Slam Dunk Festival 2016 // The 10 Year Anniversary

So after working my full time job, to helping set up the SDF pre party, to Leeds, to Birmingham, to Hatfield and then back to Leeds as you can imagine I was pretty knackered and since I’m almost recovered from working Slam Dunk Festival, I thought I’d write a little post about it. And when I say almost, I should just say I’m never going to recover it seems as things have been so busy since but lucozade zero exists now so I’m surviving on that.

Every year since I was 14 years old, I have gone to Slam Dunk Festival. I missed the first one unfortunately as I did not know anyone going but it was my dream line up and I’m still sad about it to this day. Since the age of 18 I have worked at Slam Dunk Festival, and for the past 5 years I have worked FOR Slam Dunk Festival which has just been such a dream come true. When I was a kid I always dreamed of photographing bands, and there was 5 bands I adored and never thought in a million years I’d get to photograph them, they were:

  • Paramore
  • Fall Out Boy
  • Taking Back Sunday
  • Panic! At The Disco
  • You Me At Six

And to my surprise, I have already managed to tick off 4 out of the 5. I’m not sure if I will ever get to photograph Paramore and if I do I do not even know if my photos will be any good due to the amount of tears that will be shed. Heres a few pictures from it:

 

Non of this would be possible if it was not for Slam Dunk, if it was not for Looci and JD believing in me and my photography. And of course Ben for giving me a chance.

I’ve been lucky enough to see this festival grow from being at the university in Leeds, to have three dates in three different locations with some of the biggest bands and even more lucky to be able to be part of the Slam Dunk family for the last five. Everyone working on the festival is a close nit little team that put there hearts and souls into making the festival what is is on the day and I’m so proud to be part of it. They welcomed me with open arms, looked after me when I was getting used to the hard work and are the best travelling buddies I could ask for.

And now we’ve had our ten year anniversary, the best one yet. We had PANIC AT THE DISCO headlining, with pyro in his set and confetti cannons in Birmingham and it was such a dream. We put the festival on in Birmingham NEC for the first time too which blew my mind, arriving there on Sunday morning to see it all was insane and I couldn’t quite believe that it was the festival I work for doing such a cool thing. We had thousands and thousands of people attending, big parties from the UPRAWR boys and this year the merch was insane (well done Tom!)

I’ll add a few photos I got this year, but my main job this year was filming to create some videos to support the festival. I worked with my video pal Adam on creating end of the day videos which you can see on our facebook page here.

My incredible friend Tom helped us work towards what we achieved, pushed us at our lowest and most hungry points to make sure what we did was incredible and I’m forever grateful for what you have done for me and putting up with my moaning.

We made the best team, and what we achieved between the three of us I am so proud of. It was great to be able to show how the festival has grown and how big its got. Even though we did not win Best Festival again at Kerrang awards, in my eyes and undoubtably many more eyes we still are. Nothing beats the friendly atmosphere we create, the range of bands and that fact we’ve managed to create one huge pop punk family, where you can go have an incredible time with your friends and make new ones in the process.

Nothing will ever beat working for this festival, it brings me such joy every year and I feel truly blessed to be a part of it. I get to work with my favourite bands, with some of my best friends and some of my favourite human beings in the world while we travel from north to south doing what I love, how could I ever ask for more?!

BIG love to all the family that worked on SDF16, thank you for the laughs, hugs and love you have always given me and heres to many more years.

Every summer, forever xoxo

 

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