We had the good fortune of connecting with Evelyn Armstrong and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Evelyn, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I feel the most important factor for success as a photographer in general but especially a concert photographer is networking and developing positive relationships with those you wish to work with or work for. It can be difficult to navigate especially as an introvert and someone who prefers to observe rather than partake, but it truly is so important. I’ve definitely learned the hard way and have experienced many missed opportunities where I didn’t introduce myself to someone and watched a friend in the industry get an amazing opportunity not necessarily because they were more qualified but because they were able to communicate and build that connection. It can also be a hard pill to swallow when you do try to make a connection and for one reason or another you just don’t gel with the artist, manager, or client. Networking really challenges you to face not only open doors but some rejection as well and trains you how to identify and react in those situations for the most success. I am in no way a master at networking but putting yourself out there and presenting yourself and your work to the people you want to work with is the best way to learn those skills. It’s always worth a little rejection for that one amazing experience or opportunity.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
While my main focus is concert photography I also love portrait, fashion, and editorial style shoots. I strive to make each shoot or series of photos as different as possible. When editing I really like to match the energy of the person(s) pictured as opposed to pushing my own style or one way of editing onto the photo. My goal is to produce unique and eye catching photos and edits so making it a little different each time gives me the most opportunity for an unique and one of a kind result. I’m very excited to branch out more as far as my ideas for shoots and hopefully make some new connections to bring those to life. Getting to where I am today has been an interesting journey to say the least. Pursuing photography throughout high school brought the most fun and challenging experiences I’ve ever had. I’d say one thing I’ve learned especially in recent circumstances is that even though pursuing your artistic passion as a career may have unanswered questions, an unknown future, and challenges, it is always worth it when doing what you love. Only when it is taken away or put on pause do you begin to realize how wonderful all of your small successes made you feel and how much living you miss out on without the happiness those experiences brings you.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
The music venues, parks, and activities in Atlanta are truly unmatched. You can’t come across a bad venue in the city. From The Tabernacle, to The Masquerade, Center Stage and everything in between they are all awesome places for live music. As for activities, shopping in Atlanta can be an unique and exciting experience. Little Five Points definitely has some of the best second-hand stores, record stores, and other fun businesses to check out. If you’re looking for some lovely scenery Piedmont and Centennial Olympic Park are great for relaxing while exploring the city. The iconic SkyView Ferris wheel is also a fun little day or nighttime activity to check out.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d say my family’s support is very much to thank for where I am in terms of my career and the opportunities I have been lucky enough to experience. My parents have always supported my dreams to travel and pursue concert photography even going back to when it was just an idea at age 14. Springing the ideal lifestyle of touring, backstage interviews, and late night shows on them couldn’t have been the easiest to hear from their quiet teenage daughter. However, they never once tried to talk me out of it or question my abilities and have always supported me. Whether it was taking me to shows early for interviews or staying out late with me on a school night so I could shoot the last set, they have always let me do my thing and been there for anything I needed. They truly gave me the confidence I needed to pursue such an intense and unique career. From day one it was “Ok how do you want to do this?” and never “Can you do this?” which has always made me feel that my dreams are entirely possible which is an easy thing to lose sight of. Another individual who deserves some credit is Jeff Menig, the marketing director at The Masquerade music venue in Atlanta. I met Jeff almost two years ago and after talking at a show for about 15 minutes, he was already giving me advice and wanting to help me succeed. Jeff was one of the first people to believe in my work and give me opportunities because of it. He had me start shooting for The Masquerade and because of this I made more connections and industry friends than I ever thought possible. He truly helped jumpstart my career and has been a wonderful mentor to me wither he would admit it or not.