“Imagination is more important than knowledge”…(Einstein)
This site is designed to connect my collage art, music and photography, thoughts and interests into a coherent whole. I started getting into photography seriously in about 2005 after buying an old Nikon FM2 camera in London and experimenting with black & white photography and taking a couple of courses. When that camera gave up the ghost I decided to go digital and get a Canon 400D which I’ve pretty much used for everything since. I guess my specialist areas are music photos at gigs and festivals, road trips, city breaks, graffiti and abandoned places and ephemera, the things time has forgotten…
I started making collages after seeing exhibitions in London by the german artists Hannah Hoch at The Whitechapel Gallery and Kurt Schwitters at Tate Modern a few years ago. The wonderful collage images I saw both fascinated and inspired me to make my own collages. I’ve always been interested in pop art and popular culture, film and music and artists such as Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg and Peter Blake. Subsequently i’ve become aware of other great collage artists like Jake Tilson, Pauline Boty, Linder Sterling and Robert Mars and the photomontage of Aleksander Rodchenko (“art is anything you can get away with” Warhol).
I have become a collector of images, old books, magazines, postcards, packaging, tickets and stamps. It’s great to rescue discarded ephemera, found images and create something new that is visually striking, creating art from the abandoned or neglected. I often start with an acrylic background using bright, vivid colours and add pieces until something resonates and starts to take shape. The juxtaposition of images can create new meaning.
I like photographing abandoned places and urban graffiti and distressed surfaces, the fragments of everyday life, these details are integral to the collages I make. It’s important not to think too hard about composition and not be afraid to experiment or try something a little crazy if it’s not working. The hardest part is knowing when to stop.
I also play guitar and sing in Garage rock band Pablo Alto, which initially started out as a solo project but has now mutated into a shit-kicking 3-piece band. We play a mix of styles, experimenting with Garage Psych and Post-punk sounds, mainly our own songs with a few covers thrown in. Influences range from classic Psych bands like The 13th Floor Elevators and The Stooges to The Velvet Underground to The Fall and Joy Division. The first band I ever saw was The Clash at Manchester Apollo and I’ve never forgotten the life-changing impact it had on me…one hell of a gig…
I’ve got various part-time jobs which keep me occupied when i’m not playing guitar and writing songs. My main work is for Ledbury Poetry Festival and through that I’ve discovered and met some amazing new poets and got into 60’s beat poetry. I’m drawn to anyone who’s a creative free spirit and likes to bend the rules and step outside of convention. It’s important to question what we see, take a step back and look at things from a different angle or perspective. As Bukowski said “Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead”… .