Sanjay Parikh is the creative genius behind Shinedown’s photos and videos.
Parikh has captured Shinedown’s live shows through photography and videography while on tour, both in the United States and overseas. His photos exude creativity and have a unique touch to them, you can see his passion through his art. Learn more about what Sanjay Parikh had to say about his journey as a touring photographer/videographer.
BTS: When did you get into photography and videography?
Sanjay Parikh: I picked up my first Canon when I was 15. I started shooting video in 2015.
BTS: Have you always wanted to be a photographer?
Sanjay Parikh: I told my wife years ago I either want to play in the music industry or shoot in the music industry. There was never a plan B.
BTS: At what point did you know you wanted to be involved in the music industry?
Sanjay Parikh: From the moment I picked up my first guitar at the age of 12, I knew that I was meant to play a part in the music world. Call it a childhood dream, but here I am. It can happen.
BTS: How did you begin your career as a concert photographer/videographer?
Sanjay Parikh: I started off playing guitar in bands and touring the US. After playing our set, I would put down my guitar and pick up my camera to shoot the other bands. Being a known musician in Arizona allowed me to network with people in other bands, local radio stations, etc. I would do everything I could to get photo passes to shoot big shows in town, anything to get my foot in the door. I would get the occasional “no” but the “yeses” allowed me to really push myself to get better at my craft, improve my content, and develop my own style over time. Funny story, I remember walking up to this guy, Dominic, who works at the rock station in my hometown, 98KUPD. I explained that I was a photographer and handed him my business card. He totally brushed me off as just another one of the many that would hand him cards daily. I think he might have even rolled his eyes at me. That guy ended up being the best man at my wedding and we laugh about how we met. At least for me, I don’t think it would have turned out the way that it did without having had experience as a musician myself. The industry can be tough, but you have to learn to swim.
BTS: If you could go back in time would you change anything about your career path?
Sanjay Parikh: Not a thing. Every bit of what I’ve gone through and what I’ve done has led me right to where I am meant to be, working with Shinedown. Those guys are family to me.
BTS: How has the music industry changed since you’ve been involved in it?
Sanjay Parikh: Not much has changed over the years. The music industry is still a small world. The only challenging year was 2020.
BTS: What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
Sanjay Parikh: Having Shinedown give me the creative freedom to make my own art. It allows me to show off an incredible band from my own perspective, and it’s appreciated which makes all the difference.
BTS: What has been the most difficult part of your job?
Sanjay Parikh: The most difficult piece of my job is keeping up with the ever-changing amount of gear that comes out. Every month there is a new camera, a new lens, or a new gadget that I need to get to keep ahead of the game.
BTS: Is it hard to balance personal life and work? What are some tips you have for concert photographers and/or people in the music industry to help find that balance?
Sanjay Parikh: It’s not really difficult for me to find balance. My wife, family, and I have touring down to a science now. It can be very difficult at times to be away from home, but we’ve learned to Facetime and keep up with one another daily. My advice would be to make sure that you and your family make every effort to stay close and include each other in your daily lives as if you’re still in the same room. Touring isn’t for everyone. I happen to have a wife that has supported my dream since before it was reality.
BTS: What’s your favorite editing software(s) for photo and video editing?
Sanjay Parikh: For photo, I use Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop. For video, I use Premier Pro and After Effects.
BTS: How long have you been the touring photographer/videographer for Shinedown? Have you toured with any other bands before them?
Sanjay Parikh: I have been touring with Shinedown for three years. I have also toured with Asking Alexandria and others.
BTS: What’s your favorite Shinedown song?
Sanjay Parikh: In all honesty, my new favorite song by Shinedown is a track from their new upcoming album. Prior to that, I also love the song “special.”
BTS: What have been your top 3 favorite bands you’ve photographed?
Sanjay Parikh: Aside from Shinedown, Parkway Drive, Asking Alexandria, A Day to Remember, and Papa Roach. One band that I’ve never had the chance to shoot but would love the opportunity, Metallica.
BTS: Are you excited to go on tour again now that things are opening back up? Do you think things will look different or stay the same coming out of a pandemic?
Sanjay Parikh: I’m very excited the world is opening back up and to start touring again. My hope and wish is for shows to come back to 100% capacity so we can all move forward, enjoying live music again.
BTS: What advice would you give someone who is interested in pursuing concert photography/videography?
Sanjay Parikh: Don’t give up, you will get told “no” a million times before one “yes.” But the one “yes” makes it all worth it. Make sure you are well versed with your gear and develop your own style, stand out from the rest.
Learn more about Sanjay Parikh here.
Follow Beyond The Stage for more updates on all of your favorite artists.