Archive for the 'Will Stoker' Category


NCBC, Expatriate & Darren Hayes

Last weekend was the Final of the National Campus Band Comp at the Rosemount. Will Stoker & The Embers were the overall winners, with Good Little Fox in second, and wildcard Black Market Babies in third. Will & co now head over to Melbourne for the National Final.

An over-saturation of shooting band comps has given me a few bad habits. Either only shooting the bands that I think are going to place, or making more effort for the bands who I think are going to place. I’m going to come unstuck one day.




From top to bottom: Will Stoker, Offbeat Antics, The Bulletholes.

This weekend started on Thursday at Amplifier for the Expatriate/Cops show. Missed most of the Cops, but what I saw was pretty awesome. Would totally go see them again. The guitarist was apparently rather ill, and threatening to vomit at any moment.


Expats were ok. The lights weren’t as good as they had been for the Cops (bordering on being a bit TOO bright in the Cops’ set), but the singer was happy enough to play up for the camera, so that was ok. He came over and shoved the head of his guitar into my lens as I happily snapped away. Unfortunately none of them really came out cause of the lack of light. You win some, you lose some.


Saturday night was a trip to Burswood Theatre to see Darren Hayes. The first time in a while I’d actually paid to go to a show, and I wasn’t exactly jumping out of my skin about the prospect. I took my Canon Powershot S3IS along, cause I’d heard it was going to be an excellent visual show, and if I’d decided to leave my camera at home, I would have kicked myself. Support act was Freo local Simon Kelly, which amused me no end. I’d expected some sort of horrible electro act as the support, so Simon was definitely a pleasant surprise. I SMS’d him after his set, and was informed that there was no beer backstage anywhere, only water. I told him to trash the dressing room. Video of him doing a cover of Damien Rice’s ‘Cannonball’ (the S3 has awesome video function).

The Darren Hayes set was……ok. I was a fan of Savage Garden, I tolerated his earlier solo stuff, but thought the new CD was utter rubbish. You may be asking why I bothered to go at all. I told Mum I’d go to the concert with her, and pretty much regretted it from the moment I agreed. Very glad I took my camera, not cause the light show was THAT amazing, but cause it kept me occupied. I got some relatively nice stuff, considering I hadn’t used a point-and-shoot for concert photography for years.

Had planned on going out to catch Dead Letter Circus at Amplifier, but Darren’s show ran longer than I was expecting, so it wouldn’t have been worth it. So I went home and spent the rest of my Saturday night processing photos. It’s exciting times at my place!

I’m not sure what my next assignment will be, between now and next Sunday there’s Motorhead, Good Charlotte, Linkin Park, Taste of Chaos, Ben Kweller, Parkway Drive, Birds of Tokyo, Red Jezebel, Bank Holidays, and Sarah Blasko. So there will be SOMETHING up here from that list next week.


Cut Off Your Hands @ Amplifier + more

Saturday the 15th was one of those slightly awkward experiences which you don’t tend to see very often, in which the headlining band is comprehensively outclassed by their support act.

Streetlight are one of Perth’s most visually dynamic bands, even on a bad night. But on this particular night, they were in hyperdrive. Perhaps it was the fact it was their first show for a while, or that it was their first show at Amps since their national tour, but they definitely came out looking like they had something to prove.


I’ve always enjoyed photographing them. Was sent to a few of their gigs on assignment earlier in the year before being invited to do a few promo shots for them. These guys are seriously the real deal. And I’m so terrible and jaded that I say that about NO ONE.

After all that excitement, Cut Off Your Hands took the stage….and could probably take out the award for shortest set ever. They were certainly dynamic, I will give them that, but musically they weren’t much to write home about. And if I’d paid $20 to see them play for about half an hour (if that) I would’ve been pretty pissed off. Normally stage antics are highly applauded, in the opinion of photographers, but COYH’s frontman seemed very forced in comparision to the casual power of  Streetlight’s Le Craft.

But that said, if you’re in a band, and you feel like hanging from the rafters while I’m taking photos, go right ahead. Big ticks from me.

The next day it was off to the Newport in Fremantle to take photos of Kisschasy on their ‘Hymns For the Non-Believer’ tour. It was their last WA show, everyone was very amped. The place was packed, I got there early get a spot right up the front. The light show was perhaps a little extravagant for a venue as small as the Newport. Certainly threw me off, the Newport lighting setup is usually very static, so I’d prepared myself for a nice easy shoot, only having to battle the radio fans in the front row. But then out came the strobes. I shot for about 5 songs or so, until everything started to go a bit….wonky. Really good reason to drink some damn water before you go into a packed crowd. I had to get out fast. Watched the rest of the show from the corridor. I wasn’t really happy with any of the photos. This was the one that ran:

My main goal when taking/submitting/whatevering photos is to try and make the person in it look as attractive as they can possibly look. Darren Cordeux wasn’t exactly hit with the ugly stick when he was born, but in this shot he looks like he’s just had his wisdom teeth out. Having someone look like a chipmunk is an immediate fail in my books. But the lighting was ‘interesting’, and it has enough contrast in it to look ok in print, so it wins in that respect.

Saturday the 22nd was spent doing a super quick photoshoot for the National Campus Band Competition finalists at the Rosemount. I didn’t know how many people I’d have turning up, I ended up having six. I still struggle with my compositions at times, so I like to err on the side of ‘less people’. Don’t always get what you want though. Finalists were from bands The Bullet Holes, Good Little Fox, Offbeat Antics, Second Rule, The Wilderness, and Will Stoker & The Embers.

I’d bought all these alphabet blocks off ebay, and I was dying to use them for something. It’s kinda at 70% of what I wanted. A couple less people and it might’ve been more of a winner. More practice required!

I tend to enjoy more formal portraits anyway. Keep It Simple Stupid. When you’re working with a band, it’s easy to tell them to stand closer together, cause they’re generally pretty comfortable with each other. Telling six guys who don’t know each other that well that they need to stand REALLY close together is a bit more of a struggle. But they got off lightly. When I did the Next Big Thing finalist shoot, I made them play Twister for the photos. Fast-track male bonding. The above photo is a good example of how I never really think anything through before I do it. The light source is the light coming it through the window. The black background is a couple of metres of black fabric that I had forgotten to take out of my car after the last time I was planning on using it, so it was luckily on hand. It was a bit short, so Owen (far left) is holding it behind his own head. It’s hoisted on a couple of sponsors banners which were kinda MEANT to be in the photo…but hey. Having as a backdrop is far less interesting.

 One day I’ll actually take the time out to learn how to do stuff properly!

That night it was off to Burswood to shoot Snow Patrol. Was actually far more enjoyable than I’d been expecting, though of course I only got to enjoy three songs. Second song was ‘Chocolate’ which is a personal favourite, and I may have been forced to have a bit of a sing and dance in the pit. Then it was the good old boot out of the venue after the third song. No photos here cause I had to do the whole contract thing, but I was generally pretty happy with how they turned out (considering I was jigging around for most of song 2).

Coming soon to a street press newspaper near you. As long as you live in Perth.


The ‘maybes’

So, obviously, not every shot can be a winner. While you actively try to minimise the shit shots, you’ll still end up with a whole stack of ‘maybe’ shots along the journey to find those killer shots. They’re not good enough for editorial use, not punchy enough for folio inclusion, and not ‘cool’ enough for the band to want to use them. So they’re inevitably relegated to the hard drive for all eternity, despite the fact that they’re really not that bad. They just don’t fit into a pigeonhole.

I’ve been going through the photos I took during the Next Big Thing band competition, and thought I’d put up a few ‘maybes’ that caught my eye. They all have their faults, but there’s just a little something about each of them (well, I think so anyway!).

Top to bottom: The Howlin’ Novocaines @ Rosemount, Will Stoker & The Embers @ Rosemount, Celladore @ Rosemount, Generals & Majors @ Rosemount, The Chemist @ Amplifier, The Bullet Holes @ Amplifier