Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Silly Artist's Log (A Creative Diary) - March 2024

Artist's log, stardate 4.2.2024  - Been busy in the studio, working on new paintings, music, and texts.

I have decided to keep this log, a creative diary, sharing the work I've made each month. This may be interesting to some folks, which is lovely, but primarily will help me organize ideas and keep track of progress. 

I have updated the Lovely Book Club website with an online gallery and shop. This is the first time I have ever made my paintings available for purchase. Seems exciting, and a little scary. 


New series: Goofy Tigers! 

There are, apparently, two proper collective nouns for a group of tigers; streak and ambush. I prefer ambush. An ambush of Goofy Tigers may exist on canvas, whilst individual Goofy Tigers exists as wooden sculptures. Each tiger, by nature, is unique, despite the medium, process, and dimensions being the same.


A new new series about human bodies, intimacy, cuddling, kissing, loving...

A new new new series about animals with focus on simple brushstrokes. This is a continuation of, or at least somewhat related to, Goofy Tigers. These are Goofy Creatures. Some goofy creatures are imaginary or hybrid ideas, like these zebra/horse/hyena/dogs, and some are slightly more realistic-ish (but only slightly).


New digital release on all major streaming platforms, Men Don't Understand Violence, a collection of poetry set to sample-based music. Voices of old friends embedded in the loops, which brings me joy. Most of the writing is from an unpublished manuscript. Should you desire to read the pieces, please feel free to email me at sillyrobgray@gmail.com and I'll send you the text. 

Available on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube, etc.

Other music recordings: 

I made a couple of recordings of ideas for a live set, hence these two medleys. These include some old jams (Faustian Bargains was written about 18 years ago when I was a student in Isla Vista, CA, playing in a band called Gang of Virgins with my friend Max), some middle-aged jams written over the past few years, and some brand new jams written recently (specifically Distraction). 

And one brand new recording, revisiting an old method of song-making that I used to employ when I started making music about twenty years ago. Ocean Song started as a short drum and guitar loop. Drums programmed on an MPC, and guitar filtered through a heavy fuzz pedal. After recording the initial layer, I added a few more layers of guitar, and then wrote the lyrics and melody based on that. More often than not, I write a song on acoustic guitar over a few days or weeks, and then think about how to record it. This backwards method is very fun and yields unexpected results. I think of this process as sculpting a song, rather than writing. 


I have a completed manuscript which I hope to publish as a book in the not-too-distant future on Lovely Book Club. 

I have also been working on new poems, writing by hand, transcribing and editing on the computer. 

If you have a desire to read, please feel free to email me at sillyrobgray@gmail.com. I'm happy to share poetry, but weary of publishing. I feel more comfortable sharing work with folks who actually want to experience it, so if that's you, all it takes is a brave email and we can be poetry pals! 


That's about it, a few sketches, drawings, and digital designs aside. I have been playing football, futsal, and chess. I have taken some nice walks. I have been reading. Thoroughly enjoyed I Celebrate Myself: The Somewhat Private Life of Allen Ginsberg, along with his Collected Poems. Recently revisited some James Baldwin, Lydia Davis, Clarice Lispector, Roberto Bolano. Enjoyed dipping into some Emily Kendall Frey, June Jordan, and Nicanor Parra poems. Currently reading The Barcelona Inheritance by Jonathan Wilson, and always have a few chess books on the go. 

If you have read this far, THANK YOU! I'd love to correspond with you. I'm on social media, but I'm not on on social media, and generally try to avoid looking at it, so please feel free to email me at sillyrobgray@gmail.com and let me know what you've been making, writing, and reading. I look forward to keeping this artist's log alive, so check back next month for an update!