(Not so) Recently, Brisbane had it's huge free festival within the streets of the Valley and it was a huge success. Last year it was my very first festival that I had gotten to shoot and unfortunately due to the weather it got rained out before the headliners could even grace the stage. I almost thought we were going to have a repeat but fortunately the weather cleared up for an excellent two nights.
This year the main headliners were The Preatures, Dan Sultan and Allday as well as a bunch of well known / up and coming artists from Brisbane and the rest of Australia. The festival was over two days and with three different stages and it was very chaotic.
Whilst I was running around frantically trying to photograph everything I ran into Lauren Carney who was face painting at Beach Burrito. I didn't really get to chat to her due to the chaos but her going all creative on peoples faces made me realise how great this festival is for bringing local talent together and letting everyone experience it.
If you want to check out the other things this magical lady does then click here.
Anyway, back to the music!
It was about at this time I got a phone call telling me to go to the end of a laneway, walk up to a door, say a name and then walk up a flight of stairs. Once I reached the top I realised that I was in the Artist Lounge and that I was about to meet everyone (screams internally!).
The Preatures were absolutely lovely and the entire interview I kept copping cute little glances from Isabella who refused to say anything to save her voice before her gig.
And then there was the heart-throb Allday. I was a fan of his songs whilst in the photo pit and once I walked around the side after the gig had ended this huge crowd of fans sprinted to him to get photos and autographs and it was absolutely terrifying. I could see on his face that he just wanted to be alone but he stuck it out and gave the fans what they wanted.
When I was up in the artist lounge I got myself a drink and out of nowhere he walked in the door, walked straight up towards me and introduced himself. I tried to act cool (obviously did a horrible job) and I chatted to him a bit and then took a photo of him I really like.
The main thing I got from his interview that he is still trying to figure out how to adjust to crowds. It really made me understand what he must have been feeling when he saw that huge mass after his gig but it was kind of humbling to know that it's still all new to him.
When I was hanging upstairs I befriended the guys from The Royales and I don't know how but they convinced me to follow them backstage to get a better view of The Preatures gig. I was absolutely terrified walking up there thinking security would throw me in the gutter but to my surprise I got to watch all of the show from on the stage and sneak a few photos of Izzy going crazy and being terrific. Probably a giant highlight for the gig.
After the craziness of Day 1 it was a little bit calming knowing that Day 2 only had a few acts and only one stage. It started off with a little interview and photo with Jeremy Neale for AAA Backstage which was a lot of fun. I befriended Jeremy at Valley Oporto at about 4am last year at Bigsound and he is probably the most interesting person i've ever met. His thought process and take on life is so refreshing and anytime I see him (which is in small doses spread throughout the year due to being the most popular man in Brisbane) I always feel motivated to kick butt and do more.
I then stole him, put him up against a wood wall, told him to look cool and took a photo. And then the other photos of those of the great people in his band that I made friends with that night so it was really nice.
In summary, Valley Fiesta ruled. It was the wildest two nights for me running off to After parties and sneaking into places I wasn't supposed to be. It was all very harmless fun but I feel like that's what it's all about, socialising with new people and creating wild memories. I was fortunate enough to meet a lot of new and creative people, catch up with friends / musicians I haven't seen in forever and I got to take photos of them all at their happiest. Can't wait until next years adventures!