Subculture Live at B-Side

My buddies in the band Subculture played a Sepultura tribute show at B-Side and I tagged along, quite happy that I would finally have a chance to shoot a band with my Fujifilm X-T2. When I arrived there, I saw the bands were setting up to play in an area that had zero lighting – just the ambient lighting from the surrounding bars and the almost-full moon above. But I was there, I had the camera with me, I bit my lip and got on with it. Everything was shot with the Fujifilm XF 23mm F2.0 lens, most shots were at ISO 10,000.

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New Photo Gallery – Jeff Beck in Hong Kong 2010

I’ve added a photo gallery of my pictures of Jeff Beck, who appeared in Hong Kong at Asiaworld on March 22, 2010. The shot above is my current favorite from the batch.

As I mentioned earlier, as I’m allowing Spike’s Photos to wind down, I’m going to be adding photo galleries here. Rather than just copying over the photos from seven years ago, I’ve gone back into Lightroom and “remastered” them. Lightroom is a much better program and I’m much better with it than seven years ago.

The band included the great Narada Michael Walden on drums, Rhonda Smith on bass and Jason Rebello on keyboards.

While I’ve seen Beck live many times, stretching back to 1974 or 1975, this was his first time playing a concert in Hong Kong. And it was my first time having a “3 songs, no flash” pass for a major concert in Hong Kong. I’m really thrilled with how well these shots turned out (although when I go back to them now and see the settings I used, I’m amazed that they came out as well as they did).

I did get a little bit punch drunk while re-processing the photos, pushing things a bit to see just what I could do with them. They’re not in the gallery but I’ll show a few of them to you here.


I’m undecided about the results – they’re either artistic and unique or they’re goofy as fuck. You tell me.

Manila – OPM Against Drugs Festival Photo – Photo Gallery

I’m now going to be adding Photo Galleries here (rather than on Spike’s Photos). You can see there’s now a Photo Galleries item on the top menu. I might add in some of the older galleries soon.

I’m kicking this off with a gallery of what I think are my best shots from the OPM Against Drugs Festival held in Manila on January 14, 2017.  Here’s a few sample shots:

Click here to see the full gallery!



Manila – OPM Against Drugs Festival Photos Part 1

January 14, 2017 – 100 bands, 5 stages for the OPM (Original Pilipino Music) Against Drugs Festival produced by Rakrakan. The 5 themed stages were Move, Indie, Groove, Mosh and Slam. (I won’t comment on the “Against Drugs” bit.)

My friends Tribo Subculture were one of the bands appearing on the Slam stage and they arranged an all-access pass for me.  The festival kicked off around noon but I didn’t get there until around 10 PM or so, which gave me time to shoot some of the bands, wander around the crowd a bit, get some food, gaze at the “merch”, and of course enjoy the music that I heard.

I’m told that last year they had 24,000 people there and this year it was up to 35,000. Well, advance ticket prices were just P500 (that’s around US$10) and draft Red Horse Beer was just P50, so why wouldn’t you go if you could? The crowd was remarkably peaceful and friendly and I thought it was a great event.

I’m still working my way through the photos I shot but here are some of my favorites so far:

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Dutdutan XV Philippines Tattoo Expo

It’s been awhile since I’ve really shot anything. So it felt good to get out this weekend with a bag of gear over my shoulder, fighting my way through the Manila traffic to reach the World Trade Center in Pasay on September 26th to spend a few hours shooing at Dutdutan XV Philippines Tattoo Expo. This was a huge (and very well run) event, easily 2 or 3 times larger than the Hong Kong Tattoo Convention that I shot last year. Unfortunately I couldn’t stick around long enough to see Maria Ozawa, but I did see a lot of talented artists at work, heard a couple of good bands, watched a skateboarding competition and saw quite a few lovely ladies in attendance. Here are just a few of my favorite shots from the day:





See these full-sized – and a whole lot more images – at the Dutdutan XV gallery page over at Spike’s Photos.

Coming Soon – Dutdutan XV – Tattoo Convention in Manila

I have ten tattoos. Many of them were done by the legendary Jimmy Wong in Bangkok, some by his almost-equally-talented daughter Joy. If I ever finish my Bangkok trip post, you’ll read all about how Jimmy was so happy to see me last month (after us being out of touch for roughly seven years) that he insisted on giving me a new tattoo as a present (and how could I say no?).  I can’t begin to tell you how touched I was by this.


(Left to right – me, Joy Wong, Jimmy Wong)

Jimmy also insisted that once back in Manila, I should get in touch with a friend of his, Ricky Sta. Ana – judging by his Facebook page he is one of the most respected tattoo artists in town. I got in touch with Ricky, who told me about this upcoming convention in Manila, Dutdutan XV. “The nation’s biggest and grandest tattoo exposition.”


Remembering how I had such a blast shooting the Hong Kong International Tattoo Convention last year, I asked Ricky if it would be possible for me to come and shoot this, and luckily he agreed.

This appears to be a much bigger event than the one I attended in Hong Kong. Their Facebook page has 213,000 likes – not too shabby. Their website lists well over 100 attending artists, from all over the globe. There will be live music – including the Von Dutch Shred Fest (guitarmageddon, the web site promises). Oh, and Maria Ozawa will be there.



In other words, it’s safe to say that a good time will be had by all – including me.

So this will be taking place September 25th & 26th at the World Trade Center Metro Manila from noon to 2 AM each day. Tickets are only 500 pesos.

I’m sure this is going to be a helluva lotta fun and I’m really looking forward to it.