allen childs, new york musician


I’ve been wanting to create an epic, New York City photo look for a musician for a while now. So when Allen Childs expressed to me that he needed some photos for the website he was building, I proposed we try a rooftop with a view of the Manhattan skyline.

No good art comes without a price, and that price came in the form of a 5th. floor walk up with no direct roof access. So we humped his and my gear up to the top apartment, out on to the terrace, and then up a fire escape to the roof. Not an easy task with a 70 pound Mesa Boogie amplifier. I wanted him to actually have the experience the photos were supposed to convey, so we ran an extension cord down into the apartment below and powered up his amp. Then I set up three speed lights and set my color balance to florescent and gelled my key light accordingly. Once he and I both had our gear set up, it was time to shoot.

I cannot tell you what an amazing experience it was being on the roof of a New York City building on a warm spring evening photographing a guitarist while he played tasty jazz and blues licks. I would’ve stayed up there forever, but the pesky sun decided to set and the owner of the building needed us to leave.


If you have your own vision you want to bring to life, contact me and let’s talk!

4 Comments Add yours

  1. awesome! worth the 5 floor walkup!


    1. nwjohnston says:

      Thanks! I just kept reminding myself, “lift with your legs!”


  2. Claire says:

    Looks like you both had a good New York evening. And memorable. Stunning.


  3. nwjohnston says:

    Reblogged this on NJohnston Photography blog and commented:

    I still really love this shoot and feel compelled to re-blog it.


Thanks for commenting! Check out more weddings, portraits and photos on my website NJohnston Photography.

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