Photographer Lisa S. Johnson focuses on the visual aspect of rock’s essential instrument in her just-published book “108 Rock Star Guitars”. Her technique — shooting the instruments by themselves, as opposed to being played by their famous owners — is a novel approach. She tells us, “Everyone’s shot [that]. You can look at that online or in any guitar magazine. I’m celebrating the guitar as an art object.”
Lisa S. Johnson on what makes 108 Rock Star Guitars special:
“This book encompasses the most iconic guitars that we have in the world — Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Rick Nielsen. So many incredible guitars are in this book… Peter Frampton.”
So many of the instruments bring stories with them such as Joe Walsh‘s 1959 Les Paul model. Nils Lofgren’s gold top is also from 1959. And there could well be a sequel — having photographed Julian Lennon’s, Johnson would love to feature ones from his father John and half-brother Sean in a future edition.
Photographer Lisa S. Johnson on why guitars are such an intriguing subject:
“I fell in love with the shape and the imagery and the sensuality of the guitar. And when Kodak, my employer, moved me to New York City, I might as well photograph famous guitars. So I started off with Les Paul who played every Monday night at the Iridium. He allowed me to photograph his guitar and I haven’t stopped shooting guitars since.”