Category: Art

Reading And Leeds Preview 2015

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Festivals can be the best opportunities to see bands you never thought you’d see – or discover bands you may never have given a chance. To help you out for Reading and Leeds festivals, we’ve come up with a list of bands who are about to make your weekend. And be sure to keep an eye out for our music writer Amber Carnegie who will be street spotting for our style pages. 

Beartooth

If you haven’t caught them on tour in the past year or heard them on the radio, this weekend is your chance to catch Beartooth. They’ll have you dancing around with some of their massive choruses so give them a go. Believe us, we still have dents in our shoes from the last time we saw them.

The Maccabees

We all know and love The Maccabees but with ‘Marks To Prove It’ only released last month this could be one of the first chances you get to hear those new tracks live.

Black Honey

The mysterious identities behind the band that is Black Honey have always let their music speak for themselves. Let them do that and get lost in their seductive pop this weekend.

Queen Kwong

‘Get A Witness’ is the title track of Queen Kwong’s album due out this month. With a renowned live show it will incredible to witness how this transfers to the festival stage.

Alexisonfire

We never thought we’d see Alexisonfire again so of course we’re all on some sort of pilgrimage to witness what could be a rare occurrence.

Echosmith

With an incredible array of influences coming through their tracks, Echosmith are undoubtably ones to watch at Reading and Leeds. They have this sweet pop feel with all the hazy undertones you can get lose yourself in.

And So I Watch You From Afar

If you’ve never given instrumental music a chance before this is the time to embrace it. And So I Watch You From Afar will not only blow your mind but their group vocals will have you singing your heart out at the pinnacle of their set.

To help you make it through the weekend check out our Festival Tips and download the Reading and Leeds Festival app for the best updates over the weekend.

 

Dina Litovsky: Under the Needle

Brooklyn based photographer Dina Litovsky has created a series called Under the Needle, in which she captures the serene and painful moments of people being tattooed. The photographs were taken earlier this year at both the Empire State Tattoo Expo and the New York City Tattoo Convention.

 

Hevy Festival Diary 2015

Regarded as one of the best small festivals in the UK, Hevy Fest has come back better than ever from its 2013 cancellation. After a smaller but incredible affair in 2014 check out what happened when our music writer Amber Carnegie descended on Port Lympne for the diverse line up they whipped up for 2015. 

Thursday 14th of August

Shortly after arriving at Hevy, we soon realised that not only had we brought the wrong tent but that Camp Things & Ink was held together with worn out bamboo, wasn’t entirely waterproof and wouldn’t be around for long.

A fact we learned pretty quickly as the weekend started with some expected thunder and lightening. Lucky for us our lovely neighbours let us throw our belongings into their tents while we helped other drenched campers set up. We then escaped into the larger tents for a good wringing out.

Once we began to resemble ourselves again we headed into the arena to catch the rest of the acoustic stage. Sam Duckworth and Dave McPherson both incited sing-alongs to those who had survived the rain but it was the acoustic set from Jamie Lenman that nearly had us in tears. Reminiscent Reuben tracks like ‘Moving To Blackwater’ and ‘Let’s Stop Hanging Out’ really hit the tone for all of those brought to Hevy this year. Dave McPherson also came back out to join Lenman for ‘I Ain’t Your Boy’ that brought together the camaraderie that you cannot miss at Hevy.

Friday 15th of August

Luke keeping up the caffeine at Hevy

After we assessed Thursday’s damage and sought out breakfast we ventured into the Port Lympne Wild Animal Park. A portion of each ticket sold for Hevy goes towards The Aspinall Foundation, to help protect endangered species, and where possible return them back to the wild. With little else to do before the bands start in the afternoon it’s amazing that you are able to wonder around the park free of charge. You can also pick up an actual meal or even some Kentish Cider if you fancy it.

If that didn’t wake you up, Continents had the task of kicking off the festival from the Main Stage. Despite pretty much baking in the arena the sounds of their upcoming album got people moving and early tracks like ‘Pegasus Pegasus’ began decimating the grass in front of the stage.  There is always a place at Hevy for instrumental, post rock bands and Chon certainly proved why. Chon bring movements between the stages to a stand still with riffs that mirror vocal chords in incredible succession. Closing with ‘Perfect Pillow’ with a guitar sequence that will be riddled in your brain for weeks. We highly recommend you check them out.

Even if you’re not into it, Hacktivist certainly got the Hevy party going. If they didn’t have you with ‘Djent In Paris’ then they had us in crowd peer pressure of waving hands to ‘False Idols’. We didn’t know the words but we soon picked them up before we headed to the Third Stage where Heck were destined to make us double check we all still had our limbs. What we were not expecting is the band formally known as Baby Godzilla to induce a stage wide floorshow with the audience as props. Tracks we’d never heard before had the crowd in a frenzy and if you didn’t feel the need to sing along, you’re probably broken inside.

Heck @ Hevy

Heck At Hevy

We headed back to the Main Stage for Touché Amore for a completely different feel, the band brought this closer environment as the crowd reached over desperate to shout lyrics. This amazing wave of post-hardcore has this insane ability to unify emotions that were once overlooked or hidden. To have witnessed this at Hevy within a crowd all clearly in touch with every word was striking and completely epitomises Hevy and the love and respect everyone has for the music and its abilities there.

Once we’d all pulled ourselves back together and the iconic intro to ‘Bloodmeat’ kicked in we knew we were in the midst of Protest The Hero. Wilding riffs and lungs you will never quite believe from Rody Walker. With his renowned anecdotes dropping momentum it allowed us a chance to breathe before winding back up into techy sequences and guitars that lick through ‘Clarity’ to see the blur in front of the stage give it one last go.

The Dillinger Escape Plan then called out the sunset with the most unnatural spasms their bodies could muster with ‘Prancer’ opening up the set and the ground. ‘Milk Lizard’s grooving rhythms had us more inclined to dance than to thrash about as the band seemed more and more determined fracture themselves. Although we’ve come to expect this self inflected battering while remaining indefinably tight it’s exceptional to witness every time.

The Dillinger Escape Plan @ Hevy

The Dillinger Escape Plan At Hevy

The iconic opening riff to ‘43% Burnt’ ensued madness immediately and carried through to ‘Panasonic Youth’. The crowd completely lost their shit when vocalist Greg Puciato dove into the crowd for ‘Farewell Mona Lisa’ only to immerse back on stage as bodies flung for ‘When I Lost My Bet’. With no time we legged it over to catch the end of Fightstar’s delayed set, seven strings and all. With a feral tent that proved that Fightstar could have headlined a bigger stage they tore out their new track ‘Animal’ with a new synth sound before nailing out titans tracks like ‘Deathcar’ and their first single ‘Palahniuk’s Laughter’. As we held each other up in the swarming stage it was so reminiscent of our swinging emo fringe days that we couldn’t thank Hevy enough for putting something so awesome together.

Coheed And Cambria closed Friday’s live music by playing ‘In Keeping Secrets Of Silent Earth: 3’ in its entirety. Coheed are incomparable, the album a spectacle in itself and it didn’t stop with the album. The encore saw their latest track ‘You’ve Got Spirit Kid’ carry away the audience as the eminent ‘Welcome Home’ took over Port Lympne to show that Hevy is well and truly back.

Saturday 15th of August

Despite some technical hitches the crowd spurred Milk Teeth in some of the freshest sounds that hit Hevy. Their grunge punk rock is something not to be missed and we can’t wait to see them live again. We were then allured into a doomy tent where Hang The Bastard had incited the slugging, aching head-bangs through layers of smoke. And then as if our eyes were deceiving us (they weren’t) a fluorescent pink two piece with a triangle found its way around the Second Stage for HORSE The Band.

HORSE The Band @ Hevy

HORSE The Band at Hevy

If you had never had the pleasuring of witnessing these guys before Hevy you were certainly in for a treat. Their sweet set of insanity blew Saturday up only to be followed by The Fall Of Troy on Main Stage. They were the second band of the weekend to play an album in full so when ‘Doppelganger’ kicked off we knew were in for unchartered territory. Within the first track they were a band we regretted never getting into. Impeccable guitar work with catchy rhythms had  us all dancing. For an album played on its ten year anniversary The Fall Of Troy not only kept everything so incredibly tight but probably gained a lot of fans who wished they tuned in a long time ago.

The Get Up Kids then followed in full album suit, and although it was now getting slightly tiring it is amazing to see so many albums still have the ability to pull in such crowds. ‘Something To Write Home About’ saw people singing word for word with ‘I’ll Catch You’ holding a quiet moment over the main stage as the album closed.

Thrice At Hevy

Thrice at Hevy

Headliners Thrice come together like they have never been away. Every track fell into the next and just the intro to ‘Of Dust And Nations’ sparked frenzy. With a varied set list that saw ‘The Artist In The Ambulance’ and ‘Deadbolt’ take off as if it was the early 00’s again the entire campsite was gathered around the Main Stage.

As they closed on 2011’s ‘Anthology’ we couldn’t quite believe that it was over for another year. Hevy have brought us bands in their revival that we could have never expected, what’s for 2016 Hevy?

Did you go to Hevy Fest? What did you think?

When Tattoo Culture and Fashion Collide

Our guest blogger is Jade-Bailey Dowling, fashion writer and creator of Nouvelle Noir, a blog dedicated to dark fashion. In this post she explores tattoos in the world of fashion… 

Fashion and tattoo art appear to have very little in common . While fashion is fleeting by its very nature – trends change twice a year – tattoos are a life-long commitment. Yes, there are, of course, “trends” in tattooing (take the tribal mania of the ’90s, or the current love of the mandala), but when deciding to get tattooed, you put far more thought into it than which new season shoes to purchase.

However, fashion has repeatedly looked towards the tattoo community to gain inspiration for their own craft.

Vogue

Designer Jean Paul Gaultier has repeatedly drawn inspiration from body art in his designs. His signature style originated from nautical influence, and this too included the body art and tattoos sported by sailors. While the Breton stripe was prominent in his early work, traditional Japanese style patterns were seen in the Spring/Summer 2012 collection – printed on women’s shoes and handbags, as well as earlier in the Gaultier menswear. His tattoo infatuation was enhanced further when designing the Diet Coke bottles (also in 2012), a campaign that saw Gaultier cover model Daisy Lowe in temporary body art to promote the collection.

Coca Cola

And Jean Paul Gaultier is not alone in bringing tattoo art to haute couture. In 2012, Karl Lagerfeld, creative director of Chanel, sent models down the catwalk covered in Chanel-esque temporary tattoos. Designs included pearls, the brands signature interlocking Cs and brands namesake and creator, Coco Chanel’s favourite flower, a camellia. They had been designed by the brand’s former make-up director Peter Philips, and at £45 a sheet, fashionistas could get the tattoo trend without the commitment of a lifelong addition.

Chanel

This seeming ‘tattoo trend’ looks to continue into Spring/Summer ’16, McQueen has designed a new take on the brand’s signature skull scarf to incorporate traditional flash style artwork alongside it. At £95, tattoo flash sheets become wearable in these silk scarves.

Alexander McQueen

Kate Moss is noted for having a small swallow tattoo on her wrist, but previously models, in particular female models, were discouraged from having large, visable tattoos in the fear of hindering their careers. This seems to be changing gradually, with the likes of Cara Delevingne proudly showing off her many visable artworks, including a lion on her finger. Also, at the Met Gala this year – a yearly fashion event held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art by U.S Vogue editor Anna Wintour – Cara Delevingne decorated herself with cherry blossom airbrushed body art, done by New York tattoo artist Bang Bang, in keeping with the theme of Chinese Whispers: Through the Looking Glass.

W Magazine

More recently, cult shoe brand Dr Martens looked towards tattoo artistry for inspiration. Their Spring/Summer 2015 collection included shoes, satchels and dresses adorned with traditional style tattoo patterns. Similarly, for Brighton Pride 2015, Dr Martens teamed up with tattoo artists from the local area to come together for a charity raffle with prizes including shoes and bags custom decorated by local tattoo artists.

Dr Martens

Tattoos and fashion have collided in a more permanent way (forget the temporary tats) on the high street too… A few years ago, consumers could not only get their fashion fix, but they could also get a tattoo in the Metal Morphosis studio in Topshop’s flag ship store in Oxford Circus. And last year, legendary department store Selfridges had a pop-up tattoo parlour for two weeks.

Although it’s great that body art and tattoos are seemingly being more accepted into society, especially within fashion, taking inspiration from the late Yves Saint Laurent quote, perhaps trend seekers should remember that fashions fade, while tattoos are eternal.

Dark touches of surrealism… the art of Alexandra Manukyan

We can’t resist the work of Artist Alexandra Manukyan, with dark touches of surrealism it could make perfect tattoo inspiration too… 

‘Forest Awakening’, 36”x18”, oil on canvas ‘Forest Awakening’, 36”x18”, oil on canvas

 

‘Wastelands of Lament’, 40”x30”, oil on Belgian linen ‘Wastelands of Lament’, 40”x30”, oil on Belgian linen

 

“The central theme that unites all my paintings examines how seemingly separate and isolated life experiences actually disguise the extent of our individual and communal bonds,” says Alexandra Manukyan of her work. “The ‘masks’ and the accompanying identities we all assume depending on the life role we must play, obstructs the conscious mind from acknowledging what truly unites us through the isolation and chaos: our shared encounters of pain, loss, desire, and longing for serenity and acceptance. The false facades we all manufacture to adapt and belong also renders most blind and lost in a world where the meaningless has somehow become meaningful and the idea of a shared honest self devoid of hidden agendas all too infrequent.”

 

'In the Absence of All', 18x36 in, oil on canvas

‘In the Absence of All’, 18″x36″, oil on canvas

Miniature Ink II

Miniature Ink II kewpie by Jondix sneak peek

ATOMICA GALLERY AND THINGS&INK MAGAZINE PRESENT:
‘MINIATURE INK II’
OPENING NIGHT: WEDNESDAY 23rd SEPTEMBER 2015

Atomica Gallery and Things&Ink magazine are delighted to announce Miniature Ink II, the second exhibition featuring miniature original artworks from over 100 of the world’s leading tattoo artists.

Join us for the opening reception on Wednesday 23rd September (exact location to be revealed soon) with complimentary drinks kindly provided by Sailor Jerry.

Rsvp@atomicagallery.com, or attend our Facebook event.

There will be no preview list of artworks, first come first served!

MORE INFORMATION AND ARTISTS TO BE ANNOUNCED SOON…

Have a look at last year’s celebrity and cocktail filled Miniature Ink opening night.

Keep an eye on the #MinitaureInk and #MiniatureInkII hashtags for more kewpie capers.

Check out what some of the artists have been up to on Instagram…

@iris_lys

ir

@lalhardy

lah@sadeeglover

gl

 Top image by James Stittle

SebastianKlimek

The Brute Style of Sebastian Klimek

In Issue 11 (The Fruity Issue), writer and philosopher Kimberly Baltzer-Jaray wrote a piece titled Stay Real. Keep Simple. Live in the now. Ignorant Style where she discussed the importance of the “shits and giggles” tattoo and interviewed French graffiti artist turned tattooist, FUZI. Along with that article we included some beautiful photographs, some of these were taken by FUZI and some were created by a talented friend of Kimberly’s, Sebastian Klimek, on the day FUZI tattooed JOnas in NYC… Kimberly explores more below…

Sebastian and FUZI share some similarities in that both are self-taught artists; both find inspiration in the streets and with the everyday people walking them; both like to break rules and do not identify with any set style, but rather create their own. In this way, they are more avant-garde or ‘anti-art’ like the 20th century Dadaists were. Sebastian’s photographs are rather eclectic and even at times a bit chaotic in subject matter, technique or distortion, and thus he describes them as ‘Brute style’. In fact, he doesn’t think of himself as an artist at all: “I don’t consider myself an artist. I don’t want to take nice photographs, but rather I want to capture interesting content. I dislike mainstream or commercial photography. You could say photography itself guides and rules my ass. I experiment a lot with different mediums, digital tools. I draw with my camera; I prefer to say that I created the images or made the photograph rather than shot or took.” As to influences on his photography, he only mentions loving the work of Daido Moriyama and Japanese aesthetics in general.

As a photographer Sebastian is very spontaneous, he tries not to think too much when he shoots since “thinking too much causes conflicts.” He’s also quite ethical in that he refuses to photograph homeless people or beggars because “it’s being a vulture for a cheap shot.”

For Sebastian, photography and creating images is a self-therapy for pain, specifically social anxiety disorder (SAD). Photography is a form of interacting with people that is without verbal content, it is a way to be part of the social situation without the pressures of conversation and proximity, and thus it his a way to cope with and overcome SAD. Capturing people on the street through his lens and images is a way of communicating at a comfortable distance, silently, and in many ways without judgment. Sebastian says, “Basically, I’m waging a war against social anxiety disorder, which has been torturing me since my teenage years. People think I’m quiet or even shy, but that’s not true. I’m pretty fuck’n loud, but I get choked when I need my communication and photography skills the most. I fear embarrassing myself, which is the biggest issue with SAD. But if you keep yourself in the shadow of a disorder, it’ll eat you and ruin your life, and you’ll end up institutionalized. Capturing people on the streets is a way for me to overcome and heal. So, there is a very deeply personal and meaningful subject for my photographs.”

It is here we see that his photography very much fits with his life philosophy when he adds, “They [his photographs] are the beginning of something greater.” For Sebastian, any misfortune in life leads to something greater and positive. In other words, setbacks and difficulties are opportunities for bigger, better and greater things.

Sebastian was born in Poland and moved to New Jersey when he was 17. With no formal education, he worked as a construction worker until a serious injury forced him to stop. He currently volunteers at a wonderful art organization known as the Franklin Furnace Archive Inc. in Brooklyn, NY, a place that encourages the creation and preservation of avant-garde art of all forms and is committed to promoting that which is under-represented by mainstream arts institutions due to things like ephemeral nature or politically unpopular content. His volunteer work at the Franklin Furnace is a source of pride, meaningful purpose and joy.

All images © 2015 Sebastian Klimek

Inked Palette

UK tattoo blog Inkluded, is collaborating with Deasil art gallery to present an exhibition featuring work by a selection of UK tattoo artists.

Inked Palette will run from 3 – 20 October 2015 at Deasil Art Gallery, 44 Oxford Street, Leamington Spa. Admission is free. 

The multimedia exhibition will showcase the work of 15 tattoo artists through different mediums. As well as artworks on traditional materials such as canvas and paper, Inked Palette will see artists utilise customary materials and share their sketches and drawings to offer an insight into their creative process. Tattoo photography will form part of the exhibition, and there will also be exciting installations for members of the public to interact with and explore.

Charlotte Timmons, Modern Body Art

Founder of Inkluded, Beccy Rimmer, is interested in showcasing the mastery behind tattoo art:

At Inkluded, we’re passionate about showcasing and sharing the craft of tattoo art and making information about this thriving industry available to those who may be new to it. This country’s creative tattoo scene is fast-growing and flourishing with talented artists, remarkable artwork and innovative styles – we thought it was time we unveiled the creativity and originality of the UK’s tattoo mastery through this exciting exhibition.

 Shaun Williams, Nebula Tattoo

Deasil Art is a new gallery situated in the heart of England, in Leamington Spa, with direct trains to a whole host of major UK cities including Birmingham, Oxford, Manchester, York, London and Reading.

Joanne Baker, Grizzlys Art Tattoo

TATTOO ARTISTS ANNOUNCED SO FAR:

Joanne Baker, Grizzlys Art Tattoo, Coventry
Nicola Cry, Sutton Ink, Birmingham
William Jones, Nebula Tattoo, Burry Port, South Wales
Adam Thomas, Cannock Ink, Cannock
Charlotte Timmons, Modern Body Art, Birmingham
Shaun Von Sleaze, Keep The Faith Social Club, Cardiff
Shaun Williams, Nebula Tattoo, Burry Port, South Wales
Niall Patterson (tattoo photographer), Birmingham

Art Exhibition: Womanstanley 2

Womanstanley 2 is a one-day-only exhibition that celebrates women from the North of England: past, present and future. The brainchild of like-minded artists Sophie New and Roxanne Ball, friends who met at Leeds College of Art and quickly realised that they both wanted to bring the excitement of pop-up, D.I.Y city art exhibitions, to their home.

Womanstanley 2 will take place on 22 August at Warrington Sports Club, Walton Lea Road, Higher Walton, Warrington, Cheshire, WA4 6SJ. The event costs £3. For more information on the event and to RSVP please contact womanstanley@gmail.com

Womanstanley is three years old and so far it has successfully created a platform where creative individuals, living in Warrington and surrounding areas can express themselves, meet like-minded artists and celebrate the talent that is right on the doorstep. It is a space to share creative interests, music and stories with women at the core. Womanstanley started as a legacy to the Women’s Art Revolution and continues to grow as more people become involved, making an exhibition from scratch in a location that is a far cry from a traditional gallery setting.

Investment of Exchange by Sophie New

The exhibitors in Womanstanley 2 have chosen diverse routes, from a royal portrait of Cilla Black by Kim Thackeray, Roxanne Ball’s portrayal of Margery Booth the Wigan ‘Knicker Spy’ to Sarah Harris who gives life to ‘Sylvia the cyst’. A group of five young women from Priestley College who study dance together, join forces to create a piece for camera on Formby Beach.

Work in Progress Cilla Black by Kim Thackeray

Roxanne Ball

Sophie New, a student studying at the Royal College of Art was inspired by an embroidered wedding jacket from Gujarat for one of her core projects. This jacket led her to investigate contemporary ideas surrounding marriage and relationships. Interviews were carried out with the public and she collected personal stories, photographs and embroideries. With this information new images were created and formed fragments of a new piece of clothing, a veil for two people, of any gender, rather than traditionally just for the bride. Sophie New brings this piece from an exhibition at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford and the audience are invited to add their own marriage stories.

Local Warrington town centre group, Dolly’s Sewing School has got involved by making work about the Cockhedge Cotton Mill and members of the Blooming Art group run by exhibiting artist Gail Stubbings are looking into nature / nurture.

Emily Calland

Womanstanley 2 will also see performances from the soulful singer Bella New, ‘industrial estate based four-piece’, Giest, Bathymetry, an Indie band that sound like ‘night time when it’s raining and you’ve forgotten a hat’ and Hello Mabel, a ‘female acoustic twosome featuring members of Roughneck Riot and Fish Bastard.’

On the day there will be drinks available from the lovely bar staff at the Warrington Sports Club and an arts and crafts stall where exhibiting artists will be selling all sorts of items ranging from Rosa Silva’s swimwear, Cat Stroud’s satirical gender identity zine to Michelle Price of Kleinemaus’  handmade pencil cases.

Other artists exhibiting include; Beth Davenport, Cameron Brown, Lotte Anne, Natalie Wardle, Alex Dodgson, Lucy Hurst, Lauren Muir, Alanna Heston, Laura Jane, Rachel Haney, Julia Pantkowska, Saffa Khan Isobel Harrop Liz Hough, Tilly Dagnall, Karly McCaig, Becca Hunter, Mary Dickinson, John Dickinson, Jim Williamson, Gordon Firth, Rebecca Smith, Claire Hill, Melpomene, Abbi Hughes and last but not least Womanstanley’s Social media specialist Hayley Reid.

Womanstanley 2 poster, by Emily Calland

Festival Tips

Our music writer Amber Carnegie gives you her top tips for surviving festival season… alongside photos from her own festivalling experiences… 

So when it comes to festival essentials, you’ve probably already got the tent down – and hopefully your ticket – but what about those added extras that could stop you making those fatal festival virgin errors? Read on, so you don’t end up stranded, hungover and soaking this summer…

Groezrock at sunset

Keep Those Toes Dry (and safe)

If you’re festivalling in the UK, you should never expect sun for the entire festival. You can wear wellies to keep those toes dry, but to keep them warm and safe when in a mosh pit you should really invest in a pair of Dr Martens. When you’re jumping around a field and everyone else is basically wearing  rubber socks, your toes will be toasty… you’ll have made every single penny spent on those DMs back.

Keep Connected (that doesn’t always mean an Insta selfie)

If you still have your good old brick phone, I suggest taking that with you to use – it shouldn’t need charging the whole time you’re there (remember the days of phones lasting three days on one charge?!). But if you’re uber-trendy and like to use social media to organise your whereabouts, invest in a portable charger. Although most festivals have power banks to charge up, this is a quicker cheaper version that you can carry in your handbag… You can pick them up online for under a fiver and they let you cling on to every last per cent of that extra charge.

Carb Up (and keep up)

You are entering a world of overpriced food, so it’s better to be prepared and carb up for those all-day drinking sessions, rather than spend all of your money on chips that add up to more than the cost of your ticket. Cereal bars, crisps and my all-time favourite brioche aren’t going to leak or spill anywhere and will keep you going while you pound your liver.

ArcTanGent

Keep Clean (you don’t always need to shower)

In a field with sweaty bodies and portable loos, hand sanitizer is going to be your best friend – do not let it leave your side. We know you’re roughing it, but no one wants to get poorly mid festival! Having your own loo roll is always a bonus and a wet wipe shower will never go a miss. And if that isn’t enough, don’t forget that typically aerosols are not allowed into the campsites so roll-on deodorant is a must. If dry shampoo is on the no list, pack a little bottle of talc to perk up your sopping mop.

Ear Plugs (your ears will thank us)

Ear plugs will not hinder the music and you will thank us when you can still hear those same tones decades from now. Getting a decent set of molded ear plugs could make all the difference.

Torch (this is a must-pack item)

Weaving through tents in the dark may make you feel like a naff spy navigating a laser maze, but the second you trip on a rope and fall into a tent you won’t be making any festival friends. A torch will help you locate your tent and may even help you find the right end of your sleeping bag.

Hevy Fest

Safety First (always)

Aside from the one person in every group who has the whole first aid kit with them, you probably want to make sure you’ve got your own supply of pain killers, plasters and even a few Berocca to help that hangover taste a bit better. You also don’t want to wake up to find a stranger spooning you and feel that instant pang of fear. Pack a few condoms and don’t let yourself get caught out.

And if the sun does come out… remember to protect those tattoos, which you’ve spent your life collecting, with some decent sun cream. And never let yourself get dehydrated. Sunstroke is not fun, so do not forget to drink water. You can push through a hangover but paying to miss bands is never fun.

Duct Tape

Because you never know when duct tape might just save the day… you’ll just have to trust us on this one…

What festivals are you going to? And will you be taking any of Amber’s essentials?