Best of 2014: Our Photographers Choose Their Top Five Shots of the Year

We may be biased, but we think we’ve got some of the best photographers in Austin here at Ovrld. Which is why we wanted to give them a spot to highlight their favorite shots they took this year. We hope you’ll enjoy their selections!

Carlos Matos:

#1) Otis the Destroyer at Warehouse Live

Otis the Destroyer
This isn’t technically from Austin (it was shot at Warehouse Live in Houston), but it’s an Austin band so whatever. Besides, I’m not going to pass on an opportunity to rep my homeboys Otis The Destroyer.
If someone asked me to define Otis The Destroyer in one image, this would be the one I point them towards. Then I would tell them to stop wasting time looking at photos and go listen to them immediately. I just love the controlled chaos of the frame, with quintessential Nick “Bass Face” Joswick doing his thing as the sole outlier.


#2) Trash Talk at SXSW

Here’s one of Trash Talk at SXSW, shot on day 1 of the Converse/Thrasher Death Match. This was one of those “shoot from the hip and pray you got it” moments; I was composing wide shots of the band when lead singer Lee Spielman jumped right in front of me, literally inches away from my lens. I’m still amazed it’s actually in focus.

#3) Skateboarder at FFF Fest
FFF Skateboarder
This is one of several lifestyle images I made at FFF, and by far my favorite one. I’m a fan of pretty much everything going in on this frame; the clean composition, the cool colors, and the giant skateboarder about to get skewered by a condo.


#4) BLXPTN at Red 7
This is from BLXPTN’s show at Red 7 with …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead last August. It was my first time hearing about this band, let alone seeing them live. Lo and behold I ended up walking away with a portfolio piece that night.
There’s something about the look on guitarist Khattie Q’s face that gets me every time I look at this shot. It’s like intensity personified. The light is surprisingly good, too, which if you know anything about Red 7 indoors is actually kind of amazing.

#5) Deafheaven at FFF Fest
Deafheaven FFF
Another one from FFF Fest (what can I say, it was good to me this year). This is from Deafheaven’s set, who in my opinion put on the best show out of the entire festival.
This was a perfect example of how a live show is really a joint effort between the band and the crowd. You know how sometimes it can get kinda awkward when the band shows up but the crowd is only kind of halfway there? This was the exact opposite of that; everyone in the crowd was 150% present (notice how there is not a single cell phone held up in the frame). The band returned in kind, and magic happened. I was lucky to be standing witness.

Carlos’s photography can be found here.


Ashley Bradley:

#1) Glassjaw at FFF

Glassjaw FFF


My favorite from Fun Fun Fun Fest this year, this is the singer of Glassjaw, Daryl Palumbo, and it’s my favorite from the year because I love the expression on his face, the detail in his hands and hair and the lighting from the side. It also doesn’t hurt that I’ve loved this guy since high school. I’m allowed to be biased about my own work, right?


#2) Calliope Musicals at Red, White & Blue Ball

Calliope Musicals

This is a shot of Carrie Bickley, from Calliope Musicals, throwing an oversized flower to an audience member during their set at the Red, White & Blue Ball. Their set was amazing, as it always is, and ended with fireworks, literally. I just love this moment because their faces are so full of joy. (Also, is that Ovrld’s Nate Abernethy in the background? Just noticed that.)


#3) Panda Bear at Psych Fest

Panda Bear Psych Fest

This shot is of Panda Bear at Psych Fest. I really just love it because of the light, the colors, the energy and, for sure, because of his facial expression. He looks REAL hard.


#4) Resent at Cheer Up Charlie’s


This photo is of Zac Ingram from Austin’s powerviolence band Resent. It was shot at Cheer Up Charlie’s back in August, and I really love it because, again, of his facial expression. I’m really proud of the detail I captured here.


#5) Riverboat Gamblers at FFF Nites at Red 7

Riverboat Gamblers

And finally, this is another one from Fun Fun Fun Fest this year — it was a Nites show at Red 7. Riverboat Gamblers are always fun as hell to shoot because of frontman Mike Wiebe. He’s such a nut on stage and always likes to climb all over his audiences. I love this photo because of him, yes, but more because of the look on the face of the guy in the bottom right. He is so fucking happy.

Ashley’s photography can be found here.


Josh Kamnetz

#1) Aloe Blacc

Aloe Blacc


#2) Gary Clark Jr

Gary Clark Jr


#3) Hello Wheels at Stubb’s

Hello Wheels Stubb's


#4) Leopold and His Fiction at X-Games Austin

Leopold and His Fiction


#5) Zeale


Josh’s photography can be found here.