Celtic Connections 2016

Photographing a culture in the here and now often means photographing the intersection of the present with the past.
— David DuChemin

It has been some time since I last posted a blog to this site as life does always have that habit of getting in the way. Nevertheless, coming to the end of the Celtic Connections festival does seem to provide the golden opportunity, if not obligation, to post something - some reflections of the past 2 1/2 weeks of music.

Kris Kristofferson at Roaming Roots Revue

I have also got in the habit in these posts of starting with a quote, a bit of inspiration to get the creative juices flowing. This quote from humanitarian, nature and adventure photographer, David DuChemin would seem appropriate. Certainly the last few weeks have been somewhat of an adventure, and a bit of a voyage of discovery of artists and bands I had not seen or even heard of before as well as some who are burned into the consciousness of music lovers everywhere. The quote does also seem to capture the essence of what Celtic Connections is about for me, a coming together of the present with the past, an acknowledgement of where we have come from and also a positive look towards the future of our traditions. Culture is not a static thing. It is ever growing and evolving. As a photographer you are really just capturing a snapshot of that but one that hopefully will help us to reflect on our experiences.

Robert Plant at the final concert

Over the course of the Festival I photographed 29 events, taking over 6000 photos and I can honestly say that I enjoyed every minute of it. None of it would be possible without the support of all the staff and volunteers at Celtic Connections and, in particular, Brian and Mikaela who were responsible for running the media office and putting up with all the endless requests and pleadings from the journalists, photographers and film crews who were seeking access to each event. Thank you both. Thank you also to Living Tradition Magazine who commissioned me for the festival. I look forward to seeing some of these photos appearing in the magazine over the months ahead. I also had the surprise opportunity to perform at the festival on the Main Stage for one of the schools concerts that the festival puts on each year for school children from across Glasgow and the surrounding area to come and experience a live gig. Performing in front of 1800 enthusiastic school kids with a dear friend of mine as well as musical hero, Tim Edey was something that I will never forget.

You can see all of my published photos from the Festival (don't worry, there are not 6000 of them!) on my Facebook page. Here though are just a few of them from across the festival. As ever, it would be great to get your feedback.

Should you wish to get a copy of any of my photos they are all available as prints or on license for media outlets or promotional activity. Similarly, if you like what you see and would like me to take some photos of a gig you have coming up or some promo shots for your band then do please get in touch.