If there can be one all powerful all knowing entity, why not two?
Why not a dozen or a thousand or a million?
Why not an infinite number of omnipotent deities, each one instantly counteracting the actions of all the others, leaving us alone to muddle along as best we can in a random and probabilistic universe?
I’ve just returned from a wonderfully entertaining Amanda Palmer gig at the Northcote Social Club in Melbourne where she played with her band, the Grand Theft Orchestra. They were accompanied for three songs by an excellent horn section, two trumpets, two saxophones and a single blue trombone.
I couldn’t stop wondering why the trombone was blue. So I wrote a pome about it.
I’ve loved Pink Floyd’s classic double album and the Bob Geldoff starring movie for longer than I care to remember. Such beautiful music and emotive story telling.
When I heard that Roger Waters himself was coming to town to perform the whole show I knew I just had to spend a silly amount of money to go and see it. And wow – what a show!
The show has been updated since it was first performed back in the 70′s but the music hasn’t changed – and why would it?
The Wall is still built across the stage during the first half of the show as a metaphor for the singer’s alienation from the world. But the projection system used today is vastly superior to what they had way back when and this show used it to it’s jaw-dropping fullest complemented beautifully by scary giant inflatable puppets and a giant flying pig roaming around the arena.
And of course the master himself, Roger Waters singing and performing some of his most personal work.
It was incredibly moving at times and an honour and a privilege and an absolute delight to have seen this show.
Amanda Palmer’s “people” liked my photos from the NYE party so much they let me have a photopass to the Dresden Dolls gig in Melbourne last night. This was my first real experience in a photo-pit and I loved it!
Interestingly enough most of the rest of the army of photographers who were there looked kind of bored and miserable. I guess it can’t be much fun shooting for a living if you hate the music!
The Dresden Dolls were ably supported by the divine The Jane Austen Argument and the hilarious Bedroom Philosopher and his Awkardstra.
On Sunday 8th January the Dresden Dolls played at the Forum in Melbourne.
Earlier that afternoon they did a surprise (but heavily tweeted) acoustic performance at Melbourne’s City Square, where they met up with the incredibly earnest folks from Occupy Melbourne and climbed a tree.
I was lucky enough to spend New Year’s Eve in the divine company of Amanda Palmer, Neil Gaiman and hundreds of their closest friends, at a Trash Masquerade party in Melbourne.
Not only did I take numerous photos to remember the occasion but I was also inspired by being in the presence of my favourite writer to find a quiet corner and scribble down another short piece about my favourite enigma: Caribou Breathing.
I’ve been thinking about the power of declaration.
I became a runner after declaring I was a runner. And somehow I became one, lost over 10kgs and gained a hell of a lot of fitness.
I got a new job after declaring that I was looking for something over this side of town.
I even ended up receiving a free skydive after declaring it was something I was going to do!
Many people have witnessed putting a wish or a dream or a request out into the world and having it answered. They may call it God, or an angel or the spirit of the world.
I believe we declare the world into the shape we wish it to be. Or maybe we declare ourselves into being people who take the opportunities that we otherwise may have missed. It amounts to the same thing.
People have discovered the power of declaration time and time again and expressed it in many different ways. From “be the change you want to see in the world” to “The Secret” to the magics of Aleister Crowley to voodoo to ancient shamanic traditions to the origins of Christianity to prehistoric cave paintings showing a successful hunt. Take away the trappings and the showmanship and it’s all the same thing. Declaration.
There has to be a reason most religions have some form of origin myth which shows the universe itself coming into being through a simple declaration such as “Let there be light.”
Here’s a declaration:
I’m a writer. I’m going to write an amazing life into being for myself. I’ve done it before.
I’m doing it again.
I’m slowly starting to understand where the artistry comes into photography.
I’ve long felt that the photos I take aren’t really art because all I’m doing is pointing a camera at something that’s happening and pressing a button to capture it. Last Friday night I was taking photos of my good friends The On Fires at the Cherry Bar in Melbourne and the lighting was terrible. Far too dark and red to take the kind of colourful action shots I usually enjoy. My expectations were very low regarding the quality of the outcome.
The following day I went through my shots choosing the ones that were nearly half decent. Cropping them. Fiddling with the colour balance. Trying to decide whether this shot was better than the next shot half a second later with a slightly different expression on Max’s face.
And that’s when it hit me. I was making artistic choices! I wasn’t just capturing what was there, I was choosing, manipulating and, most importantly, putting something of myself into each shot. Give the same original photos to a different person and they would choose a different selection and make different choices regarding cropping and colouring. That’s what art is about – making choices to reflect your inner vision.
I’m an artist!
And here are the photos: The On Fires At The Cherry Bar 2011