Hi! Some photos here that I was luckily enough to be commissioned to shoot around the Melbourne Comedy Festival this year.
And if you are wondering how or why I got to do this… it’s storytime.
Way back on the 25th of February 1998 I dropped into a live comedy show. I took some blurry photos, they were a bit crap but I had no idea what I was doing. Plus it was my 18th birthday and so I had a couple of legal drinks! I met some comedians over the weeks I showed up with my camera at that same weekly comedy night. Some comedians disappeared into the comedian graveyard, others became household names.
The Comedy Festival has always been a big time of the year, when I was a uni student I had enough comedy friends to get complimentary tickets to shows at night. Then in the daytime i’d run around and take portraits of the comedians. Some local, some International, some big names, some unknown. Some of the big names got bigger, some of the unknowns blew up and become international stars.
Then I kind of started to know what I was doing, I’d be photographing DVD and CD covers, posters and billboards.
But it all started with live photography of comedians on a stage, basically one person in front of a black curtain holding a microphone. Pretty hard to make interesting, but I studied the acts, I watched which hand they held the microphones in, and when during their routines they would swap. I’d shift around the venue to make sure I would get “open” shots where the microphone dominant hand was on their far hand so I could get more of their body language into the shots.
I still love the “hunt” of getting a great shot of a comedian on a stage, it’s always a bit easier with some good lighting but can also big challenge when the venue holds a few thousand people.
So here is over 20 years of experience in these latest photos from the 2022 festival. Many at the Spiegletent thanks to Ali McGregor booking me to come take some photos, others at the Town Hall and the Arts Centre.
Hope you like and keep and eye out for the polaroid portraits from the festival.