Kate Nash at Whelan’s – 3/7/2012

Shooting in Whelan’s was… a learning experience. I don’t know if I’d like to go back as it was ridiculously hard to find a position to get a good shot. The lack of a press pit really threw me but it also made the gig much more intimate. It was an amazing atmosphere and part of me actually enjoyed shooting from the crowd, I feel it presents a much better perspective of what the gig was like for the fans. That’s plus one in favour of Whelan’s!
Kate played a brilliant set, it was definitely worth the near hour long wait between her and the supporting act. The crowd was energetic and the venue was packed from wall to wall, and all the way back up to the doors.

My first reaction when I walked in was “shit, fuck my life. How am I meant to get a decent shot?!” but with a bit of pushing through the crowd I landed myself right beside one of the two speakers filling the venue with sound. Needless to say this thing was loud. Even though I came prepared with ear plugs I cried on the inside when I knew the only way to get a shot was to press right up against the speaker. It’s a shame that shot never worked out either… these things happen.
The lighting at the start of the show made me want to rip my hair out, the camera was struggling to find focus at some points and my ISO was pretty much stuck at 3200 whilst barely getting a shutter speed of 1/125th, it was annoying since I knew I didn’t have very long to shoot but things got a bit better as the gig went on.

After a song and a half I pushed through the crowd again to get back up to the bar, I took it as a moment of relief while I dashed up the stairs to the balcony to try and get an overhead shot. I spent a lot of this time shooting blindly to get the camera over people’s heads so practically none of my shots turned out as I had hoped, I really need to work on this if I’m going to be shooting in places like Whelan’s again. Once I felt I got something usable from the balcony I headed back down to the bar to try and get a shot over the heads of the crowd. With a bit of strategically planned moving and some very nice bartenders I got some some decent shots.

Finally it was back down to the crowd for some wide angle  shots above the crowd and then that was it. The camera was away and I enjoyed the rest of the show before going home.

My equipment for the evening was the Canon 60D with a Tamron 17-50mm F/2.8 for most of the time but I switched to a Canon 85mm F/1.8 for some of the last few shots from afar. The Lowepro Messenger Exchange was my bag of choice for the evening, it’s the newest addition to my equipment and it is fantastic, especially for the value. It’s indiscrete, light weight, small, easy to access, very comfortable and very spacious. I’d recommend it to anyone looking for a messenger style camera bag that doesn’t look like a camera bag, it’s an absolute bargain at €30. I purchased mine from the good guys over at http://www.connscameras.ie/ – they got me one very quickly as I was in a rush and needed a new gig bag.

I photographed this gig on behalf of State magazine so a collection of my photos along with a live review are available on their website: http://www.state.ie/43435-live-reviews/kate-nash-limerick

Enough of my blabbering now, here’s my choice of photos from the evening, enjoy!


Published by

Stuart Comerford

Award-winning photographer. Writer/Director of the feature film "The Kids Aren't Alright".

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