no flash”
  • Know your camera equipment – when things go wrong (you’re moved from the press pit to the sound desk at the last minute), can you cope and create strong images?  Research and come up with ideas too.
  • Be prepared to work several jobs at once – you’re a photographer.

My favourite shot is? This image of Stereophonics front man Kelly Jones, was taken at a very special Cardiff Castle gig in October 2009. For me, this is where it all really started. I’d taken a few music shots of bands before, and started to build a portfolio, when I was recommended by MBC PR to shoot a shot of the Stereophonics and Gordon Smart of the gig at Cardiff Castle for The Sun newspaper. This started to open the door into the profession, including photographs of Katy Perry for EMI Records, images used in The Festival Guide and other national papers.

How can we find out more about you and find more of your work?

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