To get this close, it helps to have connections. Growing up in Los Angeles with his best friend Saul Hudson (aka Slash), photographer Marc Canter was able to document the rise of both the guitar god himself and the band that made him famous: Guns n’ Roses.
Along with portraits of the band shot by Canter’s business partner Jack Lue, Getty Images now represents the definitive pictorial history of early-era GnR through their heyday.
You can view more images here, but some of the highlights include shots of an 18-year-old Slash in his bedroom at his parents’ house (posing for portraits with his pet snake and guitar collection) and photos of Axl Rose sauntering around the Troubadour, Whisky and Roxy in chaps that leave little to the imagination.
Image 1: Guitarist Slash poses for a portrait in his bedroom with his guitars and a Marshall halfstack amplifier in 1983 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Marc S Canter/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Image 2: (L-R) Steve Darrow, Axl Rose, Steven Adler (behind the drums) and Slash of the rock group Hollywood Rose perform at the Madame Wong’s East on June 28, 1984 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Marc S Canter/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Image 3: Tracii Guns and Axl Rose of the rock band LA Guns perform at the Troubadour on October 13, 1984 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Marc S Canter/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)