May/June 2023

by Silke Hartung

FromThePit 2023: Tom Grut

by Silke Hartung

FromThePit 2023: Tom Grut

Celebrating five years of local music photography exhibition FromThePit, an exceptional collection of iconic contemporary live snaps was chosen to be on digital display across publicly accessible screens of Aotearoa in May 2023, including a placement in the Parliament visitor centre at the Beehive. This is Tāmaki Makaurau photographer Tom Grut, who submitted a photo of soul/RnB artist Teeks.

teeks tom grut originalWhat’s your name, where are you from and how did you get into photography?

Tom Grut, Auckland. Before photography, I was working exclusively in video. But after discovering Greg Noire’s work in 2019, I became really inspired by the potential of live music photography and began trying to claw my way into the scene immediately. This was quickly derailed by lockdowns, but this motivated me to practice my skills at home so that I’d be ready to go when I got out.

What’s your philosophy around taking photos?

I like to think that I’m not documenting every moment of a show, but trying my best to capture the magic that is taking place between the artist and their fans. If people can feel the energy of the show from my photos then I think I’ve done my job.

Which Kiwi act do you enjoy taking photos of most and why?

I’ve shot for Who Shot Scott a few times and it’s always a lot of fun. He has a really strong creative vision for what he wants and has unmatched energy.

If you could pick one camera, one lens and one flash, which ones would you pick, and why?

My camera – Sony A7riii, Sony 70-200 2.8 and I have a Godox V1. – I trust this camera completely and I feel that anyone takes their best photos when they’re comfortable with the equipment, no matter what it is. The 70-200 because I think that, outside of small club venues, it gives me the most versatility from around a venue.