kneeshooter: (avatar)
Friday night was The Levellers. Wow. It was like being 19 again. Although I've seen them doing a "seated acoustic gig" in the last couple of years I've not seen a full show since 1993 in Portsmouth - actually might have been the second gig I ever went to (first was Fat Bob on the Cure's Wish tour). Looking at the Lev's discography they've been releasing steadily since they got together, but the gig concentrated on the catchy tunes - there was a lot of Levellers and Levelling the Land. But they pulled it off without sounding like a "Shit, we've run out of money! Best tour again!" gig.

Which reminds me, I must sort out if I'm going to try and do NMA next Sunday in London (after doing Batfink on Saturday).

Saturday I managed a little cycle without falling off and eventually headed into town for not-Goth Shite. Despite a slow start I had a jolly good night - though after getting a little tipsy I feel I must apologise to a number of people... [ profile] nearly_everyone was out, there was a little dancing, a little bitching, a little conversation and some other things I don't quite know how to describe.

My alcohol tolerance must be at rock bottom though, I had ~at most~ two glasses of wine and a White Russian and felt like I'd had two or three times that. Oh well... maybe I'm getting old.

Sunday I managed to rouse myself and get into Birmingham for the local Flickrmeet. It was alas a little bit of a washout - but five of us headed to BMAG for a wander around. There was some excellent modern Islamic art by Mohsen Keiany (website is but does not do the work justice), an impressive bronze Lucifer and I caught myself actually liking some of the Pre-Raphaelite draft sketches. Most surprising - I suspect it's partly the influence of artw*nk and my newfound appreciation for the narrative of creating art. The etchings room wasn't as good as it was last time though, so I lasted about an hour before heading off to Tescos. I declined to shoot after reading the photography agreement. Draconian is an understatement so I have sent some emails offering to help rewrite already!

Torchwood yesterday was ok - a slow burn like Galactica last week. This week's BSG was not so good - a bit SFX heavy I felt; but [ profile] mr_cook (damn him!) has gotten me addicted to Heroes.

Some pictures of Rotersand and The Levellers to come...

I'm also still not sleeping very well. Too many dreams.

Getting it

Dec. 8th, 2006 11:28 am
kneeshooter: (Default)
I'm not really getting it at the moment. I feel listless and disconnected. I'm sleeping too much and at the same time not at all. I'm in limbo in many ways and all around me I see and hear triggers that bring things back to me that I'd rather not remember.

I'm sure it's a passing phase - and at least it's not a dark cloud. It's just kind of grey. I want passion and enthusiasm - not a sense of overwhelming mediocrity and boredom. And the weekend? Outlook is damp and drizzly. Anyone got any smart ideas?

Last weekend I managed one night out of the two - bailing on the Cruxshadows I made it to Nottingham for Kryogenix which was fun - though I was getting a little tired. Then on Sunday I did some fiddling with photographs and developed the latest in my line of game addictions to Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds after having just finally finished The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth. Fortunately I know my addiction model very well...

The weekend was also the chance to watch the latest BSG. To start with it smacked of "cheap, mid-season filler" but as it went on I warmed to it and found it quite an interesting character driven episode. Still, not quite the pace, energy and utter bleakness I've enjoyed in the majority of the series so far.

I had a terrible day of work on Wednesday in London - despite being well up to do a talk to a reasonable sized conference I got a little flustered and was too fast. Nothing like a stick to beat yourself with (when there's the lack of anyone else to beat) but hopefully LJ-oriented catharsis will help. The day was improved by a pleasant early evening chatting about photography.

Yesterday was, as well as the last night of our first Cthulhu adventure, was the final artw*nk Photography section. Looking back over the past few weeks I get a sense I've become more confident in my work, more open minded and also more able to communicate about what I'm trying to do. As much as I'm energised about anything at the moment I'm energised about doing more, different shoots.

Which is why I am doing "yet another" gig tonight (Levellers) though on my own at present.

I did however succumb to online temptations and order some lights yesterday - "accelerating towards penury" I think is the phrase.

I suppose I'd better do some work now - though I do feel like I'm on gardening leave despite the fact a contract still hasn't turned up.
kneeshooter: (camera)
artw*nk is nearly over. I continue to fluctuate between the pretensions of an artist, the quest for recognition in my current field of "work" and the idea of an easy office life where my worst critic will be myself and my head will be kept as down as much as my mouth allows.

However, what seizing the zeitgeist and developing a narrative to my work has done is expose me to more people doing different things in a way I hadn't understood. This is only a good thing and I'm less of a wallflower in discussions than I was 11 weeks ago.

Plus I have some more books on my wishlist - having focussed an interest on John Coplans and the old favourite enfant terrible Robert Mapplethorpe. Now Mapplethorpe seems to demonstrate perfectly the blurs between art, pr0n and paedophilia - certainly his online content at the Guggenheim website rides roughshod over boundaries with its NWS pictures of child nudes.

I get this sense of desire to know and do more - maybe I should do an MA...

Or at the very least, going back to where I started, get on with plans...

And finish that new website.

Ah - ebay!

Nov. 24th, 2006 08:01 am
kneeshooter: (Default)
The usual story - something I like with a ridiculous price tag. So ridiculous in fact that no-one at all has bid. This says to me that the starting price is perhaps a little too high for the market to bear. I let it expire then contact the seller...

Me: "Hi - I saw the xxxxx you had for sale didn't sell. I'm interested but thought the starting price was way in excess of what I'm interested in paying for such a piece. What are your plans for the camera sale now?"

Him: "hi there thanks for you email but its appears that the xxx to expenssive for you as you cant aford the starting price but thanks for asking regards"

Me: "Well - that's certainly one way of looking at it - another might be that the price is too high for the market! Do let me know if you decide to re-list or offer it at a lower price - where I might be more able to afford it. Thanks!"

In other news - Brummies are invited to go my artw*nk show at the Custard Factory Gallery for the next week and a bit.
kneeshooter: (Default)
The last week has been one of horror - there was the horror of The Fog (Monday night) the horror of The Movies (over the last couple of weeks), the horror of The House (Sunday), the horror of Old Age (Saturday night) and the horror of the The Inquisition (on Friday).

I am still in pain. Not a large amount of pain, but pain nonetheless. On Monday, as I reported earlier in the week I managed to cycle into a small, unlit, unmarked skip in the fog. Fortunately not actually into it - as that would have been a matter for undertakers rather than A&E, but I threw myself and my bicycle out of the way and just managed to crush my knee (between the skip and the frame) and impale myself - probably on my pedals.

So, after this moment of adrenaline fuelled excitement I paused briefly to roll around on the floor and see what human nature is like in this day and age. Pleasantly I was surprised when a passing car stopped to see the fuss I was making - before getting back on my bike and cycling to [ profile] pax_draconis/[ profile] averylaterabbit's den of iniquity where I demanded petit pois for my rapidly swelling knee. Actually I demanded frozen peas, but being sophisticated they didn't have peas.

As I was slowly going into shock, they noticed how I was leaking and insisted on taking me to casualty where I met the archetypal "disinterested nurse" and "young cute blonde doctor". They x-rayed me as they couldn't see the bottom of my cut, shot me full of tetanus (~£800 I'm told) and then sat me down to stitch me up. Some people may be under the impression that the "legal high" I mentioned was drugs - but actually it was just my reaction to feeling someone squirt a jet of water into my leg then stitch it up "One should do it... no, maybe two.. oh look - I've fitted three in!". At this point she said "Are you ok - you look a bit ashen?" as I was contemplating whether to puke over her or not. Fortunately she finished before I could make my mind up. The "Oxford Handbook of Emergency Medicine" she was carrying around made me feel full of confidence in escaping alive too...

The stitched wound, despite being a little messy, is actually doing reasonably well - but the side of my knee is now mostly yellow and black. This makes such mundane things as "walking" and "climbing stairs" particularly painful.

In the last couple of weeks I've seen a number of horror films. This is rather odd as I actually don't like them - but Saw & Saw II have been viewed; then Dog Soldiers was on TV last night. All three were pretty smart, clever, not focussed on delivering content through SFX and, well, just a good diversion. Lost this week I liked, BSG from last night I'm a little more ambivalent about.

Last night, rather than go and be burnt at the stake in Edwards I risked, with [ profile] _tonylee_ going to Paul Simon. I say "risk" because the PR didn't confirm as they had promised. Fortunately I managed to get in with no problems and then with the combined power of our blagging smiles a ticket for Tony appeared soon after. Gig wise - he enjoyed it and wrote a cracking review. I thought it was dreadful saga-entertainment but I'm always biased when the shoot is a crap one. In this case because it was three songs shooting from the mixer, 6000 people away from the stage. So I have loads and loads of the same slightly shaky shot. Bah!

Yesterday day was artw*nk. About IPR, property and whether you can sell photos taken at gigs. Actually the last bit is a lie but I'm still trying to find a lawyer and might have made contact with someone - hopefully. In the meantime - recommendations for cheap/free lawyers always welcome.

Friday evening was "The Call of Junkfood". Mmmm. Roleplaying at its best. No one has been beaten to death with a baseball bat and only 2 SAN lost. Hardly even worth mentioning. Friday morning was my job interview. Despite being 45 minutes early (a first for me) thanks to leaving the house at 7am, I managed to stay reasonably awake and think I did ok. But we shall see. Most interesting wasn't the interview but the results of the personality test.

Apparently I managed to be relatively consistent over it, and scored mostly 5s (average between "wallflower and psychopath") but had a few highs and lows. They couldn't let me take the results away - so instead gave me a paper and pencil so I could copy them down instead. So, for your entertainment - some of my extremes below:

  • Outspoken 10/10
  • Caring 2/10
  • Data-rational 9/10
  • Evaluative 10/10
  • Conventional 3/10
  • Innovative 7/10
  • Worrying 2/10
  • Optimistic 3/10
  • Competitive 4/10
  • Achieving 7/10
And Sunday? I've been tidying the house, giving old clothes to the rats and putting all my jumpers together so they can talk to each other. I'll never find anything again...
kneeshooter: (camera)
I seem to have a job interview next Friday. It might even be interesting... More on that - probably never... Fortunately this one is in Nottingham rather than Amsterdam but travel time is roughly similar.

In better news, my Sekrit Project has come through - and now the jolly nice people at Music Non Stop and I have come to an agreement for them to sell some of my photo prints. This is all jolly, jolly exciting - and will be even more exciting when I've made back the stock cost. Of course I shall still make more money selling direct but I don't have even a sniff of their reach.

Actually I'm very excited by all this! So go, tell your friends!

Artw**k continues to be amusing - last night I had a seminar on the health and safety risks of hanging a photograph on the wall. Oddly enough it didn't take long...

Still here? Leave a comment and I'll say something nice or nasty about you. Then you can try and guess which I did.

I nearly forgot - if I don't make back the sale or return on the prints with MNS I'll have an excess. So it'll be a CombiChristmas for all my friends and family. And no, the interview isn't for a job as a comedian.


Oct. 26th, 2006 02:53 pm
kneeshooter: (Delerium)
Work just about done.

Now I need to write a 150 word artist statement for a show. Any ideas?

"I am really very normal and just enjoy playing with my camera. I don't understand words like hyper-real and can't keep a straight face when saying Zeitgeist out loud.”

“My images try to be raw and uncompromising which seldom makes me any friends but is guaranteed to make an impact. I work in colour and black-and-white, depending on my mood. I like abstract shapes and adrenaline fuelled live events; and can use a studio as easily as I can navigate the crowded pit at a gig.”

“Intuition drives my work, whether that be in trying to seize a moment during three-songs-no-flash or working with models and dynamic briefs. I keep all the pictures I take and show the ones I like. Perhaps it's my taste more than my art?"

Comments? Thoughts?
kneeshooter: (camera)
Off to Whitby later, where I will stay for a variable amount of time based on how much I enjoy myself. At the moment I'm tempted to come home on Sunday as the 80s night would be more out of habit than enjoyment - but I might feel better when I get there!

Last weekend was reasonably relaxed. Friday night hanging around with some friends; Saturday 9-10 miles on the bicycle without letting my tyres down by mistake followed by cinema and clubbing; Sunday spent relaxing even more and having another crack at the spare room. Monday and Tuesday were spent shopping for shoes and being annoyed by HEIs; Wednesday and Today will mostly be about work.

On Saturday I saw A Scanner Darkly which was ok. It took a while to really get going and I suspect I had a better time with it than [ profile] fishthecat as I'd read the book. Still, technically it was interesting even if it goes some way to demonstrate why Blade Runner is a better film for not being a faithful adaptation of Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?

Not quite wanting to go home I had a quick nose around their exhibitions and convinced myself I should fill in the paperwork to display some of my own stuff there; but there was some brilliant stuff to see - like a couple of examples from the Roadkill Family Album (not as bad as it sounds and well worth a look!

Then it was back to the cinema for The Children of Men. Clive Owen reflected perfectly a dull wooden dystopian future and it was, when all is said and done, a relatively enjoyable romp. Michael Caine was terribly grating though - with his characterisation mostly limited to saying "amigo" at the end of every sentence.

Curry on Sunday was lovely - though vegetarian restaurants, in this case Jyoti in Sparkbrook, still slightly confuse me by having a decent amount of choice - but of all the things in the world to complain of...

Now I must get on with things, but to have one less band in the backlog - here's the full set of pics from Lacuna Coil the other week.

Read more... )
kneeshooter: (Default)
At artw*nk today I was enjoying criticising the content and intended audience for Bollywood Dreams I wanted to describe it as the type of book suitable for a middle class audience who thought they know more about the topic and photography than they actually did.

Bit I didn't have the words.

There's a word for a type of person who has a trivial understanding of something but thinks they know more about that and other things. I'm sure there is. But I can't remember it. Maybe it was those poppers in 1997...

kneeshooter: (Default)
It's probably sensible to look at Thursdays now. Yesterday was my artw*nk class where we each had to come up with 6 words to inspire 150 words about our work. There was, as you might expect, a bit of a range from the mildly pretentious to the mundane. Hiding my light under a bushel as I do I was more to the former but the real winner of the evening was quirky which won a number of nominations from the cognoscenti. I showed some photographs which seemed to go down ok - though I really do need to edit down the couple of hundred prints I have to something a little more manageable with some narrative element. See - I can talk the talk now...

I missed this last Thursday because of a conference with work. Our annual national conference is normally a pretty tedious affair and while this one was slightly more animated I suspect it'll come to nothing. My self-appointed role in such gatherings is the King's Fool - a role I enjoy as those of you who know me will appreciate. I enjoy being a disruptive influence but this time I let myself become a little seduced with the idea that things might actually change which was, in retrospect, foolish.

Strangely for me I managed to get at least a little tipsy on Tuesday (in York on the way up with [ profile] ant_girl,[ profile] gothgrr, [ profile] steer, [ profile] foxy76 and the wonderful hostess [ profile] ayrton_nix), Wednesday and Thursday. No wonder I was in a funny mood at the weeeknd.

This puts me back to the weekend before which I mostly spent on trains. Friday was STJ/Dreadnought and dinner overlooking the Thames - the former being expensive for drinks - and the latter being expensive for drinks. However, I really enjoyed STJ - especially seeing as at the last one I was feeling most crippled by a lead balloon in my stomach. The only downside was not being able to escape The Prodigy. One room I can understand - but both rooms at once - aaaargh! Hero of the weekend was of course [ profile] childeric for being a most wonderful host and excellent company while waiting for the police at London Bridge station to remove a semi-comatose drunk off the bus.

Saturday was The Metamorphosis at the Lyric in Hammersmith. I spent the actual show being half impressed by the physical acting and the excellent stagecraft and the other half wondering what the hell was going on. Wikipedia tells me that no-one actually has any clue what Kafka was on about so clearly the key is to go "Hmm" and spout semi-credible rubbish when talking about it.

This I can do!

I did some other stuff at the weekend too of course, but that's between me and my conscience. And I include in that the rather middle-aged and slightly sad activity of ending up talking about accenture's withdrawal from the N3 contract at a birthday party.

So, that's roughly caught up. Oh, except for the Thursday before that weekend, which was pretty much like yesterday. In that I sat around with photographers and tried to work out where I can buy a beret...
kneeshooter: (camera)
The problem with promising to write in reverse is that life doesn't stand still. Needless to say I'm not expecting to find much time today so no doubt I'll be old and grey before I get all this done. Maybe this evening if I'm lucky.

Anyway, last night I went to my first portfolio showing. It was an interesting experience and I still need to work on my language skills to better fit in. However, I am starting to think about how portfolios go together; how colours tell a story and implementing narrative through photographs in a way I hadn't earlier. It's interesting to see what other people find interesting about my work.

I have an annoying tendency to talk down my music stuff in "arty" audiences. It's very easy to be self-deprecating as it's not carefully planned, meticulously executed art - it's about mood, energy and moment. Does that make it less valuable? Still, I picked up some compliments - but the cynic in me suggests that that is just because it's the thing to do. I guess now I have to see if I am invited to another one.

Being mostly embarrassed by my presentation I've of course thrown money at the problem and have ordered some more prints with a plan to show groups of photos together with a greater sense of coherence. How well this will work I don't know yet, but I'm becoming more and more keen on prints. Which is especially odd because a number of people were exhibiting work "on laptop" rather than "in print" and I normally pride myself on being near the cutting edge.

Then I didn't go to badminton and instead mused on how far I've come; how far I have to go; and played some more Battle for Middle Earth.
kneeshooter: (camera)
I've not really updated properly for a while - and while no-one cares other than me I suspect for the sake of my memory I'm going to play catch-up.

Starting with the most recent I'm going to intersperse w*rk today with items of history, starting with the most recent... which was seeing Lacuna Coil last night. At least, I say "seeing" which of course I did - but only for about half-an-hour before I realised I wasn't very interested in what they were shouting so I came home.

The point of course was to take some pictures and there's a small sample behind the cut of what I've done so far for the BBC. The adrenaline was still there, the interest in taking photos was still there - but there is a small cancer of hollowness growing in me. Clearly too much artw*nk - I'm getting all pretentious. Shoot me now!

Oh - and [ profile] stelmaria_clg - point Ali at this which is the 1.8 version of the 1.4 lens I loaned him last night and about £70 from Warehouse Express.

Read more... )
kneeshooter: (Default)
It's lunchtime so perhaps I should consider updating LJ. After all it's been a relatively valuable morning that should have saved my employers between £500,000 and £1,000,000. Which is a good days work.

Anyway, last weekend started with a whimper when no-one in the house could be bothered to leave it for any of the choice of nights out; followed by a most excellent 33 1/3 party chez [ profile] quondam and then a Sunday of spending too much money on things that will probably be illegal within the next couple of years; then too much cheese; a Monday at home and then the worst, most distracted game of badminton I've ever played.

This week I've done nothing except Infest photos, reading ski pr0n, paying too much money for bike servicing, too much money at MNS and been to London for an exceptionally predictable meeting. This weekend I'm going to spend running, cycling and kayaking (at least that's what I think) which is made amusing by the fact I just pulled something in my back putting the bikes on the back of the car.

However, I'm hoping this weekend helps kickstart the post-Infest diet, or at least will help against the terrible temptations presented by all the left-over food from the party. Mmmm chocolate etc. Next week I also start the artw*nk course I talked about some time ago. This is terribly exciting if for no other reason that I'll get a chance to improve my vocabulary.

This doesn't have the focus I'd hope for; or the rants; or the dreams. Could do better I suppose.

Oh, one final point - I watched Free Enterprise last night which was jolly amusing and not-at-all because I could recognise myself or any of my friends in the characters. That would be terrible and oh so predictable.
kneeshooter: (Default)
This last week has been a veritable musical adventure - from installation to emo via ebm and noize. Oh yes - and some snuffling - but that's not very musical at all.

Neither [ profile] kantti or I knew quite what to expect from the Laibach premiere/exhibition last Friday. but we set off with an open mind and vague incredulity that such a thing could happen in sunny Birmingham when the rest of the world was an option. It was interesting enough though the art installation is quite small - it was an intriguing hour of industrial noise. By that I mean Neubauten-style "proper" noise, not "noize" that makes your ears bleed and I didn't even need my earplugs. In matters of art I tend to trust my nose - I tend to sneeze when exposed to pretentious artw*nk. Friday I did sneeze, but not a lot and I did have a cold. So the jury is still out.

After the Laibach install there was a bit of drum'n'bass and appearances by [ profile] smittumi and [ profile] philoko. The first act was four drummers and 2 bassists as far as I could see. The first 5 minutes were ok, but they actually seemed to play identical repeating cycles of the same "music" for about 45 minutes by which time I was bored enough. We hung around a bit to watch photographers try and make any sense of it, then gave up and went home to sneeze.

Saturday night was Kryogenix in Nottingham which was ok, but a underattended and the sound was pretty terrible. [ profile] skinfitz did an admirable job attempting to wiggle some cables into co-operating (as far as I could tell) but with only limited success. Still, [ profile] berrega seemed to have his chin up.

Sunday was a lazy day, Chinese food and then as I settled down with my backlog - my PC crashed. I spent much of the week trying to recover from this which wasn't helped by the fact I've lost my XP Professional CD and my XP Home CD seems to have been crushed in its box and is now in a number of pieces.

The rest of the week has been some badminton, some mixed music at the Barfly on Wednesday and a functional if unexciting curry last night for [ profile] stelmaria_clg's birthday and I seem to have been persuaded by a charity call to start a direct debit to Sustrans. The Barfly extravaganza, Gym Class Heroes + Fleeing From Finales + The Mid-L-Men was, in order, "Not bad, but seen it done better", "Like a college band with a record deal" and "Oh dear. Even if you do sing about the Lickey Hills you are not black and cannot rap".

Still, exposure to new things is important right? Photos soon no doubt.

Some final work to do then off to Maelstrom which may be interesting.

Oh, if anyone is interested - my ebay purchases turned up. But being worried about fraud I noticed that the serial numbers on both cards and both CD software registration details were identical so I phoned the manufacturer's technical support. They confirmed they are counterfeit goods - so now I get to explore the delights of the PayPal and ebay dispute resolution systems. More soon no doubt...


Apr. 7th, 2006 07:49 pm
kneeshooter: (Default)
Inspired by the fact that I reinstalled the drivers for my graphics tablet and the fact I have an issue of WIRED with a big feature on A Scanner Darkly I've had a go at photoshopping a recent picture. It's not quite [ profile] wruf's efforts at being Julian Opie, but I'd appreciate comments.

I think I quite like it. Not a lot, but...

ArtW*nk )

February 2012

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