Josh Raven

THE FAIM IN NOTTINGHAM, BIRMINGHAM AND LONDON [ HEADLINE TOUR 2019]

Once out of the cold and inside the venue I quickly discover there was going to be shooting restrictions (I’d never shot in this venue before) as there was no barrier and the room was already half full and it was pretty tight in there already and doors had only just opened, but thankfully the fans were absolutely wonderful and offered me a place as close to the stage as possible for me to capture the evening.

I managed to squeeze myself in-front of the stack of speakers to the left hand side of the stage which was't ideal but sometimes you’ve got to work with the area your in and the restrictions that come with it but due to this factor most of my images that night were solely of Sam and Josh as I couldn’t get myself into a better position or switch lenses to capture Stevie and Linden who were across the other side of the stage and further back (Linden).

Once again I can’t thank enough how kind the fans were to allow me to stand in-front of them, too take their place to capture the shots I needed without me having to ask “excuse me can I stand there for a minute” by far the most friendly and supportive fans I’ve encountered yet! Also Thank you to the lovely employees working the bar upstairs as there wasn’t a cloak room which meant no where to store my coat or my bag containing all the photography equipment and they were kind enough to store it behind the bar in the back room for me to keep it safe till the end of the night.

THE BODEGA, NOTTINGHAM

[30.01.2019]

As previously mentioned in my Chapel and Halflives Blog I attended the Birmingham show at the Academy 3 the following week and The photo pit was full of friends and it was wonderful to catch up with Mac (again), Sarah, Eleanor and Val and just have a laugh in-between sets. Even when we had finished our photo duties for the evening it was great to just hang out, watch The Faim and just enjoyed the performance they were giving.

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O2 ACADEMY 3, BIRMINGHAM

[06.02.2019]

The following day I caught the train down to London and nearly went the wrong venue as not only did The Faim sell out their first headline show, they sold out The Garage after a venue change from The Underworld and this is why I very nearly headed to the wrong place.

As the time approached for The Faim to take to the stage the atmosphere in that room was already at a high and I didn’t think it could get any higher but it did! As they all took to the stage there was some sound issues during the first song, technical problems causing the sound to cut in/out, to which the crowd just sang louder while the boys continued to rock and the audience didn’t seem fazed by the issue.

The sound issues where resolved and the rest of the night flowed as it should; It’s hard to describe how it felt in that room that night, the participation from the audience was there without guidance (you could tell a few of these people had been to more then one show), the atmosphere and energy in the room was at an all time high in my opinion compared too the previous two gigs I covered London really raised the bar.

I have so much love and respect for these guys and I don’t think it will be long before they’re playing arenas and I can’t wait to see that happen for them.

THE GARAGE, LONDON

[07.02.2019]

SETLIST:

Saints Of The Sinners
My Heart
Drama
When It Comes
Infamous
Fire
Midland Line
Where The River Runs
A Milions Stars
I Can Feel You
Make Believe

Amelie
Summer Is A Curse
Ecstay

NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL 2018

2018 has been good to me, It’s been one of those years full of development and growth as a photographer and personally. I feel I’m in a better head space and growing in confidence with my work daily which I feel has shown in the work I have produced through out the year. So lets have a recap and look at some special moments from this year.

Paramore

Now anyone who knows me well, knows how much I love this band and how long I’ve admired their work. This was my second time shooting the band which blows my mind to even think I even got to photograph them once never mind twice. When I first picked up a camera back in 2012 not having a clue how to use it, I set out writing a list of artists, bands i wanted to shoot; My top four were Paramore, P!nk, Anberlin and Bring Me The Horizon. I used to tell everyone If i ever make something of this “Camera Thing” then It’s got to be shooting those individuals and if that ever happened i’d die happy knowing I achieved what I set out to do.

So this band holds a special place in my heart, in my drive and passion to continue being a photographer even at those times I’ve come close to putting the camera down for good they always seem to keep me going.

G Eazy

G Eazy was an interesting show; I arrived slightly late to the venue due to traffic and once inside I soon found out I was the only photographer covering the show and the stage was already covered in a thick smoke hoovering above the stage floor. Now honestly hadn’t heard much of G Eazy’s solo work and only the collobration tracks. The show was wild and the lighting was insane strobe’s constantly flashing so my hope of any decent photographs was non-existent but too my surprise I managed to capture some little gems.

Model Photoshoots
Models:
Ryan Davies-Hall [ @ryandavieshall]
Natasha Lawer [@tasha_
lawer]
Shawna Leigh [@shxwnaleigh]
Kesha Edwards [@keshieboo]
Alex Abnett [@alexabnett1]

Demo

Demi Lovato

When arriving to see Demi I wasn’t sure if it was pit access or sound desk as the shooting point; it turned out to be sound desk and luckily enough I brought my telephoto lens along with me just incase but one thing I didn’t bring was my foot stall to stand on, so I would have a little height advantage over the audiences heads to get the shots I needed. Demi’s sound team could see the “oh s**t, what am I going to do” look on my face as there was no ledge for my to stand on and the other photographers had brought their step stools; luckily they were super kind to me and let me stand on top of a flight case which would usually contained all their gear giving me loads of height advantage above the other photographers and audience. So Shout out to Demi Lovato’s crew for helping me out and being so kind to me on the night.

Slamdunk Festival Midlands
Highlights:
The Faim, PVRIS, Twin Atlantic, Frank Carter and The Rattlesnakes, Palaye Royale

Slam Dunk Festival is by far one of my favourites to attend for many reasons and I’ve been lucky enough to shoot it for five years running. I always find it a great way to discover new bands, like this year I ended up seeing The Faim, Palaye Royal and Knuckle puck all for the first time live. I was introduced to Palaye Royal just a day before the festival as a friend sent me some tracks to check out on Spotify and straight away I knew I had to add them to my shooting schedule for that day. So here are a few of my favourites from a handful of bands I captured that day.

CKY

CKY I grew up listening too and who doesn’t know who CKY are?. This was my third time seeing the guys and I was lucky enough to talk to the guys backstage after their set as at the time I was working with Sumo Cyco. I was shocked to find out the guys knew who I was and recognised me for my previous live images of them; So we ended up shooting a couple of portraits together; Also may I add they were so welcoming and genuinely awesome people.

Florence + The Machine

One of my highlights for the year was defiantly getting to shoot Florence + The Machine finally. I was so excited I actually felt sick, mind you I was also panicking as I thought my camera was on the way out as I had a few technical issues the night before using it but thanks to a fellow colleague he reassured me my camera was fine after checking it over before Florence was due on stage (see not everything runs smoothly). Florence took to the stage and I was in awe of her, her voice, her presence and there I was singing along quietly to myself behind the camera and I snapped away quickly (this lady moves fast on stage). I came away from the show filled with joy I couldn’t stop smiling, I felt like i personally achieved something.

Josh Raven ~ The Faim

Location: Camden, London & Custard Factory, Birmingham

After seeing The Faim at Slam Dunk Festival I couldn’t stop listening to their music and whilst I was in London for the day I happened to notice they too were also in town. After talking with Josh I arranged a shoot with him for later that day after the band had finished with rehearsals for their Reading and Leeds festival performances. Unfortunately when Josh had finished I was already on route to Islington Academy to see Fever 333 headline show but we organised a shoot for the following day so it was another early get up and a trip down to London for me the following day.

Upon meeting Josh in Euston station we decided to head to Camden as it was close by and Josh had prior engagements with the band for later on in the day so this was the perfect location as it was close to everything. Straight away we “clicked” and talked about an array of topics and had a laugh in the process.

A few months later The Faim were supporting Against The Current on their UK/EU Tour. Once again I met up with Josh before the show to capture some images then later met the rest of the band for the first time and they were so welcoming and genuine nice people. I watched them soundcheck before photographing their performance and Against The Current’s. While Against The Current were still playing I took the time to grab some photos of Sam and Sean. I then explained an idea I had to the band about doing a wire-wool photo and that I’d do my best to not set them alight (this was my first time trying something like this), Thankfully they were up for the idea and trusted me enough to try this out. Overall I learnt a lot from the experience and the wire-wool photo can be found on my instagram IG: @loveandlightimages

Getting to work with Josh this year was an absolute pleasure; he’s such wonderful individual to work with and allows your to express your creativity and try new ideas. 90% of the photographs I have on file is either Josh smiling or laughing; He has an amazing positive, supportive energy about him and I’ve noticed this too with his interactions with the fans just like the other band members, I have a lot of respect and love for them all.

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Lady Gaga

Now what can I say about Lady Gaga; Firstly I was just attending the show I wasn’t there on photo grounds even though I took my Canon G7X MK II in my pocket just to see if I could achieve getting at least one decent photograph from the crowd. I Attended the show with my best friend “Emlehh” who’s see Gaga countless times and told me I was in for a right treat and she wasn’t wrong.

What I found strange was there was no support act, the support was her Documentary DVD so entering the arena to see people just sitting on the flat floor beers in hand watching the screens was very bizarre to me. Start to finish everyone was dancing, singing and there was just a huge positive vibe and major support for members of the LGBTQ+ community.

The show ran over as Gaga was filming for a DVD and wasn't happy with “Scheibe” as there was a lighting issue during the first performance so she continued with the song to the end; said to the audience do you mind if I do that again and so she did. I was over-joyed by the time the show finished and just want to go out and continue having a good time but I didn't, I ended up back home just before midnight and crashed right out.

The Aces

I discovered The Aces music via Spotify recommending them to me as I listened to something similar and then It wasn’t long after this I noticed they were doing their first UK Tour, so naturally I had to attend. I think these girls will go far and it’s one of many new artists I discovered this year.

Years & Years

This was a special show for me as my friend Rob had brought me tickets to the show for my birthday back in August; So it was an evening of Birthday Celebrations considering we didn’t get to see one another for either of our Birthdays this year, so safe to say we celebrated that night and are plaining on having “coded” matching Years & Years tattoos.

Jessie J

This was my fourth time seeing Jessie J live but my first time photographing her and again just like with Florence I was full of excitement. Her setlist was split up into four sections to spell out her album title R.O.S.E;
Realisations, Obsessions, Sex and Empowerment and with each section came an outfit change meaning we got to shoot the first two songs of each section which was amazing opportunity as usually its the three song rule then your out.

Rayne’s Baby Brain Cake Smash

This photoshoot was by far one of my favourites this year, I love how out the box the idea is compare to your traditional “pretty” cake smash photoshoots. The contrast between Minnie Mouse and the gore was something I initially thought “how was I going to make this work” but the client and myself are super happy with the results and I loved the challenge. Can I get some more “Out of the box” shoots?

Fever 333
Fever 333 Headlining Islington Academy
Fever 333 Supporting Bring Me The Horizon

FEVER 333 call their gigs demonstrations because they’re about much more than just a band playing music on stage. They’re about something much bigger than the room they take place in, or the three people onstage. It’s about spreading a positive attitude about change and that 100% came across when I seen them at Islington.

Then I found out they were to support Bring Me The Horizon on their UK/EU Tour and I was ecstatic to see them again within the same year.

I’m looking forward to hearing “ Strength In Numb333rs” in January and to see where else this band goes.

Sumo Cyco

Many times I’ve tried to see Sumo Cyco live but for one reason or another it never happened but this time it did. I headed down to the Asylum Birmingham where I was met my Oscar who introduced me to the rest of the band before I watched them sound check. Shortly after we did a little photoshoot before I ended up shooting their whole set and captured some video footage; which hopefully at some point you’ll get to see once I get my head around video editing as this is something I’m trying my hand at. I had an amazing time that night working with them, sharing stories and joking about; I look forward to seeing them again soon in the future.

Photo: Drw-Images

So that’s it 2018 is nearly over with and as you can see I’ve managed to tick off two amazing female artists off my “bucket list” that I written out in 2012 when I first picked up a camera not having a clue how it functioned. Those moments I will cherish for the happiness I felt when standing feet away in the pit with my camera at the ready as they took to the stage.

I’d also like to thank the publications, bands and individuals that have allowed me to work with them this year and for being super supportive of me. Lastly I’d like to say Thank You, too you reading this for supporting me, commenting, sharing, liking and even drawing your own versions of my work; I’m forever grateful for the love and kind comments I receive from each and everyone one of you.

Here’s to 2019.

Soph

THE FAIM AT O2 INSTITUTE BIRMINGHAM [21.09.2018]

The Faim supporting Against the Current on their Past Lives Tour at the O2 Institute Birmingham.

JOSH RAVEN

Here is a small selection of portraiture images taken with Josh Raven of The Faim in London ahead of his appearance at Reading and Leeds Festival 2018.

THE FAIM AT SLAMDUNK FESTIVAL MIDLANDS [28.05.18]

The Australian Alternative-Pop group The Faim performing on the Rocksound Breakout Stage at Slamdunk Festival In Birmingham.