RIP Mike “Beard Guy” Taylor

December 29, 2018

Mike "Beard Guy" Taylor - Walk Off The Earth. Photo by Toby Karlquist -
Mike “Beard Guy” Taylor – Walk Off The Earth. Photo by Toby Karlquist –

The world lost Mike “Beard Guy” Taylor on December 29, 2018 when he died peacefully in his sleep.

We had the honor of photographing the WOTE concert in March in Phoenix. I was in the alley behind the venue waiting on our photo credentials before the show when Mike walked out. We only spoke for a few minutes, but I got the sense of what a genuinely nice and caring person he was. He wanted to know what kind of camera equipment we used and what other concerts we had photographed. He asked if we wouldn’t mind taking some shots of him at the show that night and emailing them to him. He was working on a project and needed some candid shots of himself. We exchanged info, shook hands and he headed off to get a bite to eat.

Renae and I shot the show that night and did in fact capture several images of Mike performing. I emailed the photos to Mike and a few days later received an email back thanking us for “helping him and for the great work we did for him”. He also said that he “looked forward to working with us again”. We never heard what the project was for, but it felt good knowing he approved of the photos we took of him. And unfortunately, we will not get the opportunity to photograph Mike again in this lifetime.

The photos in this gallery are the photos we sent to Mike for his project and are dedicated to Mike and his friends and family. Godspeed Mike.

Click here to see all of the photos.

Author: Toby

Toby is a professional photographer and fan of all things music. He and his bride Renae own Torenka Photography in Mesa, Arizona. ( When not photographing and writing about concerts and bands Toby and Renae provide custom Fine Art photography services to musicians and automobile owners. They also travel the world photographing landscapes; are constantly searching for the “perfect” Bloody Mary; dislike robo callers; are ruled by two cats; don’t miss the snow and are just plain ‘ol nice folks. Quote from Toby: "As a writer, I'm a pretty good photographer!"

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