Friday, June 24, 2011

Let the festivals BEGIN!!!

The blog is going to get a bit quieter over the summer.

Why you ask? I've received my accreditation for the Montreal Jazz festival and the Vans Warped tour. I also applied (but am still waiting) on the Heavy MTL and Osheaga festivals.

I should be getting some greats from the Jazz fest such as Tony Bennett, Colin James, Bootsy Collins and many others. My shooting schedule is about 20 bands between June 25th and July 4. I get to shoot at some top notch venues like the Metropolis, Place des Arts and many others.

A few weeks after that, I'll be heading to the Vans Warped tour, which I'll be shooting about 20 bands, but all in the same day! Going to be insane, I'm sooo psyched.

I think in between I'll be having some downtime, just to enjoy the summer somewhat. If I do get Heavy MTL, it's the weekend after Warped. 2 days of metal. And if I get Osheaga, it's the weekend after Heavy MTL. 3 days of pop rock.

Let the festivals BEGIN!

Monday, June 20, 2011

"You would not believe your eyes..."

I get home from a days work. My cell phone rings. It's Production Iris.
"Hey, are you free to shoot?
Sure, when?
In about 2 hours!"

And again, grab my gear, head out the door. On the menu tonight? Trendy pop band called Owl City. Wow, I actually know of them! They have this catchy song called Fireflies (yes, the title of this post is the opening lyric.)

This was a bit of an odd show to shoot. I've been used to showing up early, finding a spot, getting comfortable. Maybe shooting the opening band, maybe not. But for Owl City, I wasn't allowed in for the opening band. I was there to shoot them, no one else. 3 songs and out. They were going on around 8:30pm and the 4 photographers there were waiting at the entrance for our cue to go in. The Evenko organizer came by, gave us the 3 song spcheil and let us in.

Ok... not what I was expecting. The floor was already packed with fans. I couldnt get in close. I managed to make my way to about the 6th row on one side and did some shots there. I then had to move around in back of the crowd, shooting between heads (thankfully most of the fans are short teenaged girls hehe), trying to get something decent, emotional and interesting.

It was a real challenge I must say. One I haven't faced before. I'm getting used to getting the shots I need in 3 songs. I'm learning to shoot with bad lighting, or simply not to shoot with a total blue wash of light. But this was all that, and no easy access anywhere.

Nothing better than a bit of a challenge to get you going.

The gallery is up! Click ici

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A new baby!

No, not a real baby.

I decided that with the amount of shows I have scheduled to shoot, and the fact that I am totally loving it, I should invest in a better low light / high ISO camera. So I do have a new baby... the Canon 5D Mark II

I must say, while the 7D is an awesome camera, nothing compares to shooting with a full frame sensor. It shows that it is older technology compared to the 7D: less focus points, less sensitive focus points, slower FPS, monochrome focusing only,.... but the image quality is just sublime. I actually texted my friend Didier during the show (he went full frame about 8-9 months ago with a 1D IV) asking him if it was an awesome LCD or is full frame really that sweet. All he answered was : "welcome to a new level of photography".

I had the chance to try out the camera on the first day I bought it. Shooting the HHQC (Hip Hop Quebec) show at Club Soda, part of the Francofolies music festival. A series of Quebec hip hop artists all taking the stage for one night. It was pretty awesome. I'm not a huge fan of hip hop, but the music was really catchy, and the fans were totally loving it.

My gallery for the show is about 100 images.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Anyone remember the game Gauntlet? I feel like the Warrior, who is low on health, moving slowly, and you hear the game-master say "Warrior Needs Food"!

Things have been pretty hectic with my shows. A few days after Cindy and Sebastien's wedding (which was the day after a all night metal show), I was called semi last minute to shoot a band called Blackfield, who were in Canada for the first time.

A few days after that, I was given the go for my first ever show at Montreal's Bell Centre. This is where the Montreal Canadians play and is pretty much the go-to venue for all big bands. From Bon Jovi, Foo Fighters, Janet Jackson,... this is THE venue. My cherry popper was a french artist named Maxime Landry, who is the winner of Quebec's version of American Idol. It was awesome to experience shooting with the whose who in the media world.

And then after THAT, it was back to Club Soda to shoot the semi-finals of the Emergenza festival, which featured 6-7 bands.

I'm running left and right and would love to give a more detailed wrap-up of each show, but this mini blog entry will have to do.