Fefe Dobson, w/Courage My Love, Hisland, and Craig Stickland @ Tattoo – April 11, 2014

Febe Dobson brought her Firebird tour to Tattoo on Friday, April 11. Courage My Love, Hisland, and Craig Stickland were also on the bill.

This is probably the biggest show I’ve photographed to date. Of all the performers I’ve ever shot, Fefe Dobson and Courage My Love are arguably the most well known. I can’t believe it’s been over 10 years since I first heard Dobson’s single – “Bye Bye Boyfriend”, which she played during her set. Courage My Love have been on my radar for more than a year, after I first heard “I Sell Comics” (sadly, not on the set list), which is the theme song for the podcast of the same name.

This was also a big deal for me in that I was granted access to shoot the show by the respective management teams of the bands. So, a big thanks goes out to them.

Tattoo is not a huge venue, but it’s pretty swanky and the lighting configuration is fairly elaborate, as you’ll see from the pics below.

CRAIG STICKLAND (Toronto, Ontario) “Harmony-driven introspective pop.”

ISO 1600 | f2.8 | 1/160

ISO 1600 | f2.8 | 1/100

ISO 1600 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 1600 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f4 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f4 | 1/100

HISLAND (Kitchener, Ontario) Rock n’ Roll

ISO 1600 | f2.8 | 1/160

ISO 1600 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 1600 | f4 | 1/100

ISO 1600 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 1600 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 1600 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 1600 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 1600 | f3.5 | 1/80

COURAGE MY LOVE (Kitchener, Ontario) “Power trio, pop-punk, alternative metal”

Mercedes Arn-Horn: vocals, guitar
Phoenix Arn-Horn: drums, vocals
Brandon Lockwood: bass

A couple of things stood out during the set. First, Mercedes gave a heartfelt birthday shout-out to her mom, who also just happened to be working the merch table! Second, a dude proposed to his girlfriend via a huge banner that was unfurled at the front of the stage (I think she said “yes”). The band seemed to be in on the whole thing. It was a tear-jerking moment, that’s for sure.

ISO 2500 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 2500 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/160

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/125 * ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/125

cml8377_lbp_trISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/160

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/160

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/160

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/160

ISO 2500 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 2500 | f4 | 1/125

ISO 2500 | f4 | 1/125

This was the very last shot I took of their set. Probably my favourite one.

ISO 3200 | f3.2 | 1/200

FEFE DOBSON (Toronto, Ontario) Rock / Pop

The headliner takes the stage…

ISO 3200 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f2.8 | 1/125

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

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ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

ISO 3200 | f3.5 | 1/100

Camera: Canon 60D
Lens: 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

NOTES:
-For both Fefe Dobson and Craig Stickland, I was told that I’d only be allowed to shoot for the first minute of the first two songs. I’ve heard of photographers only being allowed to shoot the first three songs of a performer’s set, but never the first minute of the first two songs. But once the show started, it was basically a free-for-all. There were cameras everywhere, of all shapes, sizes and types, and not really any way to enforce a shooting limit.
-It was hard getting shots in focus under certain types of light. The blue, purple, pink, and red were the worst. The yellow and white were much better, but not overly abundant.
-I screwed up a bit by not preparing properly for the show. Namely, I didn’t bring enough memory. So, after the first three acts, I only had about 100 shots left for Fefe Dobson’s set. Luckily, I was still able to get enough decent pics. Actually, they’re by far my favourite ones.
-Overall, it was awesome shooting this concert and getting the experience under my belt (even though I think I could have done a bit better in terms of getting the shots I wanted).
-I saw Bobby Singh from Front of House Photography at the show. I’m a big fan of his work, so I introduced myself while we were waiting for Fefe Dobson to hit the stage. It was cool talking to him about gig photography. Nice guy.
-I need a lot more practice editing pictures, especially when wild and crazy lighting is involved. Must… study… photo editing… tutorials…!