Musicians In Jackson
Musicians In Jackson
A film photography portrait project featuring instrumentalists, vocalists, and musicians from Jackson, Michigan.
A film photography portrait project featuring instrumentalists, vocalists, and musicians from Jackson, Michigan. Read more
Hi, my name is Dave Lawrence, and I'm a Jackson, Michigan native and hobbyist photographer.
I like to focus on portraits of our community – the pros, the weirdos, the makers and creators. In 2015, I made a project called Artists In Jackson, focusing on local artists and creatives. That project came out as a book, a website, and a couple of gallery shows. It was a lot of fun, and a big hit. It was my love letter to Jackson's cultural community.
After it was done, I wondered, who should I focus on next?
Music is the other big passion in my life. My wife and I are both musicians (she does it for a living!), so profiling Jackson's music scene seemed like a natural fit. We have a ton of great musicians here in town.
Let's Make Music
So that's this year's project: photograph and interview musicians who are from Jackson, practice their craft in Jackson, and perform in Jackson. I'll find out what it’s like being a performer in a small Midwestern city. How do they practice their craft? What are their inspirations? What does music mean to them? I’ll tell their story.
The project is Musicians In Jackson, and it will be:
- A beautiful book
- A website
- Hopefully a show or two
To get this project kickstarted(!), I need your help!
I’ll interview and photograph 15-20 native Jackson musicians in a studio space in downtown Jackson, Michigan.
And unlike my Artists In Jackson project, where the portraits were all taken with my digital cameras, I'm going to go analog and use black and white film to make these portraits.
Because I'm crazy! Really, it's because black and white film photography has a timeless quality to it. Not that digital is bad – but something about medium format film lends a "seriousness" to the project. And personally, film is a new creative challenge for me. It increases the difficulty in a good way.
After the film is developed, I’ll create:
- An 8"x10" photobook that includes the best portrait from each session and a synopsis of each musician’s story. Each book will be printed using Blurb and all the Kickstarter pledges will receive their copy during the 2017 holiday season. After the Kickstarter backers get their copy, I'll make Musicians In Jackson available for sale to the general public.
- Photographic Prints – either postcard-size prints or 8"x10" prints. These will go to the musicians, and to the Kickstarter backers who pledged their support. They'll also be featured in a local gallery show.
Kickstarter allows you, when you make a pledge, to financially back my photography project and benefit from its completion. But only if the project reaches its funding goal in the allotted time. If the project doesn't meet its goal, you pay nothing! If it does make the goal, you pay your pledge and earn the rewards.
Cost-wise, there's film to buy, film to process and print, a website to host, and a space to rent. I'm asking you to pitch in and help make this project happen. Do that, and you'll get to participate in all the fun.
If you believe in this kind of project – profiling our community's creative people – then show your support.
Kickstarter helps make this big project a little more secure. If I know I can reserve studio space and order books, it's a few less things to worry about. Photo projects are hard enough!
If it all goes well, I can expand the project, and perhaps include more musicians, more outreach, more more more.
What Your Support MeansSpecifically, this Kickstarter campaign will kick start the photo project and give me the seed money I'll need to:
- buy film
- rent studio space
- produce the book
Everyone who pledges to Musicians In Jackson will contribute directly to the project, and for that support, you get:
- Regular updates on the project
- Photo prints created with medium format black and white film
- An opportunity to pre-order the book!
- Exclusive goodies for higher-tier pledges, including actual film negatives from the project, one-on-one portrait sessions, and sponsorship rights
Jackson is a great city because of the people who make it a creative place. Help me show off the interesting people that live here, and be a part of Jackson's creative history by supporting Musicians In Jackson!
How You Can Help
- Spread the word by sharing this Kickstarter project
- Suggest a local musician to be profiled
- Email this project to anyone you think would be interested
- Support local musicians by seeing a show, buying their music, and by visiting venues that support live music (tip your waitstaff!)
The goal is to start making portraits in late spring / early summer 2017. Through the summer, I'll photograph the musicians, and work on developing the film as I go, making corrections or adjustments as the summer goes on. Kickstarter backers will receive regular updates on my progress.
From there, I'll work on designing the book in late summer / early fall 2017, with a release date before the holidays hit.
As with Artists In Jackson, I'll spend 2018 spreading the word, scheduling gallery shows, and preaching the gospel of Jackson's music scene.
Risks and challenges
There is no risk to you!
I've done this before, so I know that this one-man operation – from writing to editing to mailing – is all me, Dave. Deadlines could slip. Life could get in the way but your pledges will ensure I have the space, the film, and the vote of confidence I need to succeed.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)