2022 calen­dar

My 2022 calen­dar is now ready – you can order calen­dars and prints of the artwork here.

Plan­et­ary Urban­isa­tion

Yester­day I went to a talk at Well Projects from anthropologist/​sound artist Dimitri­os Borm­pouda­kis from the Univer­sity of Kent as part of A Cut From Sharp Grass, “a visu­al art exhib­i­tion & series of public events developed in response to the increas­ingly urban­ised, networked & tech­no­lo­gic­ally integ­rated land­scape of Kent”. Here’s my sketch­book notes from the talk.

Bismuth

Hello from the south­ern hemi­sphere. Here’s some new press shots of my friends’ band Bismuth I took a few weeks ago at the origin­al UK Botany Bay…

So I moved back to Kent…

So I moved back to Kent last week. (I’m knackered after trav­el­ling round Germany for three weeks and then moving house back-to-back). To Margate in partic­u­lar. I grew up in Medway, a little way to the west, but left when I was eight­een to go to univer­sity, as it didn’t feel like there were any oppor­tun­it­ies for me. Nearly fifteen years later, here I am. A lot has changed in that time.

Slide film photo­graphs of Whit­stable

I used to do a lot of photo­graphy, but I don’t do half as much now, which is a bit of a pity. My flickr account (which I star­ted in 2007) has 376 albums and 4976 photos. I thought I’d do some regu­lar posts with photos from some of the older albums. I’ll tag them as “from the archives”, espe­cially as a lot of them are from well before I star­ted this blog, or moved it from blog­ger to word­press. Here are some photos from a trip to Whit­stable in Janu­ary 2008. It was my birth­day, and I went on a trip to the coast with my friend Bryony and our then boyfriends. I had this Kodak slide duplic­a­tion film I’d got in a giant bag of expired film I’d got for 50p per roll a few years earli­er, and kept in the freez­er. I’m not sure if it was taken with a Lomo LCA or an Olym­pus XA2. I had both at the time. I still have them in a box under the bed, but they’re both slightly broken, because I got them very, very cheaply second-hand (I think they were both about £15). I should get round to fixing them at some point. I think they’re fixable. These pictures were cross processed in C41, and then scanned. The pictures on my flickr account are a little small by modern stand­ards, but screens were smal­ler then, and stor­age space on Flickr limited. I still have the negat­ives filed away, anyway.

Signal to Noise

On Sunday night I went to my friend John Newman’s sound install­a­tion at the Deaf Cat in Rochester, put on by the TEA people. There was a Damo Suzuki improv gig the previ­ous night when I was away. I’m sure they organ­ise these things when I can’t come specific­ally to spite me. I also went to watch at their band dating event they put on on Thurs. They got musi­cians to fill out a profile, then assigned them to a band, gave them 2 free rehears­al sessions, then they played whatever they came up with on the night. It all worked out very well. There were sound­scapes and some­thing that soun­ded like a Talk­ing Heads rehears­al.

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Were­bitches and devils

On Friday, my friends Tukru and Louise had their first gig (for Tukru in 10 years) appro­pri­ately on Inter­na­tion­al Women’s Day. The band only formed a couple of weeks ago, so it was a bit nerve-wrack­ing for them, but everything went fine. I tried to take some photos, but it was in the cellar of an old restaurant/​bar, where you could touch the ceil­ing and there were no stage lights, so I didn’t get anything much usable

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The world is not my oyster

Here are the other photos from Whistable. I took more of the boats, seashore etc with my wide-angle lens on film, and I haven’t had it developed yet. I much prefer my film SLR to my digit­al one (70s Pentax camer­as just feel so nice to use), but I’m too broke lately to use much film, and I still have 5 rolls sitting around that need devel­op­ing. I didn’t eat any oysters while I was there, because I’m veget­ari­an, but I did have a really great mascar­pone, truffle and rose­mary pizza.

Rooflines

These are from some photos I took in Whit­stable a few weeks ago, a pretty oyster fish­ing town in Kent (and some­times *too* popu­lar with the daahn from londons for the taste of the locals). The roofline of the school took my fancy.

Smooth down the aven­ue glit­ters the bicycle

I’ve always had a soft spot for 30s subur­bia. These two pictures are a place called Twydall, near where my mum lives. I went along there to buy some wool, and I wasn’t disap­poin­ted, the area is full of old ladies. Also, the fact that the wool shop is called World of Wool­craft and is run by what could be the broth­er of the Comic Book Store Guy made me laugh.

Effect­ing my disguise

Last Saturday me & Tukru decided to go to a party on a boat at the last minute. I saw that a friend of mine, Rob Bidder, who I hadn’t seen in person for a looong time, was doing some music at the event, and it would be good to see him, and the party looked like fun anyway. Being on a boat, and near Hallowe’en, the dresscode was aquat­ic, so I had to come up with some­thing to wear in an after­noon (and Tukru in even less time). Good old Costumes for Plays and Play­ing came to the rescue. A fish hood/​cape with scales for me, and a button-on mermaid tail for Tukru.

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Aban­doned school science lab

I was doing some resid­en­tial teach­ing for the last 2 weeks. A group of year 9s from Chile came on a school trip, and I gave them lessons about English and Brit­ish History/​Culture and took them to vari­ous histor­ic­al places like Cambridge and Canter­bury. I was work­ing in the middle of nowhere, in this old manor house in the middle of a nation­al park. The house had been a board­ing school from the 1920s to 2005, and the company I worked for was only using part of the build­ing.  We were the last school tour to be there before it was going to be handed over to the new owners, who no-one knew much about, but didn’t seem to be using it as a school. There were lots of locked up rooms that had been used by the board­ing school, but weren’t used for the language holi­days, like the science lab, and they had piles of school stuff lying every­where. The atti­tude was pretty much feel free to explore, just make sure the kids don’t get into anywhere that could be danger­ous.

Enfold­ing sunny spots of green­ery

I haven’t posted here for a while because life has over­taken me a little, and I’ve been dash­ing from place to place. I’m in Palma de Mallorca right now visit­ing Marcos’ family, with a perman­ent move to London on the cards for the end of the month (it can’t come too soon). I’ve got a back­log of photos to work through.

Mystery film- Friends and Places

This is anoth­er ancient film scanned. It’s defin­itely from 2008, but it skips about all over the place, there’s shots of Medway and ATP and Brighton, but I didn’t move to Brighton until the August of that year, and ATP was in May, and I have no idea when the Medway pics were taken, so it seems to have been hanging about in my camera for quite a while. I don’t even know what camera I used. I think it might be a Lomo LCA, the one I got in an Esto­ni­an junk shop for £20. It’s since half fallen apart, so I’m glad I didn’t pay those Austri­an rip-off merchants much money for it. Whatever camera I used, it’s some really grainy 400asa cheapo Ferra­nia marked film, prob from pound­land

Someone some­where some­how feels you should be here

I guest djed at Moogie Wonder­land with Tukru last week. It went pretty well, although the students were conspicu­ous in their absence because it’s exam/​assessment time. I didn’t plan what I was going to play, just went with intu­ition.

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Bird has flown

Here’s the rest of the pictures from where I took the panos at the River­side Coun­try Park. There’s a promon­tory which goes out to an island in the river, almost at the mouth where the Thames and Medway meet, with narrow beaches with reed­beds and aban­doned boats along the edge and woods and pools in the interi­or. I used to come here a lot. I partic­u­larly love it in the winter when there’s prac­tic­ally no-one there except me and some water birds.

The seas will reach and always seep

Today it was sunny and I had the day off, so I went to the River­side Coun­try Park. It’s where the Medway meets the Thames Estu­ary. It’s one of my places. I exper­i­mented with making some stitched panor­amic pictures. I also took some normal pictures. I’ll post them later. I’d love to have one of those turny Russi­an panor­amic film camer­as, but I’m too poor.

Get Out of the Office and Into the Spring­time

At last, some sunshine. Today me & Tukru went out for some coffee and draw­ing. It’s the London Zine Symposi­um on Sunday, and we have stuff to do. We didn’t actu­ally get much cafe time, because we forgot how early stuff closes round here. I’ve got some new stuff up my sleeve, but I don’t want to show it until it’s done.

Wander­ings

The other day I was round my dad’s. It was a sunny day, and I didn’t fancy spend­ing the whole day cooped up indoors. I got my dad to give me a lift up to Kit’s Coty, a strange isol­ated place nearby, which has the remains of a Neolith­ic barrow there. The barrow isn’t very evid­ent these days, but the gate into the tomb is still there. There are more houses round there than I’d thought, all detached with big gates and long drives and beware of the dog signs, and on unpaved roads. It was totally quiet and a bit David Lynchish round there.

Idly Draw­ing

Seeing as I’m meant to be an art student, I thought it was time I did some draw­ing. I feel rusty at draw­ing. Here’s a draw­ing I made earli­er sitting in the Castle Gardens after I signed on at the dole. Sign­ing on always puts me in a foul mood, there’s just some­thing about Chath­am dole office, but draw­ing in the sunshine made me feel a little better. I think the drawing’s a little bland though. I think I should’ve made the left tree black shaded too, for better compos­i­tion, but I was just draw­ing what I saw, one decidu­ous tree, and one ever­green.

A Bee See

On Friday I checked out my friend Pete’s gig, and then went to Moogie Wonderland’s Sipping Sessions event at a local cafe. This is Bee (short for Bian­cha) who’s one of the people who organ­ises it. She’s very photo­gen­ic, and enjoys having her photo taken, which is great as far as I’m concerned.

Et Tu Moogie?

Last night I went to Moogie Wonder­land. It was Ides of March themed this time, and I made them some stuff.

This is a projec­tion on the life of Juli­us Caesar made with card­board and chro­makey. It’s clunky as hell, and there’s no way I’ll use it for uni, but I got it done in time for the event, and that’s what matters in this instance. (Also the audi­ence is drunk people, and they’re not known for their attent­ive­ness or atten­tion to detail). My main beef with it is there’s too much text (it was the only way I could think of to get the story across when I didn’t have time to do more soph­ist­ic­ated anim­a­tion) and most of the silhou­ettes are too basic. I’m going to remake it, with much better compos­i­tions and just gener­ally at a high­er, more soph­ist­ic­ated level.

I don’t wanna join yr club, I don’t want yr kind of love (Typic­al Grrls v2)

So we had the second Typic­al Girls last week. It was more success­ful than the first, we had 20-25 people there. They were all people we didn’t know as well, which was surpris­ing. I made 50 lurid pink cakes covered in edible glit­ter, and played some Patti Smith and Comet Gain this time. Tukru brought a table full of zines and fundrais­ing stuff for her roller derby team and played some Nicki Minaj and slipped in a bit of Lady Gaga, which made me pull a face. All the cakes got eaten, and even the old men who lurk down the end of the bar had a good time. Hope­fully more people and more dancing next time.

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Deher­mit­ting

I’ve been a hermit since Christ­mas. Not going anywhere, and not seeing anyone much. You can’t stay at home forever, so I ventured out on Saturday, and took Tukru with me. (I drag her out of the house, she tells me when I’m being an idiot (frequently), it works out nicely). Tukru wore a purple wig.

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Bathed in Ring­flash

I decided to try out my Lomo ring­flash with a film SLR over xmas. I set the camera at f 5.6/ 1/​125 for 400 asa film (I’d lost the instruc­tion sheet, and that was my best guess), but I could easily have got away with some­thing like f11.

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Saturday crafter­noon of a Janu­ary

Tukru came round and brought me some birth­day presents (shrinky-dinks, sweets, and patches) and we had a crafter­noon. She typed up zine bits on my type­writer, which has much smal­ler type than hers, but tends to get a jammed up ribbon, and I stuck some pictures from my moun­tain of magazine cutouts into scrap­books, and we listened to Nirvana and Neut­ral Milk Hotel and the Beatles and David Bowie and Simon and Garfunkel. We ate some tofu stir­fry, and the aldi version of Ben & Jerry’s which is exactly like normal icecream, and laughed at BRIAN BLESSED’s attempt at a Greek accent in My Family and Other Anim­als (sedate fun)

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Categorised as Zines

Hats & Hamming it up

The night before I went to Austria I hung out with some friends to drink beer and yell out the answers to quiz shows. I do enjoy a good bit of trivia. Some hats made an outing, and I took some hammily posed photos. I also got really indig­nant about the continu­ing exist­ence of Roger Waters, even though he’s not quite in the Bono league for me.

Broad­stairs

Here’s some pictures I took in Broad­stairs last summer, they were languish­ing on my hard-drive until this week­end.

Margate Shell Grotto

Earli­er in the summer I went to the Margate Shell Grotto with my mum. I thought it was a piece of victori­an tour­ist kitsch from memory, but it wasn’t like that at all.

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Categorised as Travel

Week­end in Medway

Last week­end I went back to Medway, and I went up the Great Lines with Tukru, and we messed about taking photos.