VANS WARPED TOUR 2015 // DALLAS TO LONG ISLAND

Last summer, I had the opportunity to hop out with the guys in I Killed the Prom Queen for a couple of weeks, going from Dallas to Long Island, NY (and then flying up to Chicago for just one more weekend with the crew). Warped is definitely a different animal compared to the run I did in the winter. But I loved it, as hectic as everything was, it's so rad to be able to see so many bands every single day. Plus, shooting in daylight every day really opens up the opportunity to shoot more film. It's also definitely a challenge trying to create different looks and new framing when most days, you're shooting on the same stages in super similar light. Then again, there are also days like Nashville where a midmorning storm turns the area in front of the stage into a massive mud pit.

When I was 16 and going to Warped for the first time, I never would have guessed I'd be spending two weeks of my summer ten years later out on the road with friends on the tour. It wound up being a damn amazing experience, and one I hope to be able to repeat again soon.

dallas stars // 2014-15 // hockey

Sometimes things don't go how we plan from the start. I remember last fall thinking how there was a genuine possibility of seeing the boys in Victory Green playing (at the time of this writing) right now, facing the Hawks, or Blues, or Ducks, or Kings, fighting for their shot at their first Stanley Cup in more than 15 years, their second in franchise history. But it didn't quite shake out the way we had all thought, or at the very least hoped, it would. A heartbreaking home opener against Chicago, an apparent lack of defensive accountability for much of the early going mixed with high power offense that eventually waned into more defensive accountability but drastically slowed offensive production. Injuries and surgeries; Val Nichushkin's early hip surgery after a sluggish start, Tyler Seguin's knee following a dirty hit against Florida, Trevor Daley's knee just a few games after that, and then, at the end of it all, hearing that the captain, Jamie Benn, would be having surgery on both hips during the off season, as well as Daley and Hemsky also having similar surgeries on individual hips. The picture that had been saddening just days before as you prepared your bracket and had to play the game of "which team do I hate the least of these 16," and thinking how many more years will I be filling brackets out this way instead of blindly playing homer and putting the Stars right there in the middle of it, bringing another cup to Dallas, to seeing how close that picture was to being fulfilled by a team that was so close while playing with star players (pardon the pun) injured, others who were on the brink of setting personal records sidelined by malicious play and injuries, and rookies that had previously never had a real taste of regular season NHL hockey. I'm definitely filled with hope as I start counting down the days until October. When I can start making those frequent trips to the American Airline Center, grabbing some popcorn, maybe a pizza, and watching these players give it all, night after night, on their quest for The Cup.

Is it October, yet? 

SBSW8 // Dallas

A couple of months ago I had the pleasure of photographing South by So What?! for the second time in two years and to photograph some of my favorite bands that I've never had a chance to shoot before, as well as make some new favorites. Even through some tough weather on Friday and Saturday, with pretty consistent rain coming down both days, the bands put on unreal shows, from Circa Survive and La Dispute, to Vanna, Capsize, Harms Way, Unity, Lydia...Frank Iero...and more. There were a lot. And it was an amazing experience, even if I did spend two days soaking wet and trying to keep my cameras moderately dry.

So yeah, I took some photos, some on film, some digital, all of the live and behind the scenes photos are here in the beginning, with all of the portraits at the tail end of the post.

saosin // dallas & austin

Seven Years. Pretty rad coincidence that one of, if not the, most popular songs written by Saosin when Anthony was still singing in the band is also the number of years it had been since I had seen them perform (with Cove singing, of course). When I saw these dates coming through Texas, I was pumped. After seeing the dates on the coasts previously and wanting so badly to be able to make the trip out to see them but not being able to, and then getting to see them just a couple of miles from my house with a last minute confirmation. It  was pretty rad. The set list was everything you'd expect it to be; Translating the Name EP, all of it, including Seven Years as an encore, plus Mookie's Last Christmas and a few rad new songs the band was giving a go made for an awesome hour of music, taking me back to late high-school and early college years when all that mattered was going to shows, singing along, losing our voices, and dreaming of what the future holds. Music is pretty cool like that - transporting you back seven, eight, nine, ten years in a heart beat, feeling like you did the first time you heard these songs.

It gets cooler when, after the show and posting up a photograph on Instagram, you see a message from a friend who happens to be in town in the next city (Austin) saying you should come down and shoot the show again. So Jordan and I loaded up in the Mazda with a few more rolls of film and trekked down I-35 to catch Saosin once more, this time at Emo's. The set list was practically the same but I didn't care. I'd been waiting years to see these songs performed that I was more than happy to see and shoot the set again. It was another awesome night, wrapped up with a slice of pizza from Homeslice with Jordan and John (who had suggested we come down) and a long return trek home up 35 in the middle of the night. A long day, to say the least, but these are the things we do for music, and these sort of experiences. I wouldn't give that weekend back for the world.

Enjoy the photos, let me know what you think, how music has effected you, you know, cool shit.

And, if anyone is curious what these photos were photographed with/on: a Pentax 67 with a 105mm f/2.4 lens, a 5D with a 50 mm lens, and a Leica M4-P with a 35 mm lens. Films were Ilford 3200, Tri-X, and Portra 400.