July 27, 2017
Marvellous gig at the weekend in Cheltenham, which is easier to get to than London (London, sort yourself out).
I wasn’t planning to film it so some of the footage is a bit wonky and it’s cut in a slightly odd manner, BUT the footage is nice and the audio is pretty good given I didn’t use an external recording device.
It’s half an hour long but it’s worth the effort. As it gets darker you can see more of the beautiful live visuals.
More info here – Zoetrope – 360 degree performance
Event was arranged by the Wilson Arts Collective
temp0rary can be found here:
July 24, 2017
I’m building a studio. I’m 41years old (today) and I’m building a studio. In a strange twist of fate I’ve been offered the opportunity to do some of the creative things I like to do for money. It’s a slim opportunity but it’s still an opportunity. Also, I know that if I don’t pro-actively start to do the things I want to do they won’t ever happen.
We don’t have much space in our flat, certainly not enough space for much of the photography I want to try. Balancing lights on top of mountainous toy boxes and arranging props around ironing and houseplants is not working. It’s as frustrating for everyone else as it is for me, but we have an attic, a very big, mostly unused attic so I’m going to build a studio in it. I’ve spent a lot of my life being reminded that I’m not very good at things, certainly not good at any traditionally ‘male’ things, like building or DIY. I’ve generally accepted this as the truth and dutifully stepped aside to the let others do the ‘manly’ stuff with the power tools and the alpha maleness to prove. It’s only in the last couple of years I’ve started to question this and generally, I’m ok at things.
I’m not going to go overboard, I’m just going to put down a floor initially, and if I don’t destroy this reality entirely in the process I’ll maybe move onto some nice additions. I don’t want this to become a distraction from the purpose (a space for creative output). I don’t really know what I’m doing but I know which end of a drill to hold and I know where the hardware store is.
I have no idea if this will take a weekend or a year. I’ll start and see how it goes. I’ve ordered the basic components to arrive by the end of the week and on Saturday (courage allowing), I’ll start building.
My name is Robert, I’m 41 years old and I’m building a studio. It may fail awfully but then, it might not.
May 31, 2017
I have some new merchandise. I’ve put a selection of Organic Contrast images onto postcards which you can buy and send to people, pin to the wall, eat (please don’t eat them), or do whatever else seems appropriate.
For your money you get 5 postcards chosen at random (see the full set here) or you can choose which ones you want. here is some spiel which shows how terrible I am at writing about my art:
Organic Contrast came about from experiments with minimalist photographs of silhouettes (mostly trees) mixed with geometry and symmetry. They are mostly monochrome although some have a small amount of colour.
The images explore the beauty that can be found in the simplest of organic shapes contrasted against rigid geometric constraints.
The postcards are A6, matt printed card with a space on the reverse to write a lovely message, draw a picture of your own or scribble down random thoughts about the apocalypse.
April 27, 2017
Long hours and seemingly endless work pressure and the last three weeks have been a blur of stress and anxiety, the anxiety never really kicking in until the stress starts to drop for a couple of hours at which point it sneaks in though a cranial back door to slap me round the metaphorical face for daring to relax. I’m fine I’m fine I’m fine I’m fine I’M NOT FUCKING FINE. (I am fine, all is under control).
I always get trigger happy with the impulse buying at such times. With no time allowance for relaxation (wake up, work, sleep, repeat) and little opportunity to leave the house I spend the few minutes down time I have each day browsing tat on the internet. It’s a self destructive habit and I know it at the time but I do it anyway. Last week I bought Warhammer Quest: Shadows over Hammerhal (looks lovely, can’t afford it, don’t have time to play it), most of the albums of Grace Petrie (beautiful and makes my cry a lot) and a Crenova Trail Cam the trail cam caused great excitement for the family and although I do regret throwing money we don’t really have at tech we don’t need it’s already proved a great addition to our tat mountain. First night we used it in the garden we got some footage of a hedgehog we were not aware we shared a space with snuffling round the garden.
Since then we have managed to capture:
I’m enjoying trying different places to put it round the garden for best results. So far I’ve learned to not put it too low down as otherwise it gets coated in dew which doesn’t damage it (as far as I know) but does make for blurry photos, also having it too near the ground causes wind in our expertly unmown lawn to set of the motion detector.
Here’s our tiny visitor, which my child has kindly named ‘Hedgehog’.
March 11, 2017
The woods breathe. Imperceptible, exhale mist, expel dew, form sparkling crystals on the mossy floor. Cracked and jagged limbs dance still to winter’s brittle rhythm. Half imagined faces in the peeling wooden skin, joyful at the glittering of frost. Listless darkness pierced by shafts of low sun, these alone hold up the sky. A movement out of sight, blur of legs and eyes. Timid deer tread soft and invisible while squirrels thunder unconcerned. Hard ground, cold like a threat, a vessel for future life but for now restrain growth. Everything slows to stasis. Sharp edged shattered stumps, broken bones and crooked teeth. Tea stained lace bracken muddied underfoot. Give in for the year, retreat until spring’s reconciliation. Masts without sails envy still clothed firs, waiting for the new wardrobe of summer. Filigreed leaves now morbid decoration. Branches against the sky form intricate chaotic geometry. Hold tight, move forward with conviction, change will come and we will advance into warmth.
February 26, 2017
Following on with the experiments with the field recording I’ve also been getting back into writing music. This is the first piece I’ve done in a couple of years, its’ 16 minutes of ambient/industrial/drone/field recording. So basically birdsong, industrial noises and general ambience.
The field recordings were all done in Ruscombe.
It’s had some quite nice feedback so far so will be doing some more soon.
February 24, 2017
HELLO. Here’s a piece I’ve had marked as ‘work in progress’ for about two months. It’s not going to progress so here it is. I was worried it was a bit too ‘cheap gothic horror book cover’ but I like the symmetry. It was the rough which gave me the ideas I’m working on now and which have caused me to spend too much time dragging myself round cold moors looking for crows and magpies.
February 1, 2017
BOOKMARKS. I have bookmarks.
So I was getting some merch made up, mostly postcards and stickers to give away and I wanted to do something else as well. It was going to be badges but NO, BADGES CAN SHUT UP (for now), also there may be a bit of self interest as I am reading far too many books at the same time and keep having to use old envelopes and receipts as bookmarks, which frankly doesn’t work properly.
THESE are properly engineered, stress tested, measured to within 0.002 of a millimeter* and they smell nice**
I have failed to include a photo of a book for scale because I am terribly unprofessional (and it’s late), but I assure you, they are a great size for books, as they are actually bookmarks.
Picture of a flamingo shouting at a penguin on one side and a silhouette composition of starlings taking off on the other. I’m REALLY happy with how the starlings came out, it’s the first time I’ve seen one of my silhouette designs printed and it came out far better than expected.
Anyway, I’ll be giving them away with any orders from the Etsy store and as gifts with other things I will be working on shortly.
I am considering selling them as well. What do you think? Do people actually buy bookmarks? Would they have to be in packs of 5 or similar? Should I do more designs to do a nice pick and mix set?
* these are lies
** this is not a lie but it is subjective
January 21, 2017
So today I went out to try out the new Zoom H6 and do a little field recording (in an actual field). I’ve got some audio I want to capture for an animation project I’m working on and had some specific sounds I wanted to try and get.
I’m generally aware of how close to flight paths I am but christ I didn’t choose the best place today. Knowl Hill is lovely, great scenery and generally quiet but it’s got the Heathrow flight path far too close and it’s dead in the path of the local airfield from which came a constant swarm of helicopters and biplane. Regular joggers and cyclists didn’t help much, trying to get a recording of some Red Kites and ended up with both Red Kites and the sound of a cyclist loudly clearing his throat as well. Slightly spooked a gang of power hikers while I was setting up at the side of a path, clearly the sight of a hairy man with a briefcase full of cables is a little offputting.
The H6 itself is bloody amazing. I tried out the XY mic which gave a wonderfully clean directional recording, I got some good clips of crunching ice, squeaky gates and footsteps through leaves, although I need to practice a bit more to get the levels right. Going to attempt to go deeper into the Chilterns (and check the map for airfields) in a couple of weeks.
Field recording face:
The lovely device with it’s furry hat:
December 10, 2016
Dreams of light bugs. Exploding into life, blur of electric blue. Fading quickly, haze of dissipating sparks.
Light painting with Alexander (and a bit of photoshop).
I am Bob. This is my blog. It is an outlet and a substitute for real life. It contains my art, photography, illustration and thoughts on mental health (I deal with anxiety on a pretty much constant basis).
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Why? +-*It was one of the best gifts in a while. I read it every morning.
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