Girl at the Rock Show
By Aurus Sy
15 May 2007
Cindy Frey has a talent for capturing the essence of rock music in photos. In just a few years, she has already photographed hundreds of bands, and covered various concerts and festivals in Europe. Her work has appeared in magazines such as Kerrang!, Alternative Press, Rock Sound and more, and she has even published her own photo book.
Please tell us about yourself.
I'm Cindy Frey, born on September 5th, 1975, I live in Belgium and I'm a professional freelance photographer. I'm vegan and drug-free. I love vegan cooking, music, going to shows, movies, fashion, clothes, my boyfriend, photography, Photoshop...
When did you first become interested in photography?
I always have been intrigued by photography, but I never started doing it till May 2003. I just picked up a camera then, just to document all the cool moments I went through. I used to be a vegan chef for concerts, I have had an animal rights group, I used to drive bands and do merch... so I had been active in the music business for years, but very quickly when I started taking pics it became a real passion for me and I wanted to know everything, I was so eager to learn and get really good and it even became a big part of my life!
How did you get started in rock photography?
Like I said, I was already involved in music for years, so first things I started to photograph when I picked up a camera were bands, as well as live portraits, I really love portraits. I knew already a ton of bands from before, so they always hooked me up with photopasses or took me on the road.
What do you shoot with?
I shoot with a Canon 30D, and I have a film camera, Canon 300V, but I don't use that one often.
Do you remember the first band/show you shot? How was it?
My first show was probably Groezrock 2003, a hardcore/punk rock festival in Belgium. My first one and a half year I photographed around 200 bands, I published a book with these photos called 'Girl at the Rock Show'. I remember the beginning of photographing bands, I loved it and I enjoyed it sooo much and of course I was struggling a bit, trying to find the best light, experimenting a lot.
Do you have a favorite band to shoot?
I don't have just one favourite band, I just love to shoot very energetic bands. Or bands that have weird or extreme looks, that looks good for photos. A few bands I remember that I really liked to photograph: Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Alexisonfire, GWAR, Parkway Drive, HIM, Juliette & the Licks...
What would you say are the pros and cons of your job?
Pros: It's fun, it's always different and very diverse, you meet lots of nice people, there's always more to learn, you can be really creative.
Cons: Lots of competition, not always easy, hard to earn money with it, especially in music photography.
Do you have any advice to aspiring rock photographers?
First of all, you really have to love doing it, you have to put your soul in it, do it with passion. You have to be strong, believe in yourself!! Don't give up. Try to improve yourself, learn from others, get inspired by others, try not to copy, and experiment a lot. And learn a lot about light and lighting, that's really important. Good luck!