One of the things I get up to when I can’t sleep is to make music. It traditionally started out with me trying to make retro goth music and has now currently evolved into creating soundtracks for films that don’t exist.
I love this, it gives me a theme to hang my music together and it also gives me opportunities to try different styles. Both musically and visually. The initial release has a few teething issues with mixing older work with newer work and having, what was in essence, a dull theme.
For the soundtrack I’m currently working on, there’s a whole theme around British folk history, nostalgia and darkness. And so here are some of the images I’ve been creating to help me get the mood right.
Sparkwood and 21
As you are probably aware, Sparkwood and 21 is not only a location in Twin Peaks where Laura Palmer was last seen alive, but also the name of my indie game development studio. It’s been through a lot of iterations and its current form (after moving from Amsterdam to Bristol to Bath) is making small, beautiful games.
I taught myself Blender 3D by creating a piece of art every single day for 100 days and ever since I’ve loved the software, the potential it has and the community of technical and creative people that surround it. I have even added it to my workflow as another graphic design service I offer people and it complements my skill set incredibly well. But when it comes to Sparkwood and 21 I am using it as one of the tools to help with creating video games. Along with Godot, Piskel, Krita and occasionally Unreal Engine.
What I would like out of this year long exploration throughout 2019 is two side scrolling-platform games that my children can play that don’t have any loot boxes, adverts, weird tracking and annoying interruptions.
Go take a look at Sparkwood and 21 and see what we’re currently up to.
In that order.
The reasoning? If I learn Swift then I can develop apps and software for macOS, iOS etc. Apparently, this is the future.
If I learn Python, I can use it to do practically anything. In my case: plugins for Blender, weird music stuff and possibly games.
Well, that’s the plan anyway.
And here’s the courses I’ve taken so far to point me in this direction.
As you can see, I started off learning about a game engine. Which I shall utilise later to make a computer game for each of my children.
So I’m starting with Swift and macOS development as I have ideas for a bunch of tools for creative freelancers, for electronic musicians and for augmented reality artwork in geographically accurate locations.
As you do…
I’ve been experimenting with musical soundscapes for a little while. Nothing great and exciting, but more drone repetitive sort of sounds wrapped together into a loosely-based album of sorts. Which I have decided to call OFFICIAL SOUNDTRACK.
Well, it’s out.Go check it out.
It’s not my best work, but I believe it’s better to have something out there that I can now work on developing into something new and exciting. (i.e. I’m starting work on its sequel: Make Albion Great Again, which will be some sort of Folk Horror EP with thumping dark sounds).
As I’m an annoying designer / creative type as well I’m going to be creating all the necessary artwork, branding, videos, prints and so on and so forth with the idea that it will become this weird little musical art project. And as long as it makes me happy, that’s all that really matters in the end.
If you want to find out more (or sign up to the mailing list) you can at the website skinnyfeels.band
I used to be able to get on writing. I used to be able to write. Well, I used to be able to write well. I’ve had books published (kinda) and I’ve had to write all sorts of essays, project briefs, advertising copy and whatnot.
Back in the day it was part of my creative process to write three (3) pages of absolute drivel first thing in the morning just to get all the blockages and stupid looping brain thoughts out of the way so I had clearer head that could concentrate upon using words again.
But somewhere along the way of things I feel like I’ve forgotten how to actually write. Probably because of time constraints, a change of passions and the rise of dull thumb-flicking social media. I’ve ended up consuming words and not creating them.
I can still bang out a series of statements like there’s no tomorrow. Linking them, however, into some sort of cohesive prose with a beginning, a muddle, and an end seems harder and harder to do. I guess I’m out of practice. And I feel bad about it.
Well, sorry for you, but I’m going to try and change that. So occasionally there are going to be articles on this blog that I’ve attempted to write to get better at writing and to explore various things I am interested in.
Skip over them if you want. Unless you find whatever it is more interesting than the most interesting thing you could be doing right now. But I reckon if I keep writing them, they might get better, more interesting and so on and so forth.
We’ll see. In the meantime, I’m gonna get on writing.