Thursday, 12 January 2012

I'm useless, but not for long. The future is coming on

Woah... where am I? Well, bizarrely, in Lichfield it would appear. Somehow I ended up living in a neat and tidy little city with good food, old buildings, a huge cathedral and a herb garden belonging to Charles Darwin's grandfather. Samuel Johnson invented the dictionary here - yup it's that kinda place - and the other day I sat in a sea of white hair at the Garrick Theater listening to a talk about visiting Burma and planning my escape.

It's not that I don't like it here, but I've just been made redundant from a job I took building computer games for school kids, and have managed to save up some money to go travelling with. Sadly this might mean the end of my band unless we form some kind of virtual counterparts and perform as the Gorillaz. But right now things seem to be tough in the creative industries. The music industry is saturated and no one seems to be getting by, and things don't seem much better for the film industry or the arts.

A while back I worked with the charming Martin Gooch (a filmmaker who has worked on East Enders, Harry Potter and Big Brother) and his words are ringing in my ears... When asked about his choice of 'career', Martin (dressed in scruffy jeans, loose T-shirt and with a foppish non-descript haircut) had said "It's not a choice of career, it's a choice of lifestyle.". It's a quote that clearly demonstrates the creative person's relationship between what would be considered work and how they live.

In a recent interview for Birmingham's Fierce Festival, independent arts curator Charlie Levine's advice on 'making a living in the arts in Birmingham' was "find a part time job... the arts won’t be a 9-5.".

So before I pour yet more money into my creative pursuits, and find other sources of income, I feel like it's time to take a break and regroup. A break to Mexico and Central America.

So for now I ain't happy, I'm feeling glad. I got sunshine, in a bag. I'm useless, but not for long. The future is coming on. Is coming on... Is coming on... Is coming on...


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