It’s been 3 weeks I think, sorry.
Week by week it feels like nothing really has happened but I guess there has looking back at it. At the moment we’re running two projects – the Dissertation and the Minor Project.
I finally came up with a question, my topics changed a fair bit since the summer but even with what I researched it all connects somehow. My question now is:
How the music industry has changed, and is it affecting local music?
Which I think is accurate to what I’m looking at. It’s taken me a while to get my thoughts together so it’s nice to have it condensed into a question now.
Since then I’ve been looking at popular music theory in books, trying to understand it. Some of it sunk in which helped as it lead me to look at other things by the theorist online, which lead to other theorists and articles which have been quite interesting. I’ve also conducted more personal interviews, zooming in on specific people in the industry. Eg. record label owners, people I know in successful bands, reporters/press.
Its been a bit odd because we had a drama with the journal hand in, which was pretty much just a misunderstanding but that meant we handed in our research for final grading last Thursday (meaning I spent most of last week working on it as well). I won’t know the grade until tomorrow I don’t think but we are still allowed to add to it even though it wont be graded. I’m happy to have the ability to keep researching regardless because I’m worried when it comes to it I’ll run out of things to write about. I might babble a bit here but I’m usually quite good at condensing.
Because we’re arty people, we have to do a designed aspect of our dissertations too; meaning it’s not just a boring essay. The point of me researching into the music industry now is to kind of aid my understanding of it in an artist sense – as someone who’s dream job is to work on the art side of it – as well as a musician sense (because why not keep my options open? I play music too). I think the design part for my dissertation is to create a zine based on the local scene and maybe give out tips on how to make the most of it at attempt to get successful. Other then that I’d quite like to create a cover for the actual essay to either look like one of those weird “Grade” something books you’d get when you start learning an instrument or to look like a record.
My minor project is the biggie at the moment. I’m really enjoying it, a lot more then the dissertation (I think due to not having great (as in unhelpful) feedback in my diploma/first year of degree I’m a bit more self – conscious of my writing skills since leaving school.) IT IS HAPPENING THOUGH. I AM MAKING MY OWN MAKE UP BRAND AND PRODUCTS. I’m actually so absorbed in this right now, and I’m hoping it might become a part of my future.
My first venture since last time was creating a piece inspired by artist collab Husman and Tchaeni. I think I was just using it as an excuse to create and sort of challenge myself to create a collage-y piece by hand and not by Photoshop. It’s not really relevant now but It’s a nice mood board I guess.
We did proposals for our minor projects that week, I was told my next step was to draw more metaphorical things. Not everything had to be literal images of the band anymore, they could be what I associate with words I think describe my experiences. I have these little prompt cards I made with words like “Anger” or “Time” written on them and then underneath, things I think of when I think of those words. For example, I have the word “Clique” so I put Mean Girls, because the word “Clique” reminds me of The Plastics and “Boo You Whore” and the Burn Book and all that kind of stuff. I haven’t done a lot of drawings since then, I have to been in the mood.
I have however come up with my brand name, brand logo, palette name, palette colours and shade names though! Which is really exciting to me, I can’t wait to see it progress properly (I have to get the boring drawing bit out of the way though 😦 I mean yeah I probably should have done more before but I have to be in the mood like I said ). My brand name is “The Ritual Cosmetics” and my eye shadow palette name is “Emotionless/Souless“. The Ritual reffering to my ritual need to put on make up before a show, because I believe it gives me luck and Emotionless/Souless being a criticism of my bass playing from someone I was meant to trust, to someone in the band behind my back. Bitter, I know. (Lucky for them I was inspired by their attitude so suck on that one)
Here’s my logo, I’m really proud of it actually! I spent the whole of yesterday working on it. I threw a few ideas together the other day as simple sketches – thinking about rituals, good luck, bad luck, OCD etc. Although I wear make up because it’s good luck in my head, my experience in the band ironically is mainly bad. So I thought a black cat was a cute representation of that irony. It also reminds me of other indie make up brands who use characters in their logo.
I spent yesterday creating type and textures for the logo using inks and poscas. It’s the first time I’ve enjoyed working with type. The hand drawn/textured writing is inspired by Basquiat who I saw at the Barbican a couple of weeks ago – His work is a big thing for me at the moment.
A couple of weeks ago David recommended me this app by adobe where you can either take a photo of something or use a photo you have and it creates a colour scheme, shapes, brushes etc for you to use in Photoshop. A friend of ours took a few photos of our gig at Club Burrito earlier on in the month and I made some schemes from that, as well as from some of the artwork I’ve done for the band too. I also did some grounds for a sketchbook, took some colours and tried to make some schemes but it wasn’t really working out for me as well as the app did.
I cut them out and put loads of combinations together, finally coming up with this!
I was actually quite scared of the oranges but once I’d used it it just kind of seemed to fit?
Metal Drummers – A deep metallic green, inspired by our luck (or lack of) with metal drummers.
Leia – A vibrant Neon Green, replicating the bass strings on my bass, Princess Leia.
Pay To Play – A grunge, muted teal colour, a homage to the money you hand over to Pay to Play companies in order to “do an opening set for Noel Gallagher who’s doing a DJ set in the next room”
Rip Off – Shiny pure purple, for all the bands who ripped off our ideas.
Emotionless – The Blackest of blacks
Souless – The purest of whites
Watching You – A lavender, in memory of those we’ve lost who never got to see us play. Who we’re hoping can see us elsewhere.
Rituals – A magic peach, representative of my relationship with makeup.
Burn the Witch – the fiery orange, reminding us of that one metal band who were horrendous at our second ever gig.
Birthday – A bright pink, my birthday is about me, and pink is my favourite colour. My brithday show this year was also bomb!
Each pan will hopefully have a Blissymbol embossed into it depending on the memory the shade represents. Blisssymbols are symbols created by Charles Bliss (I think thats his name, ha) that are used worldwide. He originally created them to allow those with language barriers communicate after World War 2. I found them whilst looking at images relating to the word Ritual on google, when I was creating my logo. I didn’t think they were quite worthy but I thought they’d look good in the pans.
I’ve been thinking about the not too distant future a lot. What the hell am I going to do to leave uni? I don’t want a normal job, I don’t even want an in between period where I get a part time job to tide me over before the creative stuff. I’m not going back to the supermarket, no way. I want to do a masters, but do I want to do it yet? eh.
I also started working for the uni as an ambassador. We pretty much show people round on open days and help them out. It’s a really fun job! I’ve had one shift so far with more to come. I’ve seen parts of the uni I didn’t know existed though!? I’ve been there five years and it’s a small place too!
Not a lot is going on in band world. We’ve had a gig announced in November at the Booking Hall in Dover. I did a poster for it here, yeah it’s the same as my zine cover but that’s why I did it, it was killing two birds with one stone.
Other then that we’re trying to get the EP done by its release December first. Wish us luck!