Souls of Outside Lands

Article by: Dijon Bowden|@DijonBowden

Mon August 11, 2014 | 00:00 AM

While a good lineup always makes for a fun festival, let's face it: the shiny, happy people that flock en masse to the event are really the heart and soul of the festival. It's that communal joy that we share with tens of thousands of total strangers that makes festival-going so special.

Our friend Garry Bowden, the talented photographer behind the beautiful Souls of San Francisco project, was at Outside Lands this weekend on a mission: turn some of those tens of thousands of total strangers into friends, and spread a little more of that communal joy.

Mission: accomplished. 

4pm   B

Right: "I usually like smaller festivals like Electric Forest, unless you go to Hangout or Bonnaroo, but this is really fun!”
Left: “I love all the interactions with different people, the music is awesome but the people are really stellar. There’s a culture here that makes you feel connected with people. It’s a really mature festival.”

7pm   A

"This is all from Full Belly Farms. It's near Davis, it's a certified organic farm started about 30 years ago by my parents. It's about 400 acres and we grow over 100 different things. A lot of tomatoes, 8 different types of eggplants, fruit trees, flowers."
"It's so cool that you can come learn about this stuff and buy fresh fruit. I think I've reached my fill on pizza and chocolate covered bacon."
"That's good too."
"For sure, I ate the shit out if it."
"Haha, now maybe you should have some melon."

3pm   B

“What’s your favorite part of the festival experience?”
Left: “The vibe, the people. Everyone is on one. A good one. We came here last year and got scammed hella hard, some dude sold me fake tickets. He gave me a hug, told me they were real, and then one was real, one was fake. But we still had a great time. I said, ‘Next year we’re getting real tickets and we’re gonna go HAM. Look at us, we made it!”

937 A4461

“I’m from Mt. Shasta.”
“Have you ever seen any aliens out there?”
“Some people say I’m an alien…”
“Let me see your eyes…Yep! Definitely an alien.”
“That’s what they tell me.”

2pm   A

"What do you like about going to festivals as opposed to a normal show?”
Right: “I think the vibe and the people are really cool. My fiends are so into this stuff so it’s fun to find people who are afraid to use port-a-potties, and stand for 2 hours waiting for a show. It’s just a different kind of experience. Everyone is so nice. Everyone’s always talking to you, random strangers. That doesn’t happen in real life. This is her first festival.”
Left: “My first one! For the past 5 years I’ve been working and working at medical school and haven’t had a chance to chill out.”
Right: “She’s a doctor now though.”
Left: “I am a doctor, but I’m here to have fun, so if you need a medic, look the other way!”


“Are you guys dating?”
Him: “Yeah, we hang out a lot.”
Her: “We’re close.”
“What’s your favorite thing about her?”
Him: “It’s not just one thing, it’s her as a whole. She’s smart, she’s funny, she’s beautiful, she’s articulate, we laugh - that’s probably my favorite thing. We laugh a lot.”
“And what’s one of your favorite things about him?”
Her: “How comfortable we are with each other. We’re gonna spend a lot of time together this weekend and he’s one of the people that the more time I spend with him, the more I like him.”

Ecolands 1

"EcoLands is the non-profit area of Outside Lands. For me, it really represents the aspect of the festival that's about connecting with each other around the larger transformational issues that pervade these large gatherings. It's the heart of the movement that is pulsing underneath these events."
"Keeping green awareness up at a music festival seems very San Francisco, makes me proud to live here."
"Yeah, we're really pushing the boundaries regarding what people are offering as a non-profit. It's not just a pamphlet of information. It's interactive. People can make a flower bouquet, or make a chalkboard sign that says 'free hugs,' or learn about their local farmer."

3pm   A

“You’re such an awesome couple. How’d you guys get together?”
Him: “We met magically in a teepee.”

For the full gallery, click here. Stay tuned for more Souls photos from Garry + Fest300...and look for us at Bay Area festivals over the coming months!