Lloyd Wakefield has described the last year as “kind of mental.” The 26-year-old, who’s currently traveling the globe as Harry Styles’s Love on Tour photographer, was working at a grocery store in the UK not long before joining Styles.
At nearly 50 concerts, Wakefield has captured all the glee and glitter of a performer quickly reaching icon status. His delightfully chaotic and intimate shots of Styles feel like instant additions to the canon of tour images that live in our collective musical memory: of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, the Rolling Stones.
Is he feeling the euphoria of a career high? Not quite. “I tend to compare myself to other people, especially photographers that I follow on Instagram, and say, Why am I not doing that? Why am I not busier?” Wakefield told me. “But perhaps that’s never-ending. I try to—it sounds quite stereotypical—enjoy the journey more.”
I chatted with the Manchester, England, native about his year of firsts on a rare day off.
Vogue: How’d you end up as the photographer for Love on Tour?
Lloyd Wakefield: I did the behind-the-scenes [photos] for “Late Night Talking” and then “As It Was.” “As It Was” was a few days of rehearsals because it’s a complex video, and there was a lot of training and choreography. It was like being in a bubble, and viewing it from the inside was fascinating. The timing was great because Harry was just announcing the album and prepping for a massive tour.
I’d never actually shot a live show before Harry. He was the first concert that I’ve ever shot. I don’t think he knows that. [Laughs.] Before I had shot a tour, I was very much like, Oh, you turn up, chill all day. Wait for the show, shoot the show, edit, go home. But it’s a bigger thing than that. It isn’t just shooting a live show. It’s backstage, it’s the band, the team that’s behind Harry. It’s a wild thing to be a part of.