Archive for December, 2009

New Year Break

Posted in update with tags on December 31, 2009 by intoviews

A short intermission while 2009 shifts into 2010.

Interviews shall recommence upon the 2nd of January in the year of 2010

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David Bishop

Posted in update with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2009 by intoviews
David Bishop

David Bishop

what is your name?
David Bishop


how would you describe what you do?
I’m a writer. I’m also a part-time lecturer in creative writing at Edinburgh Napier University in Scotland, but first and foremost I’m a writer.

what are you currently working on?
I’m focusing my energies on screenwriting, specifically TV work. I write for the BBC medical drama series Doctors, and I’m developing projects for several independent production companies. I read scripts for Scottish Screen, and also write comics scripts for a character called the Phantom [a.k.a. The Ghost Who Walks], which appear in five or six different languages worldwide – but not in the UK. Various other bits and bobs, but those are the headlines.

what has had the greatest influence on your work?

Blimey, what a question! I guess reading and watching, closely followed by my experience as a journalist. I read a lot growing up, and discovered a love of pithy, fast-paced prose that still infects my work [purple prose is kryptonite to me]. I spent much of my childhood glued to the TV, developing an enduring passion for small screen storytelling. And my journalism training taught me not to be afraid of learning or asking questions – good skills for any writer.

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?

I’m not sure there are any great misconceptions about me or my work. If they do exist, there’s not much I can do about them except strive to improve. You can drive yourself crazy worry what others think or feel about your work. Far better to take responsibility for what you do – validate yourself, don’t live or die by the opinions of others.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?

Film is like a one-night stand, but TV drama is a relationship – much harder to develop and sustain, but far more rewarding over time. It can tell truths about our lives and the world around us. TV drama can dig far deeper into characters and their stories than any film. But it can also be lazy, slipshod and – worst of all – boring. TV drama with nothing to say is like eating Ryvita for every meal of the day – filling, but flavourless.

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?

New technology is revolutionising the means of production and distribution. Low cost HD cameras and editing software mean anyone can make a movie or a web drama, but that’s no guarantee of quality. Email and the web make research much easier, but also encourage laziness. If you want to build real relationships or discover truths, you’ll find them out in the world – not on your computer screen. The ability to tell a good story well always triumphs in the long run, no matter how technology affects a medium. It’s execution that counts, not the method by which a story reaches you.


what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?
I was given this piece of advice by Edinburgh writer-director Adrian Mead and I happily pass it on to you: TALENT + EFFORT + STRATEGY = SUCCESS. The more of each element you bring to the equation, the greater the results.

where can we find you online?

Visit my blog at http://viciousimagery.blogspot.com

what are you reading at the moment?

Just finished “Hello,” Lied The Agent by Ian Gurvitz, a scathingly honest memoir by a Hollywood TV writer. Halfway through The City & The City by China Mieville, a genre-bending SF crime thriller novel. And I’ve been staring at a photographic novel called Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals by Christopher Payne – gorgeous yet haunting.

what are you listening to at the moment?

New Zealand funk noir outfit Dimmer [particularly their first album, I Believe You Are a Star]; the austere yet heart-breaking collaboration The Glare by David McAlmont and Michael Nyman; and some trippy lovers’ dubrock on Me’Shell Ndegeocello’s glorious Comfort Woman.

anything else we should know?

Professionalism trumps gifted amateurs. Don’t burn bridges with the napalm of your own insecurities. And never, ever eat anything bigger than your head.

Bryan Cassiday

Posted in interviews, news, update, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2009 by intoviews

Bryan Cassiday

Bryan Cassiday

what is your name?
My name is Bryan Cassiday.

how would you describe what you do?
I write thrillers.

what are you currently working on?
I’m working on a thriller about a neighbor who may not be what he seems.

what has had the greatest influence on your work?
Good books have had the greatest influence on my work. Some of these books are Stendhal’s “Charterhouse of Parma,” Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises,” any of Jack Higgins’s thrillers, Forsythe’s “Day of the Jackal,” Graham Green’s “This Gun for Hire” and “Ministry of Fear.”

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?
There is a misconception that thrillers are not good books, but merely genre potboilers. The example of Shakespeare easily refutes this obtuseness. Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” is a great thriller and a classic. The same could be said of his magnificent “Julius Caesar.”

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?
The advantage of the thriller genre is that it allows an author to explore character and at the same time to build a plot and conflicts that lead to an exciting and satisfying denouement. I don’t think the thriller genre has weaknesses except maybe that the writer can’t allow himself to be too humorous–or you’ll end up with something like Robert Ludlum’s wretched “Road to Omaha.”

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?
In terms of technology, I as a writer use a computer instead of a typewriter. On the other hand, I still frequently write longhand, despite the fact that I have a laptop.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?
This may sound presumptuous of me, but my greatest piece of advice would be not to heed anyone’s criticism–either negative or positive. The way I see it, nobody knows anything when it comes to writing. I also reject the advice that you should write about what you know. In fact, I would go so far as to say that you should write about what you don’t know, in other words, what you can imagine. As Einstein said, imagination is more important than knowledge.

where can we find you online?
You can find me online at www.BryanCassiday.com. You can find all my books, both “Fete of Death” and “Blood Moon: Thrillers and Tales of Terror,” on Amazon.

what are you reading at the moment?
I am currently reading Vince Flynn’s thriller “Pursuit of Honor.” I still think “Consent to Kill” is his best book.

what are you listening to at the moment?
I’m listening to Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin.

S. A. Griffin

Posted in interviews, news, poetry, update, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2009 by intoviews

SA Griffin

SA Griffin

what is your name?

S.A. Griffin, S.A., Dad, honey, baldie, old man, dude, yo.

how would you describe what you do?

I fail well.

what are you currently working on?

A groovy thing, living, dying, the leftover chicken in the fridge, chasing my wife around the apartment, laughing more often, The Poetry Bomb. I bought an old military practice bomb. Cutting it open, filling it full of poetry from around the world, painting it up real nice like an old hot rod, then taking it on tour beginning in late April 2010.

what has had the greatest influence on your work?

The double helix, the binary frontier.

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?

Kindness and stupidity are synonymous.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?

Depends upon the medium and/or the work. As an actor, I am pigment. As a poet, I am the brush. As a performer, I am the audience.

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?

Once I gave up cave dwelling and decided to roll with wheels on my dreams, it has been everything. Since the summer of Natural Born Killers in 1994, the great majority of everything that I have been a part of in regards to writing/publishing has been directly a result of, or connected in some way to the Internet.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?

Listen. Concentration of energy away from your self is the source of all creativity.

where can we find you online?

Hanging at the corner of zero and one singing hallelujah anyway, or at one of the following websites:

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/books/2009/12/the-poetry-bomb-is-empty.html

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Los-Angeles-CA/The-Poetry-Bomb/171728218546

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1768073198/the-poetry-bomb

what are you reading at the moment?

What I am typing in response to this question. My cat’s eyes. The news today, oh boy. Into it, out loud, between the lines. Poetry submissions for The Poetry Bomb. Lots of poetry tags on Facebook, email, obituaries, cooking directions. The Atlantic, Beatitude Golden Anniversary 1959-2009 edited by Latif Harris and Neeli Cherkovski, The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb, Carl Jung’s Red Book (I can dream, can’t I?).

what are you listening to at the moment?

My neighbor coming up the stairs, the faint call of the television from the other room, the muffled chatter of another television leaking thru the walls of our apartment, my wife talking to the cat, children playing outside my window, somebody hammering a board, a plane flying overhead, passing cars, the tapping of the keyboard, the hum of the Mac, the voice in the front of my head that never stops talking back.

anything else we should know?

That the world is going to end in 1975. At least that’s what the acid burnout, born again Christian, hippie, teenage parent neighbors that lived behind the house told me in the spring of 1971.

David Farmerie

Posted in film, interviews, news, photography, update with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2009 by intoviews

david farmerie

david farmerie

Migrant Tobacco Worker #1

Migrant Tobacco Worker #1

Believe

Believe

Night Train Through Folkston

Night Train Through Folkston

how would you describe what you do?

My work is about telling the story, regardless of whether I am shooting a documentary, a fine art piece, or a portrait, my desire is to reveal, and to tell, the story.

For much of my 32-year career, I grappled with being a photographer. Even though that was my profession, and my passion, I was also very proficient as a writer, a lecturer, and a filmmaker – and I was equally as passionate about all, while I was engaged in them. However, this always created an internal struggle, and that is when I began my quest to find out what I was. After years of searching, I realized – in a very bright-light kind of moment, that I was none of those things – that they were only my tools. In fact… I Am, a Storyteller.

I also feel – have felt for most of my career, that I also have a responsibility to tell the stories that I feel, deep within, are stories worth being told. My desire is to tell the stories that can help to affect change – a positive change, within the world. My desire also, especially with regard to my documentaries, is to show the dignity of those who comprise our world, and to shed light in order to celebrate what we, so much of the time, see only as our differences.

what are you currently working on?

Currently I am working on several documentaries, all in various stages of completion. The documentary, closest to completion, is titled: Roadside Redemption. It is an exploration of the influx in Christianity that is springing up across the highways of our country. This documentary explores the reasons behind this influx, but also delves much deeper – allowing each viewer to draw their own conclusions and to begin a dialog within themselves. The documentary will be released as a large format, photographic exhibition with accompanying videos, in January 2010.

A second documentary, titled: An American Tradition, is a photographic documentary about the traditions of family tobacco farming. My subjects, all from Robertson County, Tennessee, because it is this region that has produced the world’s Dark-Fired Tobacco for centuries, and many of the farms have been farmed by the same families for well over 100 years.


what has had the greatest influence on your work?

This is a difficult question for me to answer concisely, as so many things have had the greatest influences. I suppose, first and foremost, my exposure to so many cultures and people. This, above all else, has caused within me a deep desire to share this with others – in a hope that people will then be able to see those around them… and around the world, in a different – more positive and accepting light.

Also my years in Photojournalism shaped me greatly, as they showed me, first hand, the skewing and half-truths that shaped a great bias within our media. That experience, probably more than any other, sent me on a quest to find the truth in each story, and tell it – completely and allow the viewer to decide.

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?

Misconceptions? What misconceptions?

Seriously though, I don’t really know the answer to this question. I’m sure that there are numerous misconceptions, but I truly have no idea what they are.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?

I suppose I see the main strength of photography is that it is still, for the most part, considered realism – and perceived, by most, as being the truth. And now, with the incredible advancements in digital photography, my medium has become immediate – almost instantaneous – which is a great asset on many fronts but, especially when I am working with indigenous people, as they can see – immediately, how I am portraying them and… I can print out an image, on the spot, and leave it with them.

For me, however, I find great frustration, (with my medium), when I am creating a fine art piece – and this is where I find its weakness. Granted, advancements in technology have given me incredible tools but… there is still something that I envy about the painter.

The ability to create an image, many times an image that never truly existed in reality, though a process of transferring thought and emotion into colors of paints and brush strokes applied on a surface. This, to me, may be one of life’s truest orgasms.


how has technology impacted upon the work you do?

Technology has had, and continues to have, incredible impacts on the work I do. I am still an old film guy, at heart, but the advent, and continued advancements in digital technologies, has allowed me to do my work even better – and far more immediate. It’s interesting, I was just thinking about this one aspect of change earlier today. In the past, I would shoot an assignment, have the film processed (for some assignments at least), and then send the images off to the client. Delivery memos had to be sent and signed. Insurance and shipping charges were incurred, and there always existed he fear that the images would get lost or damaged en route.

Now, I shoot the assignment, download it to my laptop, do a rough edit (and sometimes not), then upload them to my server and notify the client via an email – with a link for the download – and never does the image leave my possession now.

These advancements have also created many new opportunities for experimentation – both from a cost saving factor, and from a tools factor.

New technologies, aside from photographic, have created vast opportunities to connect to people with my work – opportunities that were never available before these advancements.

One of the most amazing things, about these technologies, is that they are truly still in their infancies. Every day I discover something new, even with what has already been developed – as do thousands of others, and we are all able to share these discoveries – again, with immediacy, if we choose, with millions of others. It is like one giant experimental laboratory. It is a most incredible time to be alive.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?

Be true to yourself and to your passion, (which should be one and the same). Never compromise, if it compromises your integrity, and “always” live from your truth.

where can we find you online?

Everywhere! http://www.davidfarmerie.com is the best place to find a bit about me. I can also be found on the social networking sites – which can be linked to via the links on my website.

what are you reading at the moment?

Everybody Who Was Anybody: The Biography of Gertrude Stein, by Janet Hobhouse.

Brida, by Paulo Coelho.

The Nature of Photographs, by Stephen Shore.

Criticizing Photographs, by Terry Barrett.

what are you listening to at the moment?

Jethro Tull: The Best of Acoustic, and Rachmaninov Piano Concertos.

anything else we should know?

I could probably spend hours – maybe days.

Tammy Foster Brewer

Posted in interviews, news, poetry, update, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2009 by intoviews
tammy foster brewer

tammy foster brewer


what is your name?

Tammy Foster Brewer (formerly Trendle)

how would you describe what you do?

Mostly, I drive.  And when I drive, I listen to music.  And when I’m stopped in traffic, I look up through the top of my windshield at the sky.  Sometimes, when I do this, I feel like I’m going to be swallowed by tall buildings.  When I can find a pen, or sit at a keyboard, I write this all down.  And then, poem.

what are you currently working on?

Preparing for a trial at work (I’m a litigation paralegal).  Fighting traffic.  Lingering a little longer with my husband.  Taking a deep breath when my 6-year-old son tells me I’m being angrily.  Writing poems in-between.

Also, I have a chapbook out with Verve Bath Press titled, “No Glass Allowed,” and poems in the current issues of Rattle and Stirring.


what has had the greatest influence on your work?

Marriage.  Divorce.  Re-marriage.  Having children.  My husband (the poet, Robert Lee Brewer).  Music.  And always love: the seeking, the loss, the find.

what is the greatest misconception about you or your work?

That poetry is too scholarly or high-brow or that non-poets cannot appreciate or relate to it.  Whenever I give a poem to one of my non-poet friends, it’s like giving my son a plate full of vegetables and watching his reaction when he realizes he likes it.  Often, people tell me they like my work because it is real and raw.  My goal is to make it accessible.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work

in?

Over here is a flower.  Over there is something broken on the sidewalk.  Inside there is a desk, four walls, a computer.  A person without windows.

Poetry is the light between all of these things, and also the dark.  Its weakness: the fact that it appears only a few shelves in the bookstore.

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?

Greatly.  Online poetry journals give access to more readers.  Online forums give writers a chance to workshop and share their work and be a part of an artistic community.  Where I’m sitting right now, a thrown shoe would not hit a another poet.  But I can virtually poke hundreds of them online.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?

Never forget you are a poet.

where can we find you online?

You can find my chapbook, sample poems, and a review by Aleathia Drehmer here:

http://www.wordsdance.com/noglassallowed.html

I’m also on facebook as Tammy Foster Brewer.  And you can also email me at tammyfbrewer@gmail.com

what are you reading at the moment?

Whatever my 6-year-old son is reading — currently it’s a beginning chapter book called “Sir Fartsalot Hunts The Booger.”  Also, lots of Shel Silverstein poems.  (I love children’s books!)

I’m also reading “Plus Shipping,” an older book of poems by Bob Hicock (found in a used bookstore over the weekend).  And a book of essays by Dana Gioia called “Can Poetry Matter?”

what are you listening to at the moment?

My favorite song right now is “Love Letter to Japan” by The Bird & The Bee

anything else we should know?

See that guy over there, the one who sings along with you in the car, and dances in the dining room after dinner. Who falls asleep with his back to you but wakes up with arms around.  Who sometimes has food in his beard and holes in his t-shirt.  Don’t ever forget to share the pieces with him, especially the smallest parts.

Kilford, The Music Painter

Posted in art, interviews, music, news, update with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2009 by intoviews

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE DURING THE WOODENTOPS1 - pic by Guy Levy

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE DURING THE WOODENTOPS1 - pic by Guy Levy

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE WITH BAABA MAAL - picture credit Guy Levy

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE WITH BAABA MAAL - picture credit Guy Levy

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE WITH ERNEST RANGLIN AT RONNIE SCOTTS - pic credit Guy Levy

KILFORD PAINTING LIVE WITH ERNEST RANGLIN AT RONNIE SCOTTS - pic credit Guy Levy

what is your name?

Kilford, The Music Painter

how would you describe what you do?

I paint music. I see colours when I hear music so I paint those colours live alongside bands during their gigs, or people ask me to paint single songs for them, or I sketch single songs. Other than that I do a lot of shoe shopping, googling and drinking a lot of cardamom tea, I smoke a lot, think even more, I get my arse kicked in the gym and eat a lot of peanut butter (it’s a power food apparently)

what are you currently working on?

Painting wise I’m painting a few commissioned pieces inspired by single songs including Halo, Empire State of Mind, Heroes and Bad Romance. I’m also sorting out my first ‘One Love’ music painting night at The Social in Feb http://www.thesocial.com I’m proper excited about that, I painted with The Charlatans, Magic Numbers and Saint Etienne at the club for the 10th Anniversay last month…it was rockin. Plus I’m designing the pilot of our Music Painter Documentary which is fun. What else, oh yeah launching an online store which focuses on selling top quality art for stupidly low prices all in the name of “Art for Everyone” so anyone can be a collector of great art for the price of two packs of cigarette and a vodka redbull!

what has had the greatest influence on your work?
Music is my number 1 influence. But if you mean influence in terms of what I create etc, then its people, either via commissions or Facebook people, I sketch lots of stuff based on facebook fan requests, so they influence what I create and I dig it, they are fab.

What is the greatest misconception about you or your work?
I don’t think there are any misconceptions, it does what it says on the tin. The Music Painter, Paints Pictures of Music…it’s not the Cat Painter or the Landscape Painter or the Paints Anything Painter. The Music Painter, nice and simple.

what do you see as the main strengths and weaknesses of the medium you work in?

I use acrylic. Main strength is the dry time, it has to dry quickly after a gig, basically in the time it takes to pull the set down. Weakness, is that it doesn’t completely accommodate my colour spectrum, I feel restricted with blues specifically. I used to use a metallic blue and the manufacturers stopped making it. I suggested they call it Music Painter Blue and re-launch it but it hasn’t happened yet.

how has technology impacted upon the work you do?

it hasn’t impacted on my work, it is at the centre and is critical to all of my work. Any artist that isn’t interested in using modern technology can stay in the last millennium as far as I am concerned. The challenge I have, is that we are working on technology that doesn’t exist yet, so trying to get companies to make it is 1) a nightmare 2) bloody expensive.

what’s the greatest piece of advice you would like to pass on?
two things 1) Fuck em, paint what you want to paint and don’t let anyone tell you differently 2) be what you want to become

where can we find you online?

I’m on my facebook site far too much for my own good http://www.facebook.com/themusicpainter i twitter too much at http://www.twitter.com/themusicpainter plus if you want to look through my work, there are over 700 pieces online and all of them are free to download in high resolution from http://www.themusicpainter.com

what are you reading at the moment?
Twitters, no books at the moment…I like reading real lives in real time.

what are you listening to at the moment?
right now, I’m in the studio so I am focused on these Halo, Empire State of Mind, Heroes and Bad Romance. I have to engulf myself in the song, I have to know every part of it just as you know every part of your lovers body.

anything else we should know?
…I use ear buds twice a day and I shouldn’t, I bite my nails, I like Guinness, I’m addicted to Swarovski and anything that sparkles, I have dents on my thumbs because I use my blackberry too much, I love brown sauce on most things and I don’t like to sleep.

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