UMS VOLUNTEER PHOTO TEAM FAQ

From everyone at UMS HQ, we can’t thank you enough for lending your time and efforts to capturing this year’s Showcase! The schedule can be found HERE If you have any questions about this year’s schedule, please don’t hesitate to reach out.  THIS LINK  shows what days you signed up for. 

As in previous years, most bands will have 40 minute sets each hour, on the hour. Everything somehow manages to move like clockwork, and things generally tend to stay on schedule. Please pay attention to the schedule throughout the weekend. 

OUTDOOR STAGES:

  • Showcase Stage is located at Goodwill (21 S Broadway)

  • Odyssey Stage (formerly Imagination Stage) is located at Import Mechanics (235 Broadway)

  • Knockout Stage is located at Punch Bowl Social (65 Broadway)

We’re interested in capturing every little aspect of the festival: everything from setup to execution to everything in between. As always we’re looking to capture what the “UMS Experience” is like. Yes, music and musicians are a huge focus of this Showcase, but the team is looking for shots of the crowd enjoying themselves, patrons interacting with sponsors, breweries pouring beer, bartenders mixing drinks, the many folks you meet along Broadway, and the businesses that make up this legendary strip. Please keep this in mind while out in the mix.

CREDENTIALS: Please head to the MAIN STAGE BOX OFFICE located outside of Goodwill, on the corner of Archer and Broadway, and go to the BOX OFFICE tent. Simply give the ambassador your name, and they’ll provide you with a weekend wristband, and your photo credentials. 

PARKING . If at all possible, please consider taking public transportation/biking/uber-lyft to get to the event. There is VERY limited parking and we try to minimize our impact on the surrounding neighborhood. The nearest Light Rail station is located at Cherokee and Alameda. For bus schedules, and finding the quickest route to the UMS… head over to the RTD website. It’s full of tons of useful information.

A few rules: 

  • BE MINDFUL. It will be hot, it will be crowded, people will be drunk. Just remove yourself from any situation that gets heated. Remember most of the folks with wristbands paid to be there - a quick “hey, I’ll just be in your way for a few minutes” goes a lot farther than shoving your way in front of someone. Most people are happy to let you get your shots. Drunk people will want their picture taken - just take it, even if we never use it - not worth fighting about. 

  • NO FLASH. For reals. It is a challenge in a few of the venues, but do the best you can. (Flash is fine for street/crowd shots, as long as it’s not disrupting a show.) 

  • OUTDOOR STAGE RULES. We are given a lot of access - please don’t abuse it. All photography done at the outdoor stages will be shot from the pit. There will be no access to the stairs and wings as we’ve had in the past.

  • OUTDOOR STAGE RULES. We are given a lot of access - please don’t abuse it. All photography done at the outdoor stages will be shot from the pit. There will be no access to the stairs and wings as we’ve had in the past.

  • OTHER VENUES. Make sure to explore ALL of the venues this year. Keep an eye out for a number of pop-ups, and do yourself a favor and join the Underground to get access to some pretty amazing special events throughout the weekend. Introduce yourself to whoever is at the door and have them check your ID/stamp your hand as soon as you get there. Please make sure to check with the UMS representative at each venue, who will then work with the venue to check on capacity to see if you can cut the line or not. Remember... you’re an ambassador of the Showcase. Don’t abuse your pass. If you have any trouble with staff at a venue, just walk away from the situation and let one of us know. 

  • SAFETY. Your safety (and that of your gear!) is our first concern. If a crowd gets too rowdy, etc., get out. Be aware that certain shows have a tendency to get literally and figuratively messy - there was a band a few years ago that shot water cannons at the crowd, you’ll sometimes end up in the middle of a mosh pit, etc. Just be aware, and know we will always back you up. Also - earplugs. Seriously. 

  • LIGHTING. Welcome to the world of concert photography! Lighting sucks. The faster your glass, the happier you will be. The end.

VENUE SPECIFIC TIPS. 

● Hi-Dive - there’s lights in each corner. If you can get there early and position yourself in one corner or another, you’ll have a light behind the artists to use. (PS - it’s hot, sweaty and crowded here. If you find a good spot, stay put or you may not find your way back.) 

● Blue Ice - tends to be super dark and it’s usually a DJ. Sometimes I will ask the artist before their set if I can use flash for a few pictures during the first song, so that we can make sure we get a good shot. 

  • PRO TIP: the flashlight from your cell phone works in a pinch if you don’t have/don’t carry a flash)

● Blue Ice - the team has been super nice there every year. Occasionally, I’ve asked them to turn up the lights for a song or two so it’s easier to shoot. (i’ll stop by and talk to them about this. The Hornet is good about this, too) 

● Skylark - there’s no real stage, so the bands end up same level as the crowd. If there is a priority band (for UMS or for yourself!), get there early and get close or you won’t get much. The stairs in the back corner give you a bit of a view over the crowd. 

COMFORT. 

● We have a home! We will have the community table upstairs at Metropolis Coffee (1 S Broadway). This will be a place to cool down, sit for a minute, charge devices, take an editing break, easy restroom access. 

● Bathrooms - from my experience, the South Broadway Church is the easiest and cleanest. Illegal Pete’s isn’t bad, either. ‘nuff said. 


UMS General FAQs can be found here.