CD Covers and Magazine Features

CD Cover: "I See Stars" by Marty Casey // Photo: Cheryl SpeltsIt’s been a good couple of weeks! Late last month Lukas Rossi released a holiday CD single with one of my images on the cover, and this week a CD single from Marty Casey surfaced, also with one of my images on the cover.

It’s only available as a complimentary gift, if you buy a piece from his Silver Elements Collection, and there are limited quantities, so if you want one, you might want to act soon. It’s a beautiful song – one of my all-time favorites – I loop it over and over!

My big goal, career-wise, is CD covers and magazine features. I remember when I first started seriously studying photography, I wanted to shoot features for People Magazine. I loved their 50 Most Beautiful People issue, and how they did beauty shots for each of the celebrities chosen – but they weren’t standard beauty shots, they told stories! There was an artistic element that I loved. Then later I gravitated toward Vanity Fair. But my real love was always Rolling Stone. THAT is what I wanted to do!

And then CD covers? That’s an even bigger high for someone with a fine art background! I love doing the commercial stuff – especially when it’s edgy, and beautiful, and fun. But when I get to combine that kind of commercial work, with what my artistic impulses lead me to, and there are no limits? Simply put, that’s what I was meant to do.

So here’s to more CD covers and magazine features in 2009 – I’m ready!

Marty Casey in Pacific Beach

Marty Casey at the Crystal Pier // Photo: Cheryl Spelts
Think wet and sandy and sexy. Pretty compelling, isn’t it?

That was my assignment last month when I shot Marty Casey for his Silver Elements Collection. There are sessions that go so perfectly you feel like the stars are aligned and the day is charmed – this was one of those sessions. Every set up blew me away.

Honestly, I get to see my vision turn into beautiful reality all the time – that’s not new – that’s my job! But rarely is it quite so beautiful…

Marty Casey under the Crystal Pier // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

Most of the images debuted on two weeks ago, but not everything we shot was about the jewelry. Sometimes when you’re in a beautiful setting, with a beautiful subject, and it’s a charmed day, you get other kinds of images. And I’ve been really eager to show them off, so here they are! Some of the best of the best of the jewelry shots and some other stuff – call it the director’s cut! My picks for best images of the day…

Marty Casey in Pacific Beach // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

I heard the word “sandgasm” recently used to describe a series of portraits of guys covered in sand. Well I gotta say that Marty Casey wet and sandy blows just about anyone else off the beach, so I’m co-opting the word – ’cause it’s perfect!

Marty Casey | Silver Elements Collection

Silver Elements Collection // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

A little over two weeks ago I got to do a fun session with Marty Casey for his Silver Elements Collection. It’s a line of really beautiful jewelry that he designed with Marla Zegart – and the running theme through the whole collection is the natural environment. The first piece, launched a couple of months ago was named after his big song from Rock Star: INXS, “Trees.” And the newer pieces are part of the Stars collection, also named after a new song, “I See Stars” – and come with a CD single of “I See Stars.” It’s a GREAT song – definitely one of my all-time favorites!

We shot in downtown La Jolla and right on the beach in Pacific Beach, under the Crystal Pier. So beautiful jewelry, incredible setting, and a hot rock star – perfect assignment for me!

I’m sure some of the images from this session will end up in my online portfolio at some point in the future – it’s arguably some of the best work of my entire career – I’m really proud of it! But for now, the only place to see it is in Silver Elements Collection’s Online Catalog – so go look! And buy something! Every purchase helps to plant a tree in conjunction with American Forests “Global Releaf” Ecosystem Restoration Projects. So you not only get a beautiful piece of jewelry you’ll be able to wear forever, but you’re also helping the environment!

Marty Casey in San Juan Capistrano

Marty Casey in San Juan Capistrano // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

Can you ever have too much Marty Casey? I think not! The image above was shot in San Juan Capistrano last month, and as of today it’s one of the images rotating through on the front page of

There are a few more of my images rotating through too. More, more, more on those later…

Edited to Add: As of September 15th, for the rest of the images, click here…

Edited to Add: As of October 21st, the image above is also the main image on Marty Casey’s MySpace Site – and the redesign is stunning! Kudos to his design team!

Marty Casey // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns, Live at the Key Club in Hollywood

When a quintessential Los Angeles band like L.A. Guns comes home, after a summer on tour, it’s a big deal! And when that band has a new lead singer, and said lead singer is Marty Casey, and the band also includes Tracii Guns, and the venue is located on the Sunset Strip? Well then you know it’s going to be a great show!

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

LA Guns at The Key Club

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

L.A. Guns // Photo: Cheryl Spelts

This is just a taste from this very sexy and intense concert….

The full slide show is at – and in this case, bigger is definitely better! If you have any comments or questions, there’s a discussion thread on RBL at

Twisted Trees

Trees Dog Tag from Marty CaseyI love it when people send me fun stuff! This just came into my mailbox, and it’s super cool – and not just because the ad features one of my images!

The twisted “Trees” illustration is beyond cool – loved it since I first saw it – and it’s a perfect fit with silver. I LOVE this necklace! And it’s for a good cause as well – the world needs more trees.

You can read all about it on – and buy one too!

And while we’re on the subject of Marty Casey, tonight is the very first show with his new band, LA Guns in Green Bay, Wisconsin. They’ll be in Los Angeles at the Key Club and in Hermosa Beach at Saint Rocke in August, but if you live in other parts of the United States or Canada or Puerto Rico or Peru or Venezuela or Chile or Argentina or Uruguay, then check out the tour dates on his site.

Marty Casey on the Sunset Strip

If you watched my favorite show ever, Rock Star: INXS, this singer/songwriter may look familiar. And even if you didn’t watch the show, you may recognize him from the commercials that were all over CBS that summer. Marty Casey was the fan favorite, and millions of people voted for him – he’s an amazing musician!

We shot this session on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood – but not at night, when the strip is at it’s most recognizable… We shot during the day, and were gifted with soft hazy light for most of the session, and then brilliant sun for the balance. Perfect!

Marty Casey | Pay Phone

Marty Casey | Silvery

Marty Casey at Whisky A Go Go

Marty Casey | Reflection

Corner of Clark and Sunset

Marty Casey at the Roxy

Marty Casey on the Sunset Strip

Marty Casey on the Sunset Strip

Marty Casey | In the Sun

Marty Casey on the Sunset Strip

Marty Casey | Flower

And there’s more! To see the whole session, go to Rock Band Lounge!

Or to discuss it on RBL, go here!

Just a little tease…

I recently did a session with Marty Casey on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood. I can’t share all the images just yet – but I can share these!

Marty Casey at Whisky A Go Go

Marty Casey at the Roxy

There’s more from this session, and it’s amazing! The best is truly yet to come…

Hammerfest 2008 in Chicago

When I interviewed the Lovehammers back in early 2006, I remember being impressed by the way they talked about their fans and the huge shows they put on in their hometown of Chicago. And I sort of decided then that if I ever got the chance to shoot one of those big shows, I’d take it! I’ve always wanted to go to Chicago…

The opportunity came last weekend – two years after that interview – some things are worth waiting for! Hammerfest is a big deal and this year it was at the House of Blues in downtown Chicago. Great venue! All brick, two balconies that circle around the floor, and it feels small and intimate yet holds a LOT of people. I went with five friends – two who live in Chicago, and three others that flew in for the weekend. We spent the whole weekend together, but they were good sports when I abandoned them during the show.

Shooting any show is always intense – but the Lovehammers multiply that intensity by ten. Their shows are incredibly passionate and vital, and there’s movement and color and action everywhere. It’s an amazing thing to see live – and capturing some of that magic in a still photograph is one of the most satisfying things I can think of to do. They create magic onstage, and I tired to tap into that vein, and mine some of their magic in my images. It was a blast!

This image is one of my favorites because of the orange and violet lighting – the colors of RockBandLounge – and to see Marty Casey, our RBL Ultimate Rock Star bathed in those colors was great fun!

To see more images from the show, go to: