Happy Spring from Central Alberta!
I had the opportunity to shoot Hedley Sunday night. I think it’s the first real concert I’ve been able to shoot, and it was definitely a learning experience. Obviously, I have some things to work on in the future.
The downside to this wicked-cool opportunity? I’d also bought tickets months ago, and I ended up getting the run around with regards to actually shooting. While the people working on the band’s end of things were helpful and friendly, the Enmax Centrium/Westerner’s staff wasn’t so much (at least, the staff outside of the media room. The ones inside were a very big help.)
I ended up missing most of hip-hop artist Classified’s set because I couldn’t connect to the wifi, and then got the run around from the security guy and the ushers figuring out where I was supposed to go to get to the pit to shoot. The email we were sent only said to pick up passes at the Will Call, and we were only allowed to shoot the first three songs, no flash from the pit (which is standard for any band.) I wanted to be prepared, because the last thing I wanted to do was waste time submitting pictures afterwards instead of watching the concert I paid to attend.
Finally, after getting yelled at by the security guard- who told me to walk around, then told me I wasn’t allowed to without an escort (he could’ve told me the first time and I would’ve been happy to wait)- I finally get an answer as to where I was supposed to go. Shooting the band was smooth sailing, and the security on the band’s/livenation’s side of things were friendly. But then, after shooting three songs, I go to head to the media room to send my pictures off. I hear a “Hey, where do you think you’re going?” from behind me and stop. Yet again, the Westerner’s security guy is yelling at me for going off to the media room. I show him my pass, say I need to submit pictures for the newspaper, and was told to do so there, and he tells me off and says I can’t go in there.
The media isn’t allowed in the media room. Go figure.
I ask the dude that escorted another photographer and I to the pit where I’m supposed to do that and he just shrugs his shoulders and suggests the lobby, but he doesn’t think the internet will connect there. I couldn’t even sit under the bleachers despite there being about 15 ushers and Westerner security staff standing there.
And naturally, the dude is right about the wifi. It doesn’t want to connect consistently, and then you have people coming and going and being all ‘What are you doing?’ ‘Can I see some pictures?’ It took me 45 minutes-ish to finally manage to send off pictures that I had pre-written captions for, when it should’ve maybe taken me 15 top end.
And so, I missed the bulk of the concert I’d been waiting months for. Fortunately, I managed to see a few of my favourite songs (Kiss you, Perfect, Sweater, Anything), but that’s probably the last time I agree to work a concert I’m attending. At least until the Westerner decides to get everyone on the same page beforehand so I don’t get the run around just trying to find out where I’m supposed to go. I wasn’t trying to break any rules- I was just following the bits and pieces that I was told.
The parts I did see were amazing, but I left feeling more upset about the work part of my night, and wanting more of the concert since I missed out on the bulk of it.
Fortunately, there will be future concerts to attend. :)