Marcus Haney: The Music Photographer Who Made it By Sneaking into the World’s Biggest Shows

If there is a path that music photographers usually take to make it big, it’s not the path Marcus Haney chose. Rather than start at the lowest levels by shooting smaller gigs to build a portfolio and reputation, Haney decided to start things off by sneaking into Coachella as a faux credentialed photographer back in 2010. He was only a junior studying at USC.

The trailer above is for an upcoming documentary titled No Cameras Allowed, which chronicles Haney’s unconventional journey into the world of concert photography.

Haney talking about No Cameras Allowed at the Montclair Film Festival earlier this year.

Haney talking about No Cameras Allowed at the Montclair Film Festival earlier this year.

Haney’s methods will be controversial, to say the least. In order to fake it as a credentialed photographer, he recreated festival wristbands, posed as artists, pretended to be security, searched for obscure entrances, “walked with confidence,” and strolled right up onto the biggest concert stages with some of music’s biggest names.

After a number of these unofficial gigs, Haney dropped out of college two weeks prior to graduating in order to pursue his photography career legitimately as a tour photographer. That eventually became his full-time profession.

His photographs have since been published in magazines such as Rolling Stone, and Haney is currently Mumford and Sons‘ official photographer. At only 26 years old, Haney has become a star in the world of music photography.

Haney's online portfolio

Haney’s online portfolio

You can find a sampling of his work over in his online portfolio. There’s also an interesting interview with Haney published over at Noisey.

Image credit: Photograph by Montclair Film Festival

  • Carlini Fotograf

    Sorry but this guy is far from being a star. Obviously the writer of
    this story hasnt heard of real music photographers like Ross Halfin,
    Neil Zlowzower, Ken Settle or myself. Ive been a pro music photographer
    for 27 years. As someone who is at gigs shooting with a real legit
    assigment, what he was doing pisses me off. To me hes in the pit with no
    assignment and hes in the way of us working photographers. I started
    getting photo passes when I was 14 and went on tour as a tour
    photographer when I was just 18… I worked my way up making contacts
    and getting real assignments with newspapers, music magazines, record
    labels, and band managements…. Not sneaking into shows with fake