Sunday, 27 September 2015

Vincent Walden's not-so-professional reviews: Sleaford Mods

It's that time again children, review time, with the worlds most under-trained internet reviewer.

Thursday evening I trotted on down to The Brickyard at around 7pm to go see those angry English men otherwise known as the Sleaford Mods. But as gigs always go, it was not just those guys I saw; we also had Mark Wynn and Steve Ignorant (+ band) to entertain us.

So, in the interest of chronological order and making this review remotely readable—I'll start with Mark Wynn.

Explaining Mark Wynn is like trying to teach the rules of gravity to a dog armed only with a box of packaging foam and a Spanish-to-English phrase book; everything you say will make no feckin' sense.

At 7:30 prompt this scrawny man entered the stage with a small punnet of grapes, a mix-board and a domestic egg timer. He walked straight up to the microphone, spoke some very unrecognisable words then hit play on his mixer to start this funky tune of which he began bopping and reading poetry to.
If it wasn't already weird enough, his set just became more and more strange with the introduction of a range of marker pens, a tiara and incessant rambling of grapes and pineapple juice.

His poetry was a mixture of talking about his Grandma with the flu, mixed feeling of his sexuality at a young age and embodying a shouty woman who insisted on knowing "You pissed mate?" in an ear bleeding manor. And if his poetry and props weren't strange enough – his stage presence was like watching someone who is possessed by a devil in a mid LSD trip, shirtless, confused, scoffing a range of fruits.

After the whirlwind that was Mark Wynn we then necked back our drinks, and waited patiently for Steven Ignorant to grace the stage. After a few minutes, he walked right on, cued his band and started a merciless rant at modern British men and the state of our country; and it was fantastic.
His set was brilliant, his poetry was better and the best part was that his name has almost zero reflection on the person he really is.

Ignorant is the word furthest away from what I would describe the former member of Crass.
He was full of heart and heartbroken, he was angry and he was caring; the whole set was like being told the hardships of life by a werther's original in an leather jacket and a pork pie hat.
He was more brilliant than he was strange so I won't elaborate as I did, just employ a digital round-of-applause for this good man.

Photo courtesy of Chelsea Cannar

After both really enjoyable sets, the majority of the male audience went for that 'just before the main act piss and pint' then we and all pushed to the front, waiting patiently to be shouted at by an angry man with a microphone. And we were not disappointed.

The set was once again, brilliant, they covered tracks from the new album, all the hits and made sure they could slur the worlds "CURRLIYLE" after every couple of songs. The lead singer (or poet) refused to face the crowd and threw his headmaster like frown towards the speakers, and it's quite good that he did. I don't think it affected the performance at all, and I assume full eye contact with said man would likely have the effect it would if you met Medusa in greek mythology.

It was relentless. There was never more than 5 seconds between songs, and never more than a minute between each curse word. I liked Sleaford Mods before this, and now I would put them right up in the top ten, because my goodness, my goodness.

Photo courtesy of Chelsea Cannar

I can't say much else other than I really enjoyed it, because I've reached my quota of "brilliant"'s, used every single analogy I could think of. A great, yet confusing gig all round.

Thank you for coming to 'Currliyle' you angry, angry angry men!

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Stick your money where your XY chromosome is!

The gender divide in the design industry and why the money isn’t the main issue.

If you work in the creative industry or have ever heard of it, you’d know that we are mostly all ‘bloody lefties’ and would likely all vote for equal rights on any given chance; yet there is still a large gender divide in the industry, and it seems very bizarre to me. So, although I want to ask why, this is not what I’m going to do.

I’m not asking why, because as far as I can tell that’s done very little to change the problem, so I’m going to get mildly angry on an internet blog and tell you all what I think about it (obviously).
The problem that is the gender divide is most obvious in the industry when you look at pay, and although it’s the big pointing arrow to the divide—I don’t think it’s the main issue.
I am a male by definition, and that fact entitles me to more than it really should. Because I have a deformed chromosome and a penis between my legs; I am due to earn roughly 18% more than a female counterpart in the creative industry. And Christ, that is a large amount and would be the difference between paying rent and living comfortably in anyone’s pockets – so with the only real difference between us being the accolade of being able to piss standing up, it does not seem totally fair to me.

Now, although the pay gap is rather large and I certainly wouldn’t want to be paid less than anyone else – through my eyes it’s not the real problem here, it’s more the large blinking light; furiously flashing at the face of modern day sexism.
It’s not like the money wouldn’t help and I’m sitting on my high horse saying it’s not the problem when it’ll never effect me; but please hear me out. The problem lies in the sexism that surrounds this issue, rather than the pennies that are missing.

The difference in pay is because bosses and directors alike know they can they can do so, and why do they know they can, because they still have the belief that women are not equal to men.
If they were equal, they’d be paid the same, but in all those directors eyes all a creative woman is—is 18% percent less of a man, than a man.
The money isn’t an issue when you’ve got the fact that people are being seen less that other due to their gender. It’s not even like women haven’t achieved great things in design and their pay gap is represented in the ignorance of some peoples set in perceptions. Some of the biggest designers in the world are female, and punch way above the directors that are setting the unfair figures on the pay cheques. There are many influential females in the design world and I’d like to point out some to prove my point.

Firstly, in our current design sphere, we have Jessica Walsh of Sagmeister & Walsh. Not only is she a partner in one of America’s infamous agencies, but she is also one of the most famous designers on social media with her bright palettes and lovely hand text. We also have Paula Scher, another hugely influential designer, who carves her path in the industry with the world-renowned agency Pentagram; of whom only employ the elite of the elite. So both these ladies are clearly not any less of designers than any man on this planet.

 Even though I’ve only named two designers, I think their stance alone should emphasise my point. These two women will likely achieve more than I ever will, and their influence will likely go on to inspire generations of designers that aren’t even born yet—but if I were in a similar position I’d still be worth 18% more than either of them. That is fucking bullshit.

The fact that women are paid less is not the issue, the issue is that they are paid less because they are seen as less. At the end of the day, gender is nothing more than a social construct, so it gives even less of reason to these differences in pay. Sort yourselves out design industry, I thought you were better than this.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

What do you get when you cross bear arms with a colt 45?

You get cross-country punk (of course)

It's a well known fact that I make pretty things for Colt 45; from music videos, to logos, to posters but what hasn't been well known until this morning is that they are touring in December. Touring around Scotland and England, with a soul of punk, northern-ness and the poster I've just made for them.

I got an email saying, we're doing a tour, we need a poster in a week and we're touring with Bear Arms, so what else could I say? Well, I just said yes and sketched everything that flashed into my head from the moment of being informed of the tour.

I thought, what have we got here? Two bands that share named with items that exist. Items that when singled out look quite strange. A lone handgun and the upper body of a forest wandering beast; that'd look brilliant on a poster.

So here we are, a few days later with a bright orange crest for their tour – filled with the finished imagery and fonts. I created the poster mostly from one of the ideas that struck me right at the moment of reading the email, but the white outlines behind the image came when I mistakenly made the background that bright orange that it is.

It seems rather instinctive of me to do so, and I think it's come from my cliché love of Penguin Book sleeves, but I didn't even question it at the time; it just looked right.
I'm rather chuffed with this, as it's pretty minimal and not too similar to most the posters that I've made recently or making at the moment, and that little change adds a whole lot of fresh air to my idea buzzing head—which is always a good thing.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

thebrickyardonline, is now running a newer; sexier model.

If you know me, and have had any contact with me recently—you'll likely know that for the past month I've been trying something completely outside of my comfort zone, and if you don't know me, but just read this, you'll now also know.

It's nothing exciting like BDSM or learning spanish, No I have conquered the mean feat of creating a full responsive wordpress website! Yes, quiver in fear my child!

It's quite a big step, creating a big commercial website; for the boy that has barely learnt how to build his own simple HTML site. I encountered the lovely mess that is .php, had a load of helpers along the way and I'm still fixing bugs here and there.

I have never really done anything as stressful and as fun as trying to make a wordpress website, and changing all those little snippets of code just to make some text that slight bit more colourful.
I would like to take my hat off to James Sessford and Robbie Scott for their helping hands & patience; and I'm sure I'll likely call on you soon to help me fix something or other.

I can't take all the credit for creation, as it's based on a theme, and has many a plugins but it's like a company that build cars. Technically they built the car, even if the engine and gear box were bought in and tampered with to work for their need.

I've got to say though, I am pretty proud with the fact that I have managed to do what I have, without any prior knowledge of .php or Wordpress websites. I have helped make the website automated and far more simple for them to make gig listings, archives and modifications.

At the end of the day, I'm pretty proud and I think you should check it out.

Corbyn approves, or disapproves; I can't tell.

Monday, 14 September 2015

You can't trust a Dave

First we had David Cameron and now Dave McCabe – you can't trust a Dave.

Well, maybe you can trust a Dave, I know a few nice ones – but I'm a little scorned. You see, I made this poster, and it was pretty darn fun to make, I really like it and well it'll never see the light of day.
Dave McCabe has cancelled his tour, thus rendering this poster useless and that makes me sad.

I was actually rather looking forward to seeing him, because he sounded pretty cool but there just mustn't of been the demand, and now he's not coming up north (as they say).

I made the (almost) the whole poster with just the pen tool, it's really a long ass way of doing things but it's really rather fun also. But this is going straight into the vault as it's not really needed, so feast your eyes young one; I won't be needing it.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Motown is 2 spook 4 u

Blood splatted, decapitated and pink; everything you want from a poster.

Only hours ago I finished off adding the blood splatters, and moved James Brown's head into place, to complete the Motown and Soul poster for this years Halloween Special. It has the works, the mark of the anti-christ, open wounds, cut skin and blood squirting—what more can want?

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Getting truly sick of impatient fairground rides

You know what really grinds my gears? When that Ferris Wheel just won't be decent and patient. Bloody fairground equipment eh.

I've been working me butt off, getting the second cover by the lads of Colt 45 ready. The deadline was it had to be ready before they left for Germany – of which they are touring round right now – and I managed to do it! Well, just. Two days early, just for peace of mind.

There is little I can say about it that you can't see, but they said they wanted it to display the ruddy good summer they've had, and wanted the edit to follow the upbeat, bright and vintage tone that the original song holds. So with colour filters, films burns and a hell of a lot a childlike smiles, I think I managed to do it.

You may also notice some clips are at a slightly higher bitrate than the others, that's because I shot them myself when I was their AAA super photographer, come roadie, come reviewer. Enjoy!
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