Writing a blog that could accompany my photography has always been a goal for me so I thought why not start the new year out right by following through with it? So I decided to make an end of the year post to wrap up everything I did in 2016. This year started out slowly with the first show I shot being Animal Collective in late February, followed by Dawes in April.
2016 for me, was the year of Ben Folds. It was when I really got into his music, and then got the opportunity to photograph on three occasions. The first being in May at the Riviera Theater. He was on tour with yMusic to support his new album, so it wasn’t your average Ben Fold’s show.
June and July were full of shows, and most of them involved me traveling up to Milwaukee. First was Modern Baseball and Joyce Manor (which I somehow misplaced the image files?), followed by Motion City Soundtrack both at The Rave. I had already seen Motion City’s farewell tour earlier in the year in St. Louis, but shooting it was very emotional. That had a good chance of being my last time to ever see or photograph them, but luckily that wasn’t the case.
This being the summer of Milwaukee, it made sense that I make it up to Summerfest for at least a few days (aka six) to photograph some awesome acts. Some of my favorites included Finish Ticket, Fitz & The Tantrums, Passion Pit, Milky Chance, Young the Giant, Garbage, and The Fray. Passion Pit has always been one of my favorite live acts so I was super excited to shoot them again, only to be screwed up by a huge rainstorm that happened that night. But one thing I’ve learned over the years is that photographers are resilient and everyone braved the storm for at least a few good photos.
Of course the highlight of Summerfest was seeing Ben Folds again! Again he was with yMusic making the shooting conditions not ideal (with him being pushed back far from the front of the stage), but it was still a great time. As you can see this setup is pretty boring, and the photos look almost identical to the ones I took back in May.
Next up was a tour I was very excited about: Weezer, Panic! at the Disco, and Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness. Big tours like this are always fun because the production values are insane, and the lighting is usually spot on. And as a bonus, Andrew McMahon is one of my favorite musicians so I always love a chance to photograph him again. This was also around the time that I traveled and saw him headline three other shows, which was a great summer road trip.
I usually shoot Pitchfork festival in the summer, but this year I opted to go to Open Air, Chicago’s first real metal festival instead. I may be the least metal person you will ever meet, but I love photographing metal bands so this was actually a great time (also this was the first time I ever wore earplugs to a show and it was a GAME CHANGER). Some bands that stood out were Beartooth, Deafheaven, Miss May I, Letlive., Killswitch Engage, and We Came as Romans.
So that was my first half of 2016! Look for the next post that will cover Riot Fest, shooting at Red Rocks in Colorado, and my first attempt into becoming a fashion shooter.