Sunday, December 03, 2006

DJ 19

Caran d'ache Neocolor II watersoluble crayons and waterbrush, watercolor paper, approx 16.5 x 16cm

This was done last Friday at the studio working on a new Ambrozia song. It's been a long time since I sketched purely for myself, and I must say it's been very nice to pull out the ol' sketchbook again. Been too busy to paint much, aside from spending an intense October working on sumi-e style artwork for the soon-to-be released novel, Accidental Christ (which, I also did website music for). I went straight from that via a quick trip to Kyoto and Tenkawa (in Nara prefecture) to spending the last 3 or more weeks madly writing lyrics and recording vocals for the third Ambrozia album, due to be released in March. The second Ambrozia album, Real 4 Life was newly released a few weeks ago, the CD release party last week was a real blast! Here is DJ 19's site, for those interested.

Finally my life seems to be slowing down enough for me to think about doing a few sketches and maybe even paintings once more.

I'm very pleased with the way the Accidental Christ artwork has come out - it was quite an undertaking - over 25 images will be used in the book, some images popped out easily and quickly, while others needed to be coaxed along a little more before they were willing to reveal themselves. It was nice to return to the world of sumi-e, I've not done any traditional sumi-e painting for a long time. The portable sumi-e pen-brush / waterbrush kit I've been playing around with the past few months was a perfect foil for the project - allowing me to work quicker than if I were just working with traditional sumi ink and washi paper alone. The book is due to be released in the US in late January.

All the recording I've been doing lately has reminded me how much I absolutely love recording and has inspired me to start thinking again of upgrading my humble home music-sketchpad studio with some better equipment to get me started exploring again. I tend to simply throw on my Microtrack recorder with a stereo mic while playing keyboard and singing song ideas, it would be nice to take those further on my sketchpad studio, something I haven't done for a long while. Hehe, I have a bit of a backlog waiting to for further exploration!

I'm also keen to start on a collaborative project with shakuhachi playing friend, Bruce Heubner. We have been trying to tee up each other's schedules for nearly a year now, finally it seems we are going to have some time to get together over the next few months. I will keep my fingers crossed. Apart from working with Ambrozia I've had a bit of a sabatical from music projects this year, having found myself immersed in the world of the visual arts. It feels nice to start thinking of returning to creating music again from a new perspective.


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