Every year for the past five years I have been lucky enough to cover T In The Park music festival in Balado, Scotland. Some years it has just been one day, others, like this year I have covered the whole weekend.
When I tell people I’m going to cover it, they always say wow that must be amazing. I think that it seems like I get to go along to the festival, get drunk, watch some bands, have a good time and take a few pictures. The reality is that it is one of the biggest jobs I do in a year, It involves working for roughly 12 hours a day for three days in a row, walking about 50 miles, carrying cameras, lenses, flash guns and ladders.
Every year only a tiny percentage of the pictures I take get published so I thought I would write this blog to show people some of my images that have not seen the light of day and give them a taste of what it is like to work as a photographer at a music festival.
Once I arrive on the Friday, the first thing I do after I have carried all my gear to the press tent is get pictures of the music fans arriving at the site. You always get great shots as everyone dresses up on the Friday and they are all in a great mood looking forward to the festival. As a press photographer who is their to cover the event I have to tell the story as opposed to a music photographer who is just there to cover bands. So it is important to get pictures of fans, weather, or anything else which helps to show what is going on over the weekend.
Next it is time to start taking pictures of the bands. When covering gigs, you get to stay for the first 3 songs then you have to leave. Then you can go on to another stage if there is a band you want to cover, or back to the press tent to send your pictures. Once you have sent them, it is back out to cover the next band.
Scottish band Twin Atlantic
The hardest part of covering an event like this is all the walking that you have to do. To get to the stages you have to walk around the perimeter of the site escorted at all times by the photo runners. The main stage was only a short walk from the press area but other stages like the radio 1 stage were miles away. Sometimes you could get a lift on a golf buggy which was a godsend, mostly you just had to use your feet.
Here is my office during the weekend, the staff look after us by keeping us supplied with beer, coffee, snacks etc. All essential for working at a festival.
Luckily this year the weather was perfect unlike last year where it never stopped raining the entire weekend.
Sunday is always a great day, for some reason it is just a lot more chilled out.
The organisers of T usually put on a great band first on the Sunday to get everyone going and wake them up. This year was no exeption, Earth Wind and Fire were amazing. Everyone was dancing, even the security and photographers. They were the highlight of my weekend.
Ocean Colour Scene
Tallest music fan ever during Rita Ora
Azelia Banks wearing the best outfit I seen over the weekend
The press tent
A journalist enjoying the culinary delights of T In the Park
I was lucky enough to get into the artist village for a mini photoshoot with Ke$ha
Photographers love shooting other photographers at work, I was no exeption.
The pit got very busy for the big acts, this was just before Paloma Faith took to the stage.
Some eagle eye photographers looking for their next shot
You don’t get anywhere at T without one of these
T didn’t end on the Sunday night for me. I had to go back on the Monday to get pictures of fans leaving.
These crazy fans were still up for a laugh.
So that was my T In The Park 2013, see you all agin next year!.