Archive for the ‘Celebrity photography’ Category

Coldplay for War Child live at the Indigo at the O2, February 2016

Coldplay

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Sainsbury’s Super Saturday, London, September 2011

Dappy

Here be proof – sometimes, I do go to pop gigs! Yes, the music was unrelentingly rubbish and once again I was left grumbling by the rain, but on the whole it wasn’t a bad day out.

The general idea was that Sainsbury’s were hosting an event to mark one year to the paralympics, so held a pop concert on Clapham Common to mark the day. And to announce that there were lots of tickets on sale….

As expected, the music wasn’t to my taste and the biggest risk to my hearing came from the screaming girls as Dappy, Will Young, Chipmunk or one of the other performers came down the short runway to be nearer the crowd. The only upside – as the Dappy shots show – was that the grey clouds and hazy light made for some interesting shots.

There were a few female artists there to balance things out, though between Pixie Lott, one of girls aloud, the Saturdays and Sugababes the ‘art’ was pretty hard to find. Sugagbabes are basically a franchise now, although credit to the compere for his gag that ‘If Sugababes were to enter an Olympic event, it would surely be the relay as the baton changes hands with alarming frequency’ – sadly I don’t think many of the crowd got it. On the upside, I did realise how loudly I’d corrected his introduction of ‘The Wanted’ (‘they’re not a f**cking band’ may have been my exact words) when he laughed and patted me on the shoulder as he walked away from the stage.

Credit to Beige PR for being a pleasure to work with, and to Sainsbury’s for making a genuine effort to introduce lots of Dappy-fixated 14 year old girls to the ethos behind the paralympics, and to those representing Britain next year. And thanks for the free burgers and mojitos – they do make a long day of awful music go much faster.

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The Royal Wedding, April 2011

The haircut 

Wow – how time flies. Bit behind on the blogging, dear readers. (sorry Mum)

So, my royal wedding was a bit different to the usual – I ended up doing a photoshoot of one of the guests having their hair done at Nicky Clarke’s London salon, for Grazia magazine. Shozna, an ambassador for the homeless charity Centrepoint, had been personally invited by Prince William.

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An open letter to music PRs

If you don’t want press coverage, don’t invite the press.

If you do invite them, only to stick them at the back of a hall (with no warning), don’t expect your artist to get good coverage.

So – R Kelly’s show at Hammersmith Apollo was one of those nights. We were told on the night that at ‘the artist’s insistence’ we were to shoot the gig from the sound desk.We protested, highlighted that the photos would suck and that it was unlikely to generate much coverage. Requests for expenses were made and strong feelings made clear!

Yet ultimately, the issue is neatly explained in this picture. Press photographers, who pay their bills from good photographs, were put at the back of the arena and forced to shoot on long lenses. (In my case, a D300 with a 200mm and 1.4 converter still was too short so I ended up using the D3 and cropping in)

I’ve labeled it in case anyone isn’t sure why this is ridiculous.

That policy of not letting cameras near the artist worked really well, as you can see.

So, the next time an artist complains why the media buy their photos from Mr Paparazzi and they’re not that great, PRs – it’s your duty to tell them it’s their own fault!

Chris Martin and Simon Pegg play, well, a pub. London, April 2011.

Simon Pegg and Chris Martin

Not your average gig – and rightly so. Two regulars of the pub (Highgate’s Boogaloo) had recently passed away, and the gig doubled as a fundraiser for their funeral costs.

Chris Martin was the ‘special’ guest, pulling up Simon Pegg to play harmonica on ‘Green Eyes’ and also a girl from the audience who’d shouted ‘play wonderwall’ to which he responded “ok, but you’re doing it with me!” and so she ended up on backing vocals. (And, perhaps with the nature of the pub, played it very cool!)

Pegg then DJd some tunes – with a very 80s vibe!

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John Lydon, London, February 2011

John Lydon

It’s not very often book launch events lend themselves to nice shots, but as with most things involving John Lydon, you don’t always get what you expect. Three photographers, a very happy Mr Lydon to work with and a colourful backdrop. Switching between my flashed 24-70 and a 50mm f1.4 with available light, in the few minutes we had I managed to grab both a couple of decent portraits, and a few nicely lit press shots. Then John went onto give a short talk on his book – Mr Rotten’s scrabook no less – and answer some questions from the crowd. He might not always command the respect of the arty, guardianista classes, but he talks alot of sense. And, despite everything, he still clearly cares about working bloody hard and telling it like it is. Yet somehow he had the crowd in stitches, and welling up, in just a few minutes.

Oh, and they had free drinks and free mini sausages. In summary, win.

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Blue Moon Rising premier, Manchester Printworks, September 2010

Noel Gallagher

Live from the blue carpet! No, that’s not a typo and I haven’t gone colour blind. It’s just that for a film about Man City, they could hardly walk down the red carpet could they?!

Red (or blue) carpet jobs are always interesting experiences, and fortunately this time I was spared having to be in the ‘pit’ with everyone shouting at the celebs and machine-gunning them with flash, by way of covering the event for Getty. I only had time to do one or two frames with each celeb but at least I didn’t have to try and pretend to know any holloaks actresses names (the PR took care of that!)

On the whole it was a fun event, an the film looks great. Comically the unsung hero of the film, the fans’ battered Renault people carrier (aka ‘Helios’) arrived on the back of a tow-truck, much to the amusement of producer Nick London who came to say hello to me while I was getting a few shots. The back luck continued later on when a group of unsuspecting Man City players managed to break the lift.

Nice to have a different challenge too, even if i was editing in the lobby of a cinema for an hour afterwards!

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