Bradley Quinn

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Bradley Quinn
Born 1976
Bangor, Northern Ireland
Nationality Irish
Education Ashley Morrison
Known for Photography
Movement Belfast Institute
Patron(s) Snow Patrol, Cashier No. 9

Bradley Quinn (born 1976) is a commercial photographer based in Holywood, Northern Ireland. He is the principal photographer of Northern Irish bands Snow Patrol and Cashier No. 9. He is younger brother to Jonny Quinn, the drummer for Snow Patrol. He worked under photographer Ashley Morrison before starting his own business, Bradley Quinn Photography in 2005. He does commercial, wedding and music photography, and uses Nikon D3 and D700 cameras for his work.

Early life[edit]

Bradley Quinn was born in 1976 in Bangor, younger brother to Jonny Quinn. His aunt is actress Patricia Quinn and cousin Debbie Armstrong, wife of former Northern Ireland assistant manager Gerry Armstrong.[1][2] He was introduced to photography at an early age by his father, and started doing amateur work using the darkroom in their house.[3][4] When attending Belfast's Campbell College, he took up photography as a subject for his Arts GCSE. He then attended Belfast Institute to study A level photography. During his years at the Institute, he was picked by in-house photographer Geoff Hannon. It was his first job, which he did for six months. He had plans to attend university, but decided to take an opportunity to work under commercial and advertising photographer Ashley Morrison.[3][4] He worked for ten years and finds the experience "invaluable"; apart from film developing and location lighting, he learnt to deal with finance and marketing.[3][4]

Music photography[edit]

Quinn started to photograph bands his brother Jonny was in around the time he was working under Ashley Morrison, confident one of those would make it. He photographed bands like The New Brontes, Skintflint and Watercress, among other more major bands who were touring at the time. He used to work for free, and sent his shots to the local press. Working with music journalist Colin Harper, the duo's work got exposure in local newspapers and magazines. He has said its difficult to survive on music photography alone, as there are not enough music related publications in Northern Ireland.[3]

During his student years at Campbell College, Quinn had a classmate in Gary Lightbody.[3][5] Lightbody was later in a band Shrug when he was studying in Dundee and Bradley had told Jonny about him. When Shrug needed a drummer, Jonny moved to Dundee to join the band, which marked the beginning of Snow Patrol. Bradley began shooting them[6] and felt a "good feeling" about the band, and decided to "chart their history". He photographed Jonny in five bands before Snow Patrol and also worked with Northern Irish band File Under Easy Listening; one of that band's members was Nathan Connolly, who later became a member of Snow Patrol. Since the band is friends with Quinn, they are comfortable having him around. He gets access to the stage when the band play, shoot the band relaxing backstage or working in the studio during album recordings. He is trusted enough to edit and select photographs that are to be sent out or uploaded, without consulting the band. His shots of Snow Patrol appear on the band's official website. His favorite songs are "Run" and "If There's a Rocket Tie Me to It", as the on-stage dynamics provide him the best opportunities to take artistic shots. Apart from his work with Snow Patrol, Quinn is the principal photographer for Belfast band Cashier No. 9.[3]

Other work[edit]

He is based in Holywood,[7] and started his own business, Bradley Quinn Photography, in 2005 where does commercial and wedding photography.[3][8] His work with Snow Patrol led to his first exhibition, called "Crack the Shutters" in July 2009. It was held at the Waterfront Hall during the Trans festival in Belfast and continued till the end of the month. It showcased 45 images spanning the band's life and two 6-foot-wide (1.8 m) canvasses, one of which was made of 3,000 of his photographs of Snow Patrol. Cashier No. 9 played at the launch of the exhibition.[3] The exhibition was held for three days again (from 7–9 December 2009) at the same venue as Snow Patrol toured in Belfast.[9] He intends to do the exhibition in more venues around the United Kingdom.[10]

Equipment and technique[edit]

A Nikon D3
A Nikon D700

Quinn started his career using manual cameras from Olympus. He later started using Canon digital cameras and switched to Nikon in 2008. Presently, he uses the models D3 and D700 and various fast lenses. He used Kodachrome film, but has always preferred Velvia (from Fuji). He finds the darkroom process enjoyable, but prefers post-processing images on a computer. He shoots his photographs in raw format and processes them with Lightroom, since it provides more flexibility during editing. He gets his prints from a lab in Scotland.[4]


  1. ^ "News - August 7, 2006". 7 August 2006. Archived from the original on November 1, 2009. Retrieved 1 November 2009. 
  2. ^ Coleman, Maureen; Regan, Claire (22 December 2006). "This is out best ever show This is our best ever, Snow Patrol tells Belfast". The Belfast Telegraph. Archived from the original on November 6, 2009. Retrieved 6 November 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Coleman, Maureen (6 July 2009). "Why Bradley is chasing stars". The Belfast Telegraph. Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Bradley Quinn interview". 6 December 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. [permanent dead link]
  5. ^ "Run for cover". Daily Mirror. 21 July 2006. Archived from the original on 28 October 2009. Retrieved 28 October 2009. 
  6. ^ "Shutters open for Snow Patrol photos". The Belfast Telegraph. 6 July 2009. Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. 
  7. ^ "New client - Holywood based photographer". Harty Design. Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. 
  8. ^ "About Bradley Quinn". Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. 
  9. ^ "Crack the Shutters - Snow Patrol photo exhibition". Archived from the original on December 7, 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. 
  10. ^ "Bradley Quinn interview". 6 December 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009. [permanent dead link]

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