I’ll start off on the defensive: I’m sorry but I didn’t, nor do I commonly, come up with some punchy title or art that’s not just more or less a description of the article but also one that instantly grabs the attention of a thrill-seeking reader: Something like, for instance “10 Ways to Become Intelligent Enough to Intellectualise Your Point of View”. I’m writing my memoirs, rather than engaging in a competition to get the most views and become some kind of ‘super-blogger’. I’m a fucking singer/songwriter anyway. If my posts aren’t exciting enough to drive a grasshopper-mind into multiple orgasms of cheap-thrills from attention-grabbing headlines and short paragraphs adorned with single-syllable rhetoric, then such a person is not obligated to read them if they’re not receiving enough instant-titillation. Even when I do write in that way, as I’ve tried out in the past, I still get only a cult following of a number of individuals, usually unconnected to the communal brain-cell and still benefiting from a mind of their own, who didn’t fail their IQ test. – You know; the type of people who have an intellect and understand words of 4-or-more-syllables. In a way I suppose I see that as a bonus because I do prefer quality to quantity. However if anyone finds my writing overcomplicated and can’t be bothered to look in a dictionary once in a while then it’s their loss, sadly.
Before I get accused of some form of textual snobbery I’ll point out that this isn’t my usual style of writing it’s true: I usually try to dumb it down to some extent, as much as I’m able. – But since this is the first proper post on this blog I thought I’d make it somewhat more ‘intellectually juicy’ than usual. – If I can use the English language to the full whilst delivering true meaning within my verbatim then why not do it to the best of my ability? There’s probably the odd typo in it somewhere anyway: I was never able to boast of being a good typist.
For what it’s worth; here we go then: –
Let’s start off this here blog with a question: Which came first; the chicken, or the egg?
To have a chicken one must first have had a baby chick, which hatched from the egg that the chicken laid. – A different chicken, doubtless, unless there’s a single special self-perpetuating chicken capable of self-reincarnation within a time paradox. – As in laying its own egg before it dies and hatching itself from that egg post mortem. – But, before we start getting all Doctor Who in the first paragraph, we’ll ignore that attempt at going off at a tangent and starting a piece of science-fiction writing.
It’s a question I often find myself asking myself as I work: You see the way I work is by starting with an idea, developing that idea, making it reality and giving it substance as a piece of draft physical art, enhancing it yet further, putting it together and arranging it in a legible and usable format, tweaking it, adding to it, tweaking it some more… And then going to production as a product. – It’s not exactly rocket-science: it’s a process of using my inner creativity from my inner talent, and building that talent by exercising that talent. – It’s like a muscle, a talent-muscle: The more it’s used to create art the better it gets at creating art. – and it still requires a lot of fine tuning no doubt.
I use that sort of sequential process both for creating music – with or without lyrics, as well as for creating pictorial art which I use for things such as album covers. At times I’ll create an illustration to go with a track on an album or EP which already has a cover; but this illustration is special to the individual track, whether or not it ever gets to see the light of day. – Take, for instance, the cover illustration I designed for my track *Facebook Games* from my September 2014 EP *Divine Social*.
The chicken or egg scenario is played out here in the case of, usually, the musical track being created first – to be followed at some point in the future by an illustration based upon that track. – The music, or music and lyrics, are the egg; from which springs a visual representation. In fact at all times that I remember in the past, the music, and/or the lyrics, has come first, to be followed by the illustration, should there be one created. – Except for one recent instance which I’ll come to shortly.
Recently something extremely unusual has happened; In fact so unusual that it’s a first for me: It started when I created an animated gif from a couple of jpeg pictures. It appears in this case, not actually that the egg came before the chicken, nor that the chicken appeared before the egg. – This time it seems that the seemingly impossible has occurred and that both chicken and egg were brought into existence conjunctively.
In order for you to understand the following 2 paragraphs more clearly I should explain the the visible-light-spectrum consists of seven main colours, in terms of the CMYK colour model. (CMYK [Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black)] is the standard colour model used by printers for printing onto a white background. The alternative, and truer, RGB (Red, Green, and Blue) colour scheme [which also appears as a subset of the CMYK colour scheme] is used in places such as CRT television screens for printing onto a blank background. It’s also insisted upon by the music industry still as the default colour-scheme for album cover designs.( – Which can, at times, further complicate things somewhat, as I tend to create artwork using CMYK. Direct logical conversion from CMYK to RGB can often produce some interesting and unwanted results.) I view each of these colours in its purest form as the peak of a cycle or wave. If you’re familiar with Euclidean geometry you’ll realise that in such a scenario it would be necessary to phase-shift through a full 360 degrees of arc to get from the peak of one cycle to the peak of the next, or from one pure colour to the following pure colour. – Anything between those two points being a combination of each of the two relevant colours to whatever extent. Bearing this in mind will assist you to make sense of the following: –
On this occasion I decided to use a jpeg image as a background, but separate the single pic into a number of individual images, differing in colour only, by shifting the colour hue and chrominance through a little more or less than one complete cycle of the visible spectrum, and taking a frame on each phase-shift, rinse and repeat, until I had frames encompassing the seven main spectral shifts available. I also inverted the colours and took seven more frames at intervals, again corresponding roughly to the seven main phase-shifts.
I then arranged these 14 frames to run sequentially, first as a sequence of positive images, then as a sequence of negative images. I compressed the equal intervals between each frame so that the entire sequence took around seven seconds to complete. I then inverted the colour on the second image, giving me 2 opposite images which I inserted into single frames at equal intervals respectively. Having done that I inserted fraction-of-a-second interfaces, tiny animated transitions, between each frame, and ran the sequence.
I’d joined a positive seven-second sub-sequence and a negative seven-second sub-sequence together into a 14-second main-sequence, which was too lengthy for purpose: Therefore I compressed the frame-intervals somewhat, and then arranged them at the higher-frequency into an animated gif so that they’d loop ad-infinitum. You can see the results of this at the bottom of the sidebar on this website at time of publication.
One of the frames that I’d created seemed to shine at me following that; which gave me a further idea to use it as a background for a cover illustration which I might build upon for a future track. The frame in question did have a piece of text on it; but I dealt with that by masking it out using colour-synchronisation. Using that as a background I them constructed a design in the form of a collage on top of it, synchronising it to the background using colour-shadowing in places. The background was also far too small; but by sequentially increasing the pixilation and frame-size in small stages I managed to attain my usual working dimension of 1400 pixels squared with relatively little loss of resolution.
Surprisingly at the same time as I was doing this I had one of my inspirational flashes and a song-chorus appeared in my head which synchronised perfectly with the design I was creating. Undeterred I wrote the chorus-lines down on my notebook and continued creating the design.
The following day I opened the design-file to do some tweaks on it when, as soon as I saw it, a verse took shape in my head. I tucked the design away neatly in the taskbar and set about writing the intro-chorus, followed by the first verse, and the following chorus, into a Microsoft Word document.
No further inspiration came to me at that point, so I recovered my design and continued to completion. – Suddenly verse 2 appeared in my mind, as if it had been actually written by the design itself. I grabbed my notebook and jotted it down…
I now find myself in a situation where I have a semi-completed song paired with a perfectly matching and completed cover illustration. This is indeed a very unusual situation to be in. Only once has anything similar happened. Perhaps I’m undergoing some kind of artistic awakening maybe? I don’t have and nor can I gather enough evidence to say ye or nay for definite at this point in my maturing process as an artist. It was a while back when, after creating a still jpeg image in a similar process to how I created the frames for the animated gif spoken of herein – by colour-inversion and phase-shifting the hue through a number of cycles – a song simply appeared in my head pertaining to the image. I’m still in the process of finishing my track *Turquoise Girl* too.
All of this creation, and more, is aimed toward the eventual release of an album, which is most likely going to come to fruition and be released during 2016. As I said somewhere else in my recent ramblings and writings; I’ve named the unfinished first draft of the album *Something To Listen To*, but just as is the case with Microsoft and their pre-release builds, the final product has very little chance of retaining that name.
Art is amazing, and it’s so heavily linked with science – physics and mathematics – on both an optical and audible level. However having said that; a quantum measurement of art is as, or perhaps more, currently implausible, as is a quantum theory of gravity… Though there must be some extremely complex equation with which to arrive at a formula for quantifying it in some subsets of its basic parts; once having defined those realistically if doing so is possible. – Who knows what advances in technology and scientific reasoning/understanding will come up with in the future? Maybe someone will come up with the necessary algorithms at some point? – That will definitely herald some major software advances in terms of AI if it happens! Just think of it; a computer as an art critic. – The mind boggles!
As a last thought, as far as this multi-faceted and somewhat heavy-going article is concerned; you might like to get yourself signed up to Sharron-Idol’s emailing list. It’s the same one as is most prevalent on the other website at sharronidol dot com – hence the corresponding URL. You’ll get a 30-minute original instrumental mix, composed by Sharron-Idol herself, for your trouble – so it’s worth doing. There are also a few other things you might be interested in which follow your joining the list; such as offers, emails from Sharron-Idol herself, maybe even advance-notifications…
So on that note I wish you well.
Don’t do anything that I wouldn’t do; but if you do – don’t get caught.