Nightlife photography: Cool New York photographers

Feast your eyes on some of NYC’s best nightlife photography, and hear from the people behind the lens.

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Without nightlife photography, the whirlwind of club parties would be a blur to all but the least-indulgent imbibers. (And really, who among us is fully clearheaded when out and about?) Luckily, New York boasts a bevy of great nightlife shutterbugs to augment your fuzzy memories. View great shots from some of the current scene’s best, and while you’re at it, discover a few tricks of their trade.

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  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

    Nightlife photography by Kenny Rodriguez

    Amanda Lepore

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

    Nightlife photography by Kenny Rodriguez

    Le Bain

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

    Nightlife photography by Kenny Rodriguez

    Jay-Z

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

  • Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

    Nightlife photography by Kenny Rodriguez

    Tiki Disco

Photograph: Kenny Rodriguez

Nightlife photography by Kenny Rodriguez

Amanda Lepore


Kenny Rodriguez (kennyrodriguez.com)

As the official photographer for parties like the Rub and Tiki Disco, Rodriguez’s goal when shooting is to, as he puts it, “capture that raw, sexy honesty that people have.

His approach

“I’ve made the flash mine—I’m not going to tell you because it’s my secret. I do it in a way that it looks like there’s a hole of light that just pierced into this night for a millisecond and captured everything really real, and then I fade back into the darkness.”

His tips for shooting nightlife

“Learn your craft before you step out into the night. Photography is managing light and composing a shot. First, you gotta have an eye. Second, learn how to manage light. When you step into nightlife, that’s an animal; it’s dark and it’s loud. It’s a beast.”

“You can’t wear earplugs because then you don’t feel the music. It’s muffled.”

His favorite parties to shoot
“The Rub is like a family. It’s got the most diverse crowd, the best representation of what New York City is. Hip-hop, R&B, house, rock, everything; the crowd reflects that, and they’re so happy. I’ve never seen a fight, I’ve never seen anything crazy like that, never.”

“The crowd at Freedom is older but very diverse. They’re lovers of hip-hop, ’90s and ’80s hip-hop, the real shit—not Drake or all that shit.”

“I do events at Le Bain at the Standard. That place is the best place to shoot. All of the walls are black, the ceiling’s black, it’s ideal for a nightlife photographer. You can really shape your light and make it look really, really intimate.”



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