That Was The Year That Was…Hello 2013

Well I thought I would put together a review of my year in 2012 – mainly for my benefit to reflect on the things that I have done, and to judge how far I will have progressed when I look back next year. I have been lucky to work with some super talented and creative people in 2012- for that  I am forever grateful

This was my first full year as house photographer at Newcastle o2 Academy – during the year I shot over 250 gigs there and at other venues. I have also done an array of music videos and photo shoots. I will try to put some of my highlights below.

The year started with me getting busy finishing the edit of the video for the single  Your Melodica by The Union Choir. A year later and I still feel very proud of my first music video. I am looking forward to their album this year

Later in January I took on a commission  to film Bridie Jackson and the Arbour album launch at their sold out gig at Gateshead Sage . It was a real test we used five cameras and a load of memory cards. We even filmed the two support acts Matt Stalker and the Fables, and Nathalie Stern. I spent most of January, and February editing this. It was a challenge and  has led to more people commissioning my work.

Later in the month I did an impromptu photo shoot with Bird Island

Bird Island Photo Shoot  2012

At the end of the month I done the last  ( for the moment) of my live acoustic High Bridge sessions with Tusk. Which we filmed in my studio – I love this band. I stopped doing these just because of limited time – I would like to do more of these in 2013

During the month I was busy shooting bands

The Maccabees Newcastle o2 Academy 29 January 2012-4.jpg

The Maccabees Newcastle O2 Academy 29 January 2012

February kicked off with Howler at The Cluny – where I got hit by of all things an apple thrown from the stage

Howler Newcastle Cluny 1 February 2012-5.jpg

Howler Newcastle Cluny 1 February 2012

It was a pleasure to do the first promo shots for Symphonic Pictures. I done the last Detroit Social Club photo shoot with Johnny and Dale, it is nice symmetry that I have done the first photo shoot with their new band. I can’t wait for their new EP later this year – they work so hard and have some fantastic tunes.

symphonicpicturesportraits-3  symphonicpicturesportraits-2  symphonicpicturesportraits-1  symphonicpicturesportraits-4  symphonicpicturesportraits-5

The poster below was designed by Paul BurgessGraphic Design

Symphonic Pictures Press Pictures by Paul Burgess Graphic Design

They were also the first band to take part in my AAA project ( more details of this project can be found in a earlier post) – here is an image from the shoot

symphonic pictures aaa

In February I also started work on the Natasha Haws video for her first single Stepping Stone. It is a beautiful song. It was a real pleasure to work on this

Some of my live shots from February

Those Furious Flames Newcastle Academy 4 February 2012-4.jpg

Those Furious Flames Newcastle Academy 4 February 2012

Shinedown Newcastle Academy 10 February 2012-6.jpg

Shinedown Newcastle Academy 10 February 2012

Blackout Kerrang Tour Newcastle Academy 12 February 2012-6.jpg

Blackout Kerrang Tour Newcastle Academy 12 February 2012

Metronomy NME Awards Tour Newcastle Academy 9 February 2012-1.jpg

Metronomy NME Awards Tour Newcastle Academy 9 February 2012

Brand New Newcastle Academy 16 February 2012-2.jpg

Brand New Newcastle Academy 16 February 2012

Melanie C Newcastle Academy 26 February 2012-7.jpg

Melanie C Newcastle Academy 26 February 2012

Bridie Jackson and the Arbour Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012-1.jpg

Bridie Jackson and the Arbour Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012

Gem Andrews Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012-3.jpg

Gem Andrews Gateshead Central Bar 29 February 2012

March was a relatively quiet month – I was shooting a load of gigs and editing videos. The highlight being  at the end of the month when the summer came to the North East coast and we filmed a live session by Fantasy Rainbow ( I just wish we could have better sound ). We were all blown away by the sheer talent of his performance. All the videos from this session are from one take. Ollie just got out of his car played his songs and left

Some pictures from March

Black Stone Cherry Newcastle Academy 20 March 2012-5110.jpg

Black Stone Cherry Newcastle Academy 20 March 2012

Killing Joke Newcastle Academy 13 March 2012-3.jpg

Killing Joke Newcastle Academy 13 March 2012

Ajimal Newcastle Lit and Phil 19 March 2012-3.jpg

Ajimal Newcastle Lit and Phil 19 March 2012

You Me At Six Newcastle Academy 27 March 2012-6051.jpg

You Me At Six Newcastle Academy 27 March 2012

In April we filmed a gig at historic Morden Tower featuring the mighty Watchers and the Chapman Family. It is great to have had an opportunity to film at a venue that is steeped in history . It was great that two of the best live bands around kept it loud for their sets. I am especially proud that the NME picked up the Watchers video for their powerful song Cut The Ribbon. Looking forward to more great things from them in the coming year.

I also filmed the last song of the night Kids by the Chapman Family

I was also busy with photo shoots with  Nadine Shah, Collectors Club, and The Railway Club

Nadine Shah April 2012

Nadine Shah April 2012

Collectors Club Photo Shoot Newcastle April 2012-3.jpg

Collectors Club Newcastle April 2012

Railway Club Newcastle April 2012

Railway Club Newcastle April 2012

This was also a fun shoot with Darren Hubbard of Distraction Records for Narc magazine. Outside the public toilets on the Bigg Market.

Darren Hubbard Distraction Records Photo Shoot Newcastle February 2012-6.jpg
Some of my live shots from April

The Futureheads Gateshead Sage 8 April 2012-7562.jpg

The Futureheads Gateshead Sage 8 April 2012

Brilliant Mind Newcastle Cluny 6 April 2012-7177.jpg

Brilliant Mind Newcastle Cluny 6 April 2012

The Watchers RPM Courtyard Newcastle Record Store Day 2012-1.jpg

The Watchers RPM Courtyard Newcastle Record Store Day 2012

Architects Newcastle Academy 10 April 2012-8098.jpg

Architects Newcastle Academy 10 April 2012

May started with a trip to London to shoot the Dan Sartain at The Lexington – which was wow. One of my gigs of the year

Dan Sartain The Lexington London 5 May 2012-5.jpg

Dan Sartain The Lexington London 5 May 2012

I made a video for the Greeting Committee single Show Me The Lights of Home. It was a real fun shoot in adverse conditions – it was a rainy bank holiday weekend when we shot the outdoor footage. We all made the most of it and we made a mad video – of which I am immensely proud. We all put a lot of time and effort in planing and making the video on a very limited budget. I should also thank again Dan Horn for teaching me so much during the location shoot – and doing a great job as the man in the cow suit

A promo shot we took during the second day of the location shoot

The Greeting Committee  B-W Location Shoot May 2012-7.jpg

I visited paris at the end of the month and got to see and shoot the mighty Howler – I think the shot below my favourite live shot of 2012

Howler Paris Fleche d'Or 26 May 2012-2.jpg

Howler Paris Fleche d’Or 26 May 2012

Howler Paris Fleche d'Or 26 May 2012-2.jpg
Lucy Rose Communion Festival Hoult's Yard Newcastle 11 May 2012-2.jpg

The first weekend of June was the weekend of Evolution Festival  on the banks of the Tyne  my image of T-E-E-D featured in the NME

T-E-E-D NME June 2012
T-E-E-D NME June 2012

Summer is a perfect time for outdoor location shoots – even in the North East of England.

We turned the inside outside with So What Robot to tie in with their single release Work and Play

So What Robot Newcastle  June 2012

We also got lucky with some early morning sunshine for a shoot with Tusk  who have since signed with local innovative label Tiny Lights

Tusk Promo Shoot June 2012---9.jpg

You would think it was sunny on Tyneside during June – this shot is from a sunny June morning with Gem Andrews. I was also privileged to photograph Gem’s debut album Scatter  cover in 2011

Gem Andrews  Shoot Newcastle  June 2012--2.jpg

I also done a shoot with OFF! – it was such a buzz to be in the company of such legends  – a little nerve-wracking but mainly very exciting

Off!  Newcastle  June 2012--2.jpg

They also took part in my AAA project

Off ! AAA Project

Some Live Shots from June

Off! Newcastle Academy 22 June 2012-4.jpgWilliam Control Newcastle Academy 12 June 2012-1.jpgMaximo Park Newcastle Record Shop Gigs 16 June 2012-3-dw.jpgTyler Hilton Newcastle Academy 14 June 2012-1.jpgMiles Kane Newcastle Evolution Festival 3 June 2012-5.jpgGuitar Wolf  Newcastle Cluny 5 June 2012-13.jpg

July was the month I restarted my Instamatic for the People project of casual portraits of individual musicians taken with an instant print camera. One of my favourite bands Howler

relaunched this project .

Brent Mayes of Howler Stockton 6 July 2012

Brent from Howler, and the rest of the band looking at the Instamatic for the People book

They also were happy to take part in my AAA project – here is the contact sheet

Howler band Portraits

My contact sheet from the shoot with Howler

Copyright David Wala

I also took some shots with Sound of Guns

Sound of Guns Newcastle July 2012

They also took part in my AAA project


I also done another shoot with So What Robot  I love working with these guys – we come up with ideas – then workout how to make it happen. They are always willing to take a risk

So What Robot Newcastle August 2012

Some live shots from July

The Prison Library  Newcastle Cluny 4 July 2012-0491.jpg Howler Stockton Ku Bar 6 July 2012-21.jpgCollectors Club  Newcastle Cult Festival 8 July 2012-3263.jpgThe Fall Newcastle Cult Festival 7 July 2012-2557.jpgThe View Newcastle Academy 10 July 2012-1.jpg

August was a surprisingly busy month with photo shoots and video making, but not so many live gigs to shoot

The first Sunday of August was spent in an Italian Restaurant doing a location shoot of the band Bison Hunting served up on a plate. It was such a fun shoot .  I am so happy that our ideas worked practice as well as in theory here is one:

Bison Hunting August 2012

They also took part in my AAA project

Bison Hunting AAA

I also done a shoot with The Watchers – we done the shoot at sunrise hoping to catch some golden light – but all we caught was some clouds and rain. However that did not stop us and we got some strong images.

The Watchers Northumberland August 2012

So pleased they have taken part in the AAA project

Watchers AAA

For the shoot I did with Retriever – we did get that golden sun we were hoping for

Retriever Newcastle August 2012-004.jpg

They also took part in my AAA project on a different day at their practice room

Retriever Newcastle August 2012
Ollie Catt or Fantasy Rainbow also took part in my AAA project – he liked the images so much that he used them as his press shots and were featured in magazines and on websites



On the same night I took some shots of the Jacuzzi Boys – who were super friendly and definitely wanted to do some interesting shots. I photographed them for my Inatamatic for the People project and took a band portrait which is one of my favourite shots of the year and when  writing four month on they are still using the shot as their Facebook page profile picture

Jacuzzi Boys Newcastle Cluny August 2012

I also done some shots with Franz Nicolay  – the last time I saw him was when he was playing with the Hold Steady.
Franz Nicolay Gateshead Central Bar 24 August 2012-1.jpg

He also took part in my AAA project


I also made two videos in August the first for Sonner for their epic We Go Forth Tonight single – it was great working with them and I hope you like the video we made.

I also made a video with a completely different style and as much fun – super proud of this

Some live shots from August

Tusk Newcastle Tyne Bar 28 August 2012-5.jpgWarm Digits Mariner 9 Spanish City Whitley Bay 11 August 2012-11.jpgSo What Robot Newcastle Cluny 3 August 2012-2.jpg

September was mainly about live gigs and editing videos.

I did take this promo shot of Sonner when we were filming extra footage for their video in early September

Sonner Promo Shot

Some live shots from September

Patti Smith Newcastle Academy 4 September 2012-1.jpgAcrobatic Society Sunderland Plugged Inn 15 September 2012-2.jpgNadine Shah  The Little Room Sunderland  15 September 2012-2.jpgSue Denim Newcastle Academy 8 September 2012-4.jpgThen Jerico Newcastle Academy 20 September 2012-6.jpg

During October I was busy with photographing and filming gigs.

I took this shot for Narc magazine of Fearbox

Fearbox Newcastle October 2012

I took this shot and others from the Soundcheck before The Union Choirs gig at the Lit and Phil in Newcastle.

The Union Choir Soundcheck at The Lit and Phil Newcastle 6 October 2012-11.jpg

Some live shots from October

Gallows Newcastle Academy 8 October 2012-8.jpgHowler Manchester Club Academy 24 October 2012-12.jpgPalma Violets Newcastle ClunyEmergency Room Newcastle Academy 28 October 2012-5.jpgLucy Rose Newcastle Academy 30 October 2012-5680.jpgToy Newcastle Cluny 29 October 2012-2.jpgSpector Newcastle Academy 31 October 2012-6.jpg

November was my busiest month of the year for gigs.

I also managed to do a photo shoot with Hooded Fang

Hooded Fang Newcastle 2012

They also took part in my AAA project

Hooded Fang Contact Sheet

Some of my live shots from November

Steel Panther Newcastle Academy 7 November 2012-1.jpgPenetration Newcastle Cluny 5 November 2012-8.jpgNadine Shah Baltic Gateshead 19 November2012-4.jpgAZ Deathrays Newcastle Think Tank 17 November 2012-2.jpgBen Howard Newcastle Academy 16 November 2012-2.jpgClock Opera Think Tank Newcastle 18 November 2012-4.jpgAriel Pink's Haunted Graffiti Constellations Festival Leed Brudenell 10 November 2012-23.jpgKindness Constellations Festival Leeds Brudenell 10 November 2012-15.jpg
It was great to be busy in the last month of the year – at the time of writing I am still finishing some of the work that I started in December.

I done a brief photo shoot for my AAA project with the Chapman Family


This is a digital shot used to test the lighting ( a modern day Polaroid )

I am also excited by a series of themed portraits that we have done with the super creative Peculiar Disco Moves. Here is one image from the series more will follow in 2013

Peculiar Disco Moves December 2012
I also made a video with The Prison Library of their song Certify which is part of their No Fireworks EP release. It was a challenging shoot as it was in a working studio so we were limited with the space and how we could light the room. However I love the energy of the song and the way that we have captured it.

You can see the video here  

As it was the end of the month it was also the last gig for Sonner . They played a storming set at Plugged Inn in Sunderland. Here is their goodbye picture

Sonner Goodbye Picture

In December Rizzle Kicks were kind enough to stop their sold out gig O2 Academy Newcastle while I changed my memory card and pose for some shots… busted. Super cool guys. I never knew that I could still blush

Rizzle Kicks Newcastle Academy

Some live shots from December

483631_542138585814055_1569668922_nThe xx Newcastle Academy 11 December 2012-6.jpgEnter Shikari Newcastle Academy 9 December 2012-7.jpgNeville Staple Newcastle Academy 23 December 2012-1668.jpg537683_552735641421016_13634335_n

Well that is my year in review – certainly fun, and very proud of my work . Thank you to everyone that has helped me out and worked with me throughout the year.

I am working at something I love doing and I hope I can keep moving forward in 2013


Instamatic for the People 2012 – Pictures Can Speak Louder Than Words

After taking a year way from my ongoing Instamatic for the People project I decided to restart it this week by photographing Howler.I have changed this project to include bands from outside of the North East of England –  I want to make it inclusive as possible. Local writer Linsey Teggart summed up my project in her article for Narc magazine  her article for Narc magazine – this sums up the article. Other information can be found mainly in my 2010 and 2011 posts in this blog.

On Friday while waiting for Howler who were delayed due to mechanical problems – I was wondering if they would have time to do some photographs ( I needn’t have worried they were super cool and very helpful even though they had been on torturous journey on the M1.). To pass some time I flicked through my book from the exhibition and reflected on how much has changed in our local music scene. It is interesting to see how fashions, and locations have changed as well as the people

This picture of Brent below shows rest of Howler engrossed in the book I think sums up their enthusiasm.  As their album America Give Up has been the soundtrack of my year I think it is fitting that they are the first band to be photographed for the relaunch of the project. This has given me a real boost.Brent Mayes of Howler Stockton 6 July 2012

Brent from Howler, and the rest of the band looking at the Instamatic fro the People book

I would also love to photograph all the people from the original book next year as part of this ongoing project.


The book is still available to buy from Blurb books click on the image below – all profits go to Teenage Cancer Trust. It is also available for  iPad  and iPhone as a download


I would once again like to thank everyone that has taken part  and to Howler for being the first people of 2012. I am looking forward to see where this project take us – hopefully to another charity opening and gig.



PS I will be putting up an online gallery soon of all the images as I take them – I have more to add from some amazing people which will be added soon

Framing the Photographs for the Instamatic for the People Exhibition

Things are running to schedule so far, although O am sure there will be some last-minute panic.

This morning I dropped the majority of my photographs with the super talented Mark at – without any prompting he offered to do my framing at cost as my event is for charity – much respect and gratitude – if you believe in good karma it should be coming your way.

Still more people to photograph – I am going to keep photographing until Monday morning so if there are any bands in the North East of England that want to get involved you are all welcome – this project is totally inclusive and democratic

Instax prints ready to frame

Posters and Publicity for Instamatic for the People

Paul Burgess has helped me out with some design work for the forthcoming exhibition – I love the posters that he designed. Could not recommend him more highly. If you get a chance check out Paul Burgess Graphic Design  website

Instamatic for the People Gig Poster

I am also pleased with the article in the May issue of Narc magazine they really understand what this project is about

Narc May 2011 Article

Instamtic for the People Poster

Instamatic for the People Exhibition & Gig

Instamtic for the People Poster

At last ,I am pleased to announce that my Instamatic for the People exhibition will be at The Cluny in Newcastle. There is an opening on Wednesday 25 May between 6pm and 7:30pm with a gig from 8pm in The Cluny. In the spirit of the exhibition everybody is welcome, it is a free concert but there will be collections for Teenage Cancer Trust – please give generously.

The project has been about the musicians of the North East and is a way to document how our music scene is in 2010/2011, I hope to revisit the project in a few years to see how everyone has progressed. It has been interesting looking at the images and seeing the seasons change some pictures in the sunshine at Narc fest in The Ouseburn in July with people in t-shirts and others taken on snowy December night in Sunderland.

This is a totally democratic project where everybody has the same status – all bands are featured equally and all members of the band are featured equally. For the exhibition each image will be drawn at random and displayed in the order they are drawn.

I spend a lot of time at The Cluny and it  is an honour to have an exhibition at the venue where I regularly photograph gigs, and where many of the images from the exhibition were taken.

There will be a book featuring the images from the exhibition available to buy online with all proceeds going to Teenage Cancer Trust.

The opening night gig will feature bands that have taken part in the exhibition

I am so proud that The Greeting Committee, Brilliant Mind, and Gem Andrews have offered to play the gig. They are all acts  that I love and their musical styles are quite different – it will be a fun night.

Simon Donald is someone who I have known for years and it is an honour that he is going to host the night in his own inimitable style. He is a long time supporter of Teenage Cancer Trust.

David Burn from Detroit Social Club is doing a DJ set -I am grateful he has taken time to support this charity event even though Detroit Social Club will be playing at Evolution Festival a few days later.

The line up for the gig is:

The Greeting Committee
Brilliant Mind ( acoustic )
Gem Andrews
and Special Guests

Compere Simon Donald (Viz)
DJ Set by David Burn ( Detroit Social Cub)

This whole project has been entirely self funded and is a labour of love – but I have to thank all the wonderful people who have taken part and encouraged and helped me with it throughout the year.

The exhibition will run throughout June .

There is also a Facebook event

Updates to Published Work and Portraits

I have finally got round to updating the published work section since my last update I have had work published in print, online, and on a CD cover. See my published work  section for all the details.

It was a real honour that Paul Rose selected my photographs for his cover and CD booklet

Paul Rose Ten CD Cover and Disc

 The CD is available to buy from his website and on I tunes.

I have done more portraits lately and my images of  Holy Mammoth featured in the November issue of Narc. We don an outdoor shoot on a cold windy night in The Ouseburn. They were great to work with and appreciate their patience during the shoot especially considering I did not have an assistant on the night. Some of the images are in my Portraits section.

It has been  a long time I am still trying to organise a new website I think I am going to go with Photoshelter and plan to launch it sometime soon – I am lucky that I have been too busy taking photographs to arrange this.

Here is a link to a slide show on my fortcoming site:

Rebellion Festival, NSE Weekender, Portraits, and Published Work

It was so good to be able to photograph at Rebellion Festival. It was an intense day I worked none stop from 1pm until the New York Dolls wrapped up the day at 2 o’clock on Sunday morning – it was intense but so much fun I wouldn’t have it any other way.

It was all things punk including sticks of Blackpool punk rock – I hope to be there next year.

I have put some of the photographs of New York Dolls, Penetration, and UK Subs in their appropriate gallery. I will be uploading images of other bands soon.

The following night I was photographing the National Society For Epilepsy event at Newcastle Cluny. I shot the previous event back in April – it is a fantastic showcase for the leading North East bands but more importantly it is a worthwhile cause. The Sunday night was headlined by Ever Since The lake Caught Fire who delivered a short sharp set and left the crowd wanting more. The images are in the National Society For Epilepsy gallery

Ever Since The lake Caught Fire National Society For Epilepsy Weekender Newcastle Cluny 8 August

I done a photo shoot with Union Choir for Narc magazine which proved to be fun. It was outdoors on a typical rainy summer’s evening in South Shields. The first location had to be abandoned because of too many chavs hanging around the bandstand. We then ended up in another nearby park.

The band were really co-operative and it was easy to work with them they seemed on the whole to be relaxed in front of the camera – I was expecting five members but there was actually eight. Overall I am pleased with the shots and have put some of them in the Portrait Gallery. Check out the band at the Union Choir Myspace.

I have also updated my published work section including recent shots of Carl Barat, Adam, Green, and Jesse Malin. I am also pleased that The Doors Alive are using my photographs from Newcastle Academy from back in January to promote their forthcoming tour. I also please to see my Evolution images used by Culture Deluxe magazine

My photographs from Evolution Festival published by Culture Deluxe Magazine

The Doors Alive advertisement NME 14 August 2010

My Instax For The people has gone quiet this month I have added a few images to the gallery but I need more people so if you see me with my Instax camera you know I could be looking for you to participate in my project.