Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

UA alumnus, photographer shoots local events


If you’ve ever been to Egan’s, there’s a chance you’ve been blinded by the flash of local photographer David Smith’s camera.

“I discovered when I bounced the light off of Egan’s low ceilings, it had a great effect,” Smith said.

The Pinson native said he started hanging out at the local bar while he was enrolled at the University, and, unlike most venues, they allowed him to use his flash.

“If you want to hear good, original live music, you’re going to start there,” he said. “They got used to being blinded by me and would just say, ‘Oh there’s David again.’”

Smith, who graduated in 2004 with a degree in telecommunications and film, is the owner of DSmithImages. He photographs various live bands and events around Tuscaloosa; in fact, he can be found shooting almost anything that draws a crowd.

“I have no musical ability, so it’s just my way of contributing,” he said.

Smith said if a band doesn’t have good stage presence and doesn’t connect with their audience, it can be a mind-numbing experience to shoot.

“You can’t hear photos,” he said. “I’m looking for energy, personality.”

Smith’s friends founded Well That’s Cool, a Tuscaloosa-based website, and he photographs their events and helps with logistics, ideas and writes jokes for their tapings.

“I started going to the tapings,” he said, “and I would always have the camera out.”

Smith has shot events such as Well That’s Cool’s celebration of “The Big Lebowski”, the annual Brews Cruise and the Asses of Fire Chili Cook-off.

Smith said Well That’s Cool is formed from a group of people who, like himself, have decided to stay in Tuscaloosa to build something.

“They do fantastic things and bring a lot of stuff to town,” he said. “They are trying to create a sense of community.”

Smith also posts to a photo blog on the Tuscaloosa News website.

“Anytime I do a show at Egan’s or a bar around town, I’ll upload a sample gallery,” he said. “It’s great because the bands are getting exposure on the News’ website.”

The photographer has shot everything from sweet 16 parties to Creative Campus’ Quidditch on the Quad event last semester.

“I’m always on the lookout for things like that,” he said. “I didn’t know what to expect but I had a lot of fun.”

Smith said he applied his experience in shooting high school and Alabama football while shooting Quidditch on the Quad.

“If there’s an event out there that I know of, I’m probably going to go out and do my best,” he said.

Smith has photographed events such as Pixelcon, boxer Deontay Wilder’s first fight in Tuscaloosa and the Shepherd’s Bend protests, but he said the bulk of his income comes from shooting weddings and engagements.

“For the longest time, I never wanted to do weddings because I was afraid to screw them up,” he said. Now, though, Smith has a lucrative wedding business with a busy spring season ahead of him.

His most recent wedding was that of Auburn football alumnus Courtney Taylor.

“I try to build on giving the customer exactly what they want,” he said. “It all goes back to customer service.”

Smith said he is looking forward to events happening around Tuscaloosa soon, like Suds of the South at Wilhagan’s and another Brews Cruise.

“Ultimately I want to be the first person someone calls when they need a photographer,” he said. “I want to have every weekend booked.”

You can catch Smith shooting happenings around town or check out his website at


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