Allie Mischen is a twenty one year old live music and portrait photographer based in Chicago, Illinois. She has been shooting professionally for the past four years and has photographed hundreds of shows ranging from small coffee shops to 100,000+ capacity festivals. While most of her experience has been in alternative music Allie recently transitioned to shooting EDM at the beginning of 2019. She has taken photos for all kinds of artists, like Bless the Fall, Post Malone, I_o, Kayzo, Of Mice of Men, Jauz, Dillion Francis, Underoath and the list goes on. She doesn’t confine her work to any specific genre, but will be working mainly within electronic music from now on. Keep an eye on this ambitious artist, this is only the beginning of her journey. She’s always looking to expand her portfolio and work with new artists so feel free to contact her at for any business inquiries.
How would you describe yourself and your background?
Well I grew up on a cattle farm in Western Pennsylvania so my background is definitely different than my life now. I always knew I wanted to live in a big city and Chicago just so happened to be a perfect fit for me.
Who are your role models?
Brad Heaton was one of the first music photographers I discovered and has played such a huge role throughout my photo career. His work never fails to inspire me and any time I’ve ran into him he’s always given me the best advice.
Name some artists that inspire you and inspired your vision behind the lens?
Obviously Brad Heaton, but also Sam Neill, Don Idio, Tessa Paisan, Danilo Lewis, Amber Paredes, Emma Paige (EMP media) and Briar Burns. There’s so many more, but these are the first ones that come to mind.
What is your proudest moment so far? (blogged/signed/etc..)
I think anytime someone comes up to me at a show to say they know who I am or say they like my work is super cool! I don’t have the biggest following on social media so it definitely reiterates that they’re other people out there who also likes the content I put out.
What was the moment you wanted to take the leap in this lifestyle? (artist/event/set/song/etc..)
I started shooting shows at a really young age (15) so I think for me it was just a gradual discovery of my love for music photography and also figuring out how to turn it into a business. The first show I ever had a credential for was Vans Warped tour 2015 so I think that was probably one of the most eye opening experiences for me.
What kind of camera do you use?
I use a Canon 5D Mark iv and Canon 6D.
What do you usually do before you’re preparing for a big gig?
My biggest gigs are definitely the festivals where I have multiple artists over multiple days. The main preparation I have to do is just making sure I have my schedule memorized and written down. Sometimes I’ll have overlapping sets so knowing where I need to be and when I need to be there is key to staying on top of it all.
What’s your favorite memory you’ve captured recently?
Firefly is my all time favorite festival and each year I make so many amazing memories there. So I’d have to say Firefly 2019 as a whole was my favorite memory so far this year.
What’s your favorite Chicago venue to shoot?
The Aragon Ballroom is definitely my favorite Chicago venue. Even though the stage is over seven feet tall the venue itself is absolutely gorgeous and the staff there are some of the nicest people I’ve had the chance to work with.
From your point of view, what makes a good picture?
Photographers are artists and art is always up for interpretation. Of course there’s technical aspects you can judge a photo on, but as long as you’re in love with your content I really think that’s all that matters.
If you had to do something else (outside of photography), what would it be?
Music festivals have such a special place in my heart and while photography will forever be my #1, developing / producing festivals has always been something I’ve wanted to venture into. I actually went to college for music business which is where I found my love for entertainment marketing especially within live music.
What is a quote or phrase that you try to live by? Why?
“Work hard in silence, let success make the noise.”
What is something that makes you stand out as an artist?
I honestly don’t know. I think people make it seem like being original is so hard, but originality for me happens when you put out content that you genuinely love and believe is your best possible work. Inspiration is inevitable so as long as you’re not purposefully copying someone I think originality is pretty easy to achieve as an artist.
Tell us something that you’re doing now and are excited about.
I have a few festivals left for this year, but after that I’m definitely looking to cover as many Chicago shows as possible and maybe even jump on a tour this winter. Now that I’m freelancing full time I’m always looking for new opportunities, so if you’d like to work together shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I just want to say a huge thank you to Good Looks Chicago for asking me to be one of their featured artists! If you want to keep up with what I’m doing or just check out my work go head over to my Instagram!
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