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Past Exhibition - Star Shutter at The Bends - Covered by Tampa Bay Times

Star Shutter by Maggie Duffy

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Anyone can take photos at concerts thanks to cellphones. But there's an art to actual concert photography; you have to have an eye and instinct for capturing the right moment. St. Petersburg photographer Sandrasonik (Sandra Dohnert) has all that and then some, on display in her "Star Shutter" exhibition, opening at the Bends on Friday.

Dohnert has a background as a singer-songwriter. Her career was beginning to take off and she was offered a record deal, but she turned it down after seeing the uglier side of the industry. Still passionate about music, she began managing other artists, which led to her photographing them. She gained access to bands by going directly to their management, working for free in the beginning to build a portfolio. Seven years later, artists hire her, and she is the official photographer for the Mahaffey Theater and Al Lang Stadium. Dohnert said having performed is what gives her great timing, which shows in the shot of Yukimi Nagano of Little Dragon, pictured. For "Star Shutter," 22 photographs of stars including the Flaming Lips, David Byrne and Chaka Khan will be on display through November. Opening at 9 p.m. at 919 First Ave. N, St. Petersburg.

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