Most of our CD’s are currently on the docks somewhere in the US, or if we’re lucky on the high seas somewhere, but we brought a few with us, and there were a few we had put in storage last June (and got back already). Many of these are independent records from friends in Florida. I’ve been listening to those particular CD’s this morning, and thinking to myself, There are so many great artists out there! I wonder what became of some of the friends I lost touch with, whose records I still enjoy. I wonder how their creative unfolding continues now. I wonder if they still record, write, have friends who do the same.
I realized so little of my artistic diet is what the machinery feeds us. I seek desperately or stumble serendipitously upon most of the art I consume. I am turned off immediately if work is marketed too heavily or too popular within the general population. It isn’t a snobbish, clique thing with me; I am simply drawn to the most simple artists. I still listen to U2 and read Chuck Palahniuk, but compared to most, I consume a lot of independent art.
And the other thing is that I love those artists. My heart leaps out at the people struggling, balancing what the ignorant would call “real life” with their creative unfolding, with their artistic calling. I want to help all of us, especially those of us in that position, to actualize our creative selves. And in that light I see technology and the Web as a tremendous new opportunity, leverage which which to accomplish that.
That is part of my calling. That is why Integration Research. That is why SWIM.
As for those busy with their “real” lives, I want to help them see the light, as it were. I am an evangelist for the arts. And the TV is the devil.
Anyway, the other thing that spurred this post is that I am supposed to write a letter to the ambassador about the fact that I will be operating a home business from out of our (supplied) housing (this was not allowed up until only a few years ago) (although apparently most people don’t bother with the letter). So here is my letter. Since I wrote it, I think I can do with it what else I want besides send it to him. So I’m going to post it as a goalish kinda landmark:<blockquote>I am writing to inform you of my intention to operate a modest business from our home. My enterprises are varied and numerous:
I have two clients I serve in a web development and design capacity, however I have no plans to take on more clients in this area.
I am currently forming a non-profit organization, Integration Research, an art and technology incubator. I intend to contract local software developers to help with Integration Research’s first project, a desktop application to help creatives organize and publish their work. Integration Research is also planning to facilitate a number of collective web-based art installations.
Occasionally, I am contracted to do some writing, and I plan to finish and “shop” my first novel before the end of our tour here in Sarajevo.
I also do photography, both for private collections and public installations. I will continue to publish and sell my work through my website.
Finally, I am a musician and songwriter, and I plan on recording and publishing two collections of recordings while in Sarajevo. One will be a self-published collection of my personal work, which I will sell at performances and on my website, as well as shop to record labels both in Europe and the States. The other will be songs I intend to shop to publishers.
These are all the projects I plan to execute, partially from the “home office.” If you require it, I will keep you abreast of any additional endeavors I take on.</blockquote>