MISSION STATEMENT - This site is dedicated to professional music photographers. Our mission is to advocate sound business practices, warn against predatory client practices, provide helpful and educational resources, and foster a sense of community. All discussions related to capturing, processing, cataloging and licensing music photographs are welcome.

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Music Photographer's Glossary

In many industries, there is a colloquial dialect that outsiders and people new to that industry may not be familiar with.

Music photography is no exception ;)

Here are some terms you may hear in our community...

The Music Photographer's Glossary

  • Freetographer: A term coined by Will Hawkins in 2005. This is a pretty straight forward term - Free-Photographer. They may be found at the highway exit ramp closest to the venue holding a cardboard sign - "Will shoot for passes"

  • FWC: Fan With Credentials. I've seen them, you've seen them. That guy or girl who has a proper photo pass to get their P&S into the photo pit but really has no business being there. They are geeking out over the band, blocking your shots, and are really only there because they are "such a big fan." How'd they get their credentials? Who cares. They don't belong there.

  • Gobo (noun, when referencing a human): A gobo, in the photo industry, is a piece of opaque material used to block light or view. A gobo, at a concert, is that FWC or even a legit photog that blocks the shot regularly. Sometimes they just stake out and hole up in the best position, sometimes they just have magical timing and get in front of everywhere you happen to be. "Oh man... that walking gobo already grabbed the best spot!"

  • Gobo (as a verb): Blocking the shot. "That cloth/mic-stand/FWC gobo'd my shot!"

  • MPN: Acronym for MusicPhotographers.net

  • P&S: Point & Shoot camera. Click, flash, repeat. Nope, that flash is not going to illuminate a 60 foot stage. The shot isn't going to come out, but good luck! Please don't be upset when I have to get in front of you while you record video for your Youtube page with it.


Please let us know if you have suggestions for the list!