Mix & master

I'm certain they mean "route" rather than "root"

However, taking meaning from Australian slang, the idea that one can root to perfect a track is fantastic!

How to avoid Corona

Aunty Jeeno's Words of Wisdom from Arts North West on Vimeo.

35 years of Robocop

On Twitter I saw that Robocop is now 35 years old

I remember seeing the film in the cinema while in high school and enthusing about it to my friends.

Then, when it came out on video, I was unable to watch it again for years as it'd been reclassified as R-rated!

Unlike the R-rating shown in the US advert here, Australia's R is restricted to anyone under 18.

Anyway, I showed the film to my kids last year since they are all in high school.

It stands up well, despite the decades and development of various technologies -- including police robots.

The cynical idea that police service might be privatised now seems prescient in light of their role enforcing mining activities within Australia.

Artists wanted

Red Earth Ecology is looking to commission four local artists for the "Leeton Memories" project, which will transform reminisces of older residents into shop front displays

"Our aim is to work with people to develop a series of displays based on interviews about observations of environmental change," says project coordinator Jason Richardson.

"We have a small budget to cover materials and contribute something toward the time of the four contributors."

Edited extracts from recorded interviews with longtime residents will prompt and inform a series of shop front installations and be linked to these displays using QR codes.

"The idea is that you'll be able to hear a recorded commentary from older residents and that will inform the experience for viewers seeing the artworks," says Jason.

"We hope people will think broadly about what materials can go into making a display and the budget should help to realise their ideas."

The Leeton Memories project will raise the profile of local art and also aims to help the artists involved to develop their own projects.

Each display will be promoted with a profile of the contributors and discussion about the themes raised in the interview.

"We will also share our CASP application for this project with the artists, so they can get an understanding of what goes into a successful funding proposal."

Afterwards Red Earth Ecology will consider assisting with grant applications from the artists for the development of future projects in our region where they relate to the aims of that organisation.

"Red Earth Ecology was incorporated to enable projects that link people to the landscape, whether through plant regeneration activities or cultural practices like making artworks," says Jason.

"There's also a need for pathways in the Riverina so artists can develop local projects and we're willing to provide guidance."

"We want this Leeton Memories project to be the start of something that will create new memories in Leeton for years to come."

Leeton Memories is supported by Western Riverina Arts and Create NSW through funding from the NSW Government. 

Screw Youtube

Youtube's automation of copyright claims should be questioned

Look at what's happened to my video this morning.

A recording of my drumming, in fact two recordings of my drumming layered together, has been monetised by a company claiming I'm infringing on their copyright.

Someone else is collecting ad revenue from my material based on an automated response!

Youtube is facilitating this spurious claim and I think their system needs to be scrutinised.

The Big One

Couldn't resist sharing this image, which combines two of my interests.

Art is for everyone

While there's definitely space for professional artists, I think art should be for amateurs

If reading Julia Cameron's book The Artist's Way taught me one thing, it's that creativity is our human birthright.

There are almost as many ways to make art as there are to be creative and creativity is where innovation happens.

Yet I see my kids increasingly losing interest in learning to make art, partly because the model of education is based on emulating the teacher.

We need to foster creative expression in our communities since it seems as though their individual differences are disappearing as the world shrinks.

I believe everyone should have an expressive habit or two.

These outlets reflect individual experiences by channeling passing thoughts and dreams while refining techniques -- maybe even inventing new ones.

The problem with making a thing professional is that one ends up becoming a manager.

This is something I learned at university, even without studying management.

When I worked there it was kinda bizarre to observe that academics would move into management roles.

These were people whose passion had led them to specialise in fields that became increasingly obscure as they got more qualified.

There was a tension between managing students while achieving research outcomes.

Yet all the time they were researching their expertise, the university would dangle jobs in management.

Career progression for many probably stalled with the casualisation of the workforce (driven by management consultants), so the only job security that seemed available was moving into something managing the casual staff.

I feel like I've seen the same phenomena in the arts world, as one-time artists become administrators and consultants.

It makes sense as one has to learn to justify the passion to create by developing a business case to apply for grants and navigate processes like running a board, buying insurance, marketing creative outcomes, etc.

The drawback is it becomes isolating as artists share less of their inspiration, which is the stuff that makes their creative output meaningful to audiences.

As an audience I don't want to be told something is important, I want to know why it's important to the artist.

Human interest stories are engaging and the best teachers make it feel as though you're on the journey with them, discovering the outcomes as they explain their development.

In some ways it seems a similar outcome to the academics who no longer teach their specialisations, since it's the process that reveals the intricacies of a subject to an increasingly educated population.

However, the qualifications in our communities are now increasingly administrative ones.

As a result, we see the justification for creative practices framed in terms of economic values.

Maybe the move toward government budgets recognising well-being will see a new framing for the arts?

Winter warmth

It's a guilty pleasure but I love being able to sit by a fire during winter

Part of me regrets putting smoke into the local environment and burning logs that have the potential to be habitat. 

Another part recognises the awe that stirred my ancestors as I look into the flames and let their flickering light guide my thoughts.

My family know I'm strict about when we'll have a fire and the general rule is the forecast maximum needs to be less than 14C or the minimum less than 4C.