The Young People of Inspiration Aspiration

April 19, 2014 by

It was supposed to be simple.
But teaching is hard.
So we spent several weeks under the watchful eye of one of the Bnb writers, who IS a full time secondary school teacher. With him we prepared “Lesson Plans”.
Over two days we planned to present four workshops. Story-telling, character development, self expression and creative technology. This event was to be called Inspiration Aspiration

Characters - Wumi

It was supposed to be simple.
It was supposed to be about the art. We were supposed to ask things like “What can inspire?” “What do you aspire?” “What is your desire?” and then say something like “Cool. Now put it down in poetry, paintings and anything passionate.” We were to discover what made them tick and channel those energies towards creativity.
Impart our wisdom, make art and go home.

It was supposed to be simple.
What was supposed to be a group of about 20 young people turned out to be 3. Only 3 people… and that sucked!
Mentally telling yourself that you CAN teach, finding the time to build a workshop, flying over from Germany (Not all workshops leaders were British), all that hard work for only 3 people… 3 people.
But then, that was what was so simple.

IA

He liked to write stories. He played video games and watched Anime. Admitting to us that he struggled to understand our world sometimes, the intentions of some people, the contradictions of our actions and our values, the complexities of human psychology and the dark places it can take us. The kids not even 18 yet.

She loved fashion, sketching dress after dress, she could translate ideas into a wearable form.
After being diagnosed with cancer at 15, she openly told us of her suffering, the pain so indescribable she’s not sure how she ever got through it and of how she now plans to live with purpose. We were in awe.

Drawing

And, last but definitely not least, he was madly obsessed with Sonic the Hedgehog, even making fan comics. On a scale so large it simply took our breath away. Four or five sketchbooks full of Sonic drawings, the whole Sonic gang in fact, story-telling included, it was a comic, after all. He admitted that the the time dedicated to developing a talent of this degree came from anxiety’s in trying to make friends and avoid bullies as a young child.

Suddenly, all those sob-stories on X-factor meant something to me. These were real people, with real issues and all they wanted to do was create.
Inspirational people with aspirations.
It always was, and still is, purely about them.

Simple.

Adeeb

Dendritic Decalcomania – Planning Art

November 14, 2013 by

I’ve been reading a lot of Chuck Palahniuk lately. I just finished reading Snuff. Along with all his other books, it got me thinking about how on earth anyone could set out to write such a bizzare work of fiction. A dark and bleak imagination probably helps, but in general, when someone begins writing a book, do you think that the end product is ever what they expected it to be?

  

Dendritic decalcomania is a process of creating very intricate, almost fractaline images through automatic printing. Paint is applied thinly to a smooth surface and a sheet of paper is rolled over the paint. As it sticks to the paper, branch-like streaks of paint remain on the page. The result is different with every print and beyond the thickness and viscosity of the paint, and the speed and pressure at which the paper is rolled across the paint, there isn’t much for the artist to control.

Creating work this way is really, really interesting. It’s difficult to create any consistent images, but it’s hard to be a perfectionist over a technique that illicits very little opportunity to be precise. It’s quite a theraputic way of creating beautiful images.

I wonder if there is some way to apply this kind of technique to writing? I think it#s much harder to form words by accident, but perhaps concepts or ideas could be generated that way. Or how about creating a decalcomania print and tracing a scenario from the random images? Perhaps that way the imagination could be jogged in an unpredictable direction and guided towards something more bizarre, something beyond the aspirations that can hinder the creative process.

They say that, to a child with a hammer, everything is a nail. Sometimes ideas can be like hammers. They can restrict your actions to only the obvious. Being obvious isn’t much fun at all.

The Morning Monster

November 5, 2013 by

I was reminded recently of a mini project I did a good number of years ago. It was a simple idea. My brother didn’t like going to school much so in the morning, to cheer him up, I’d draw him a monster. I came across the morning monsters in the old sketchbook. It reminded me of the fun aspect of playing with a theme, for no particular reason, with no particular goal, just purely for the purpose of creating and enjoying creating.

I haven’t done much drawing recently and I think I need to start again. When focusing on writing it’s easy to get stuck on one project and let that put a stop to everything else. Worrying that not having enough time will mean I do something less-than-perfect, so I end up doing nothing… it’s not productive. And I want to get out of this funk of having ideas but not wanting to develop them in a hurry in case I break them. So, I’m going to resurrect the morning monsters. One per day. They might be a bit rubbish, but never mind. Hopefully doing something little every day will get me back into some kind of creative rhythm. If you want to see, they’ll be here.

frustrated creative to effective creative (Part 1)…

August 12, 2013 by

…The good news is last week I finished the first draft of my latest writing. The bad news is this week I find myself in a self-doubt man hole. This happens to me every six months. The doubt finds a way in, takes hold, and starts to pull me down. Self-doubt left unchecked stops me writing. It sends me into a spiral of fear, anxiety and creative panic.

This recent phase is still painful, but this time I’m using self-doubt to my advantage.

Self-doubt is a natural part of writing. Like the buzz I get when I’m in a good writing place, doubt is just another facet of creating. To resist against it is useless.

Creative doubt makes me creatively stronger. It challenges me. Self-doubt forces me to look at my commitment to my writing. Every six months I ask myself, do I want to keep writing? Every six months the answer is yes.

And so it goes that actually, self-doubt is my friend.

Stay gold ya’ll.

Fay.

*I wrote ‘and the moral of the story is’ (a tale of perseverance, self-belief and commitment) back in 2012 when I was in a self-doubt slump. Thanks to Marc Olivent for the artwork.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Get to the choppa… DO IT NOW!!!

June 10, 2013 by

“Doing it now” is so underrated.

I’ve always wanted to travel, visit the world, eat new foods, meet wacky people. So why haven’t I?

I’m writing this blog right now not because I have to (though I do) but mainly because I feel like it. As you may have noticed from the previous blog, this is kind of who i’m becoming.

Get naked, cover yourself in blood and Scream. Don’t ask. Just Do It.

For the past 2 months, I have spent my weekends being away from my closer knit web of friends and family and amongst friends i don’t see as much and, well, complete strangers.

It’s been a blast and as I reminisce over my recent experiences i’ve learnt something about myself. I often dull my enjoyment by reminding myself that I have something productive to be doing, something to be writing, someone to be meeting or whatever.

As I let these thoughts fester and kill my buzz I begin the arduous task of getting myself back into shape. For us writers, it always seems to feel like no one understands how important it is for us to make sure we write everyday; so I slap myself into doing so as nobody else will.

But what about that list of dreams? It’s an awkward balance this is and to be completely honest, i’m succeeding. Not that it needs to be said but, to feel like i ought to be saving for something or putting off a particular pleasure is often negative. Just Do It. This philosophy is how B’n’B Studios came into existence and it’s worked out alright so far…

I was in Manchester this weekend. I didn’t see a naked Wayne Rooney but it was fun.

Adeeb

Politics & Beer

May 29, 2013 by

Am I doing what I want? Is this all just some complex form of politics that I can’t get my head around? Or is this all just business?

It’s been a couple of weeks since we closed our latest exhibition and as usual we’re proud of what we’ve achieved overall. Of course there are things that we would have done differently in hindsight, there are mistakes we failed to learn from previous projects and we’ve learnt stuff, tonnes of stuff.

I’ve learnt stuff, and now I’m a little bit scared. I’m surrounded by talent and what’s amazing is that, in the five years that we’ve been doing this the ambition of those around me has grown (some great ideas and projects in the pipeline) and the work we create is getting us more and more noticed, which is great. So what’s scary?

Well, there’s a certain expectation that comes with all of that. It’s not expectation from critics that worry me, but expectation from people we would like to work with, expectation from people that want things sold and expectation from art people (Curator’s, art collectors, people of that elk) that understand the “politics” of this world a whole lot better than ourselves.

My head dived into a state of panic. “Am I doing things right?” “Did I say the right thing to that person?” “Should I offer him a glass of wine? What if he’s a Beer man. I hate wine. Why do we never serve Beer at these things?!”

 

Not bad.

 

I needed to calm down. I needed to do something creative. I needed a beer. In an odd turn of events I ended up doing something a little bit extreme. I disappeared (only for a little while, look at me… blogging). Not only did I disappear, I tried something I have never done before in my life. I tried my hand at remixing.

I’m a writer. What the hell do I know about Music? (A teeny bit to be completely honest with you, I’m learning the ukelele) I’m no Bach but that’s what I found liberating. No expectation placed on me from anyone, not even myself. As a result I would toil away at my new found hobby for hours on end without worrying about what reaction this piece of work might get. I grinded without worrying about if what I had done would be worthy of the public’s ears. It felt like Beddow ‘n’ Battini Studios when we first started.

And that was all I needed, really. Forget the politics.

My song is shit. Who cares? I’m doing what I want.

Adeeb

 

 

 

 

 

Inspiration Time!

April 30, 2013 by

Here’s a quick fun-ish fact for you: Did you know that you can walk from Trafalgar Square to the Cutty Sark without crossing a single road? Sure, it adds 11 miles to your journey and it means crossing the Thames twice and going under it once, but it is possible. As someone who doesn’t drive and has a recently developed distrust of bicycles (that’s a story for another day), I find that kind of interesting.

Image

Just over a year ago, walking around London started to become less of an I-can’t-afford-the-bus thing for me and more of an I-might-as-well thing. On more than one occasion I’ve walked from home in Hackney to work in Shepherd’s Bush – a decision I constantly regret during the 3-hour journey, but I always kind of get something out of it in the end. An idea. A joke. A story. Read the rest of this entry »

…We see it all differently.

April 29, 2013 by

The #100WordPilgrimage is around the corner. More on that later.

“How do we both know what smells nice if we have different DNA?”

This was the question posed to me by my over imaginative, eight year old little brother.

Stumped. I was Stumped. Where did this question come from? What the hell was he on about?

I was picking him up from school when he inquired and it wasn’t until after a massive family bedtime debate that we understood what he was getting at.

“How can you be sure that the red I see, is the same red that you see?” I don’t think we ever answered him.

Do you see what I see?

For some reason I linked this question with a recent conversation I had with a friend about “The Isle of Dogs”. I moved out of the place for university and by the time I’d graduated so had the rest of my family. It was so saddening. I love the Isle of Dogs. I struggle to think of a place I’m more fond of.

But my conversation had helped me realise that not everybody agrees (>Facepalm< DUH!).

BUT THE ISLE OF DOGS IS BEAUTIFUL!! I’ve laughed there, I’ve cried there. I’ve been both invincible and beyond conquered there. I have an attachment to the place like no other. This is understandable. What I still don’t understand is why my friend doesn’t “like” it. I just have to accept that we all see it differently.

And to me, this is what makes Bnb’s #100WordPilgrimage so great. Each artist and writer takes themselves to a part of London and expresses their experiences THEIR own way… How THEY see it… smelling it with THEIR own DNA.

 

#100WordPilgrimage: Journey from East to South

May 11th to 24th

Southwark Studios Rich House,

4th Floor, 40 Crimscott Street,

London,

SE1 5TE

 

Adeeb

Being the Little Man

March 29, 2013 by

Be the little man. Not just because it’s a start but because (And I may be entirely alone in thinking this) it’s actually quite liberating.

Now that last statement can be taken in all sorts of philosophical directions but I wanna focus here on doing it as a creative person.

For the past 4 months I’ve been lucky enough to be Runner for various film and television productions. I’ve met some incredible artists, some hollywood people and some downright, wacky but talented nut cases.

Image

Yeah, its great knowing that you’re learning the politics of being on a set, working with people at the top of their game, giving your all and getting noticed. But if you never EVER got a call back? Could you be proud with the effort you put in?
The little guy is important. I would argue that to hell & back. And when the little guy gives 110%, as is the case with a lot of little guys, I like to think these little thoughts.

  • Where would ANYONE be without the tea & coffee you gave them? Where? Probably dead, that’s where.
  • If I can do a 16 hour working day for a week, I can do anything.
  • Who needs a gym membership? Really?

“But what about the Pride part?” I hear you cry. Look, the points I’ve made above may have been written with a hint of sarcasm but there’s a element of truth in them somewhere.

In proudly putting yourself last, stepping back from the drama, hustle and bustle of a creative environment and going the extra mile when work is expected of you will most certainly make your absence felt.

You’ll learn a hell of a lot about the people in an artistic environment and about what to do when you’re in their position.

“I don’t know what we would’ve done without you” is the single, most greatest compliment you will EVER hear, especially when you’re the little man. Appreciate that.

Adeeb

Finding My Muse

January 30, 2013 by

Image

I’m lucky. Ridiculously lucky. As in, sometimes it feels like I am undeservedly lucky. But I’m a big believer in creating your own luck so I’mma be cool. I have friends that I can proudly call Muses.

And they’re not easy to find. Just a couple of days ago I promoted one of my best friends to a Muse because he sent me a message that opened with this statement.

“yo dude, well done on … but I need to be honest with you because I know you’ve done the same for me back through these years….I don’t think it looks good enough…”

The entire message was about a page long and although reading parts of it felt like stabbing a freshly sharpened lead pencil straight at my optic nerve, there was also a sense of relief in his honesty.

Human nature causes us to avoid painful situations. This can stop some of the worlds most talented artists or writers ever showing another person their talents simply because they are afraid that their work might get ripped to shreds in the most ferociously articulated sentences. I know I feel this way.

Once we become wise enough to realise that our dreams of exhibiting the art we produce will never be of any worth unless we show it to people, we can find solace amongst those dearest to us and to whom we are dearest.

Our friends. They’re awesome. “That’s really good,” They say “I didn’t know you could do that. Show me more.” So you do and you hear the same thing over and over again. It’s beautiful.

This is what I did. After spilling guts, blood and cash into a piece of work I finally became content with. I was looking forward to an ear full of mild flattery and praise from a very. Good. Friend. Instead I got…

“The plot looks a bit muddled and I struggled to work out some of it… It felt a bit fake… also quality wise, it looks a bit iffy.”

The MotherFu…

He was almost right about everything. Almost. I argued a couple of points where I believed he might have been wrong and tried the best I could to express my opinions, fighting back the often severe temptation to call him Stupid.

It was in that moment that I realised, more than ever, the importance of someone who can verbally demolish your ego. Someone who can help you realise how much work you need to put in before you might even be considered good at what you do on a level that YOU want to called good at.

We’re all self critical, we have to be (If you’re not, re-evaluate your life) but we also desperately need the people around us to be just as critical. It’s the only way you’ll ever become as good as YOU want to be. Your muses will understand this and your muses will support like you no friend could. Find him or her and hold onto them for dear life.

Adeeb