Before / After – New Kids on the Block




ew Kids on the Block are an act that I never expected to enjoy photographing as much as I do. As a grunge kid, the boy band craze always seemed lame to me, but as I've gotten older, I've learned that just because I'm not into something doesn't mean that it sucks. While still not likely to ever put on New Kids intentionally, I've got to respect the effort and talent that goes into their live show. It's always a spectacle that gets their fans absolutely pumped.

The last few times I photographed the New Kids Mixtape tour, they didn’t really have individual sets for each of the artists on the lineup. Instead, they would come out and collaborate in different configurations throughout the show. Because of that, they allowed us to photograph the entire show to be sure we were able to cover each artist. This year’s tour is called the Magic Summer Tour and returns to a more traditional format of two supporting acts in DJ Jazzy Jeff and Paula Abdul, followed by a headlining set from New Kids on the Block. Unfortunately, that means that we weren’t given the whole show, but restricted to the first three songs from the soundboard for each set. 


With a soundboard shoot, I typically use my 150-600mm lens, which limits my aperture to f/6.3 at the most zoomed in. Even though I could go down to f/5 at 150mm, that would mean that as I zoomed in and out, my aperture would change. That would force me to constantly be adjusting my shutter speed to compensate. Instead, I set my aperture to f/6.3 at 150mm, allowing my to keep my settings the same throughout the focal range. But, even then, sometimes I miss my intended settings. For this photo, it started out fairly underexposed. But, the beauty of shooting RAW format is that there’s more data in the darker areas than you would expect.

I started by seeing how much I could pull up the exposure and still have a usable image. As I did so, the noise became quite noticeable. So, before editing, I ran it through the AI Denoise to see if the photo was saveable before doing any further editing. Satisfied with the results, I then began my standard editing process of applying my basic color preset. I really liked the blue color that the stage fog gave. It reminded me of a sci-fi or futuristic look. I made a few minor tweaks, but was pretty happy with how the photo looked without any major changes. 


LOCATION – Cincinnati, OH
VENUE – Riverbend Music Center
DATE – June 21, 2024

PHOTOGRAPHER – Brian Bruemmer, Rubatophoto.com

CAMERA – Canon 6D
LENS – Sigma 150-600 f/5-6.3

APERTURE – f/6.3
ISO – 3200

SOFTWARE – Adobe Lightroom Classic

Musician, concert photographer, writer, podcast host and founder of The Hot Mic Music Magazine.