Another night put on by Paul at Harrisons, this time with five bands! In an attempt to avoid the LED problem from my last visit to Harrisons I attempted to use the built in flash on my camera, wrapped up in quite a lot of toilet roll to attempt to diffuse it a bit. It didn’t really work, meaning I abandoned it just for straight light shots instead, meaning it was quite a job to find good shots of the last 2-3 bands due to the lack of white light. Still, some of them came out pretty good, and I’ve worked out that if you pull the temperature and tint right down on lot of the shots you can compensate for the over bright colour spots a bit, without too much changing of the original colours. Mind you, I’m making so many tweaks to these photos now, it seems a bit daft to attempt to try and keep the original colours 😉
It was a bit of a rush to get down for this gig. Left work bang on time, rushed home, got changed for a run, showered, and then ran back out to Harrison’s 1854 to catch the first band O Captain. I’d heard them on soundcloud and was really looking forward to them. Glad I managed to make it on time.
Again this time we have lots of LED lights, and some natural light through blinds on stage left. This means the photos for O Captain seemed to come out easier to work with than the darker shots for the other three bands as the sun went down. The obvious exception was the bassist of the last band Bayonet, who, in his white teeshirt, was lit up quite wonderfully and almost all of his shots looked great. The singer of Bayonet was a real struggle to get a good shot off. Most of the shots looked great on my camera preview window, but once I was looking at them on my computer, he was really washed out, and being quite light in colouring made it very hard to get decent photographs. Oh well!
Ok, this was interesting! Pete at work let me know about this gig and dragged me down. It was at a venue called The Lughole, on Arundel Street. We’d never heard of it! Turns out it’s a little DIY space used for punk gigs. Basically a concrete box with a stage, a PA and a bar; a perfect venue for the Iron Sphincter. After an extended video intro about “Heinrich Von Pummelschaftt” a “tyrannical insecure madman, third generation clone of a certain German genetic scientist from the 1940’s” and how we was creating bands with Zombies. Crazy!
Anyway the band shambled onto the stage and presented me with a sudden problem. They were too close! I’ve been taking most of my photos with a 50mm prime lens and I just couldn’t get the space I needed to get the shots I wanted. The band show also included 2-3 ‘handlers’ on stage at the same time, who looked great but their dark clothing made them hard to photograph and made the stage quite tight for getting good shots. The quickly increasing humidity and smoke machine started causing problems as well meaning I was really unhappy with most of the shots I was getting. I’ve also not really developed the confidence to get in the way of the audience for shots either, and it was pretty heaving down at the front of this gig.
Still, after some judicious heavy handed use of Lightroom, I managed to salvage quite a few more photos than I expected!
On Wednesday I got my first ever request for some photos through the contact form. Joe from Little Mono wanted someone to come and take some photos of their gig at The Green Room. This was an interesting gig. The bands started before 9 and there was no stage, instead just the corner of the bar right in front of some large windows with no gig lighting. This meant that for both Air Drawn Dagger and Little Mono, they were backlit by bright sunlight and very little else!
I experimented with the inbuilt flash on my camera but quickly abandoned that, instead setting the camera up for dark shooting and trying to get low enough to cut out some of the direct lighting. Interestingly, on quite a few of the photographs, you could cut out most of the harsh backlighting in Lightroom by pulling the highlights bar significantly without affecting the rest of the shot much.
Despite the rather ‘challenging’ (for me anyway) environment, this set include what I think its my favourite photo so far, the black and white shot of Maisie from Air Drawn Dagger.