Photo project captures Hastings musicians in lockdown – and asks them what they’ve learned

With months of live gigs and festivals cancelled a Hastings live music photographer has built a portfolio of portraits capturing the local music community in lockdown.

Sara-Louise Bowrey has over 20 year’s experience taking pictures of bands on stages from the smallest pubs to the largest festivals in the world – as well as taking them into the studio for promotional shots.

Now she’s expanded her portraiture work – and as a result has been able to publish a web-gallery that is growing daily as more and more people want to be included in the project.

And it’s not just musicians – venue owners, promoters and sound engineers are all getting included too.

She says: “Live music is so important to Hastings – it’s one of the reasons I moved here a few years ago. In that time I’ve made so many great friends in the scene and I really wanted to keep showcasing their work during this time when they haven’t been able to perform.

“I started with just a handful of shoots a week but I’m now getting asked to do three or four a day. I try to keep them short – just ten to 15 minutes at most as I’ve always loved the spontaneity of taking pictures on stage and I wanted to bring this to this portrait project.”

The gallery has been published on the Hastings Flyer website – a local listings service that also publishes reviews, photos, and videos of the Hastings music circuit.

The full gallery can be found at

As well as just the photos each person has been asked to say a few words about what they have done or learnt about themselves during lockdown.

Here’s what a few of those captured had to say:

  • Harry Osborne, the lead member of the up-and-coming band someone/anyone: “I learnt to appreciate being busy. Found a lot of time to focus on gardening though which has been a blessing. Have worked on lots of new material and am really looking forward to making vibrations with other humans in a room at some point.”
  • Isaac Wright – drummer in Butane Regulators: “I started running and then I quit running. I did lots of woodworking and drumming.”
  • Ian Greensmith – long-serving drummer with many bands, most recently The Dirty Contacts: “Gardening, working on my allotment, lounging around with my cats, baking, online quizzes, and cajoling my imaginary friend Vic Templar to get on with his novel that’s not going to write itself.”
  • Albie Todd – Victoria McDonnell, Harry Randle Marsh Band, and Someone/Anyone: “I have learnt that a woodland bbq is a good way to spend time.”
  • Jason Smith – drummer: “I have co-written and recorded on over eight official singles, original pieces, I’ve been interviewed by The Drum Panel, produced arrangements for official videos and advertisements and taken professional pals drum lessons to refine my chops…I’m motivated and driven, more than ever.”
  • Tallulah Savage – lead singer and guitarist in all-girl Hastings band, Hotwax: “Lots of time for thinking and daydreaming.”
  • Mark Tanner, bass player in Haest and The Barracks: “Spent less money on gigs and booze! … but more on records and random stuff.”

Tell us all about your experiences of lockdown using the comment section below or click the ‘Submit Your Story’ tab in the banner at the top of the page and send us your story and pictures to go with it.

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