This week saw the release of what, by all accounts, will be the final Pink Floyd album “The Endless River”. As an AVID fan (those who know me know that is an understatement) I’ve been flooded with emotions and reflective this week about not only the album and my Floyd geekdom…but about how I got to this place in this moment in time, where I am now…the owner of a company, with my wife, whose tagline is “…the art in every moment.”
“Let’s go back, Let’s go back, Let’s go way on back when…” -A. Franklin
Growing up, I was always fascinated by colored lights…christmas lights, buttons on appliances, light bright, space ship control panels, etc. My father even built me a space ship cockpit with little light up buttons he got at an army surplus store…loved that damn thing!!! Anyway, anything that lit up and had color, I was digging!! (i’m a child of the 70’s and 80’s…dig?).
There was also a fascination with music. I had a little olive green record player that you could stack about 8 records on and I would load that thing up with the big records of the day…Sesame Street Christmas, anything Disney, the Star Wars Story album…ya know, the hits. I would play those records day and night…going to sleep with a stack of wax loaded up. Ended up burning that poor record player out. But, by then I had a tape player. Anyway, I digress.
It was a simple time…read along stories playing on a record player while making cool designs on my light bright. Who knew that times like those would be such a major player in my life so many years later?
“Tongue tied and twisted, just an earthbound misfit, I…” – D. Gilmour
My father was an amateur photographer…a DAMN good one, at that. He had a darkroom, could develop his own film, make his own prints, and even do color correction with the photoshop of the day…big pack of color pencils. I loved playing around with all his camera gear…he had a ton of it!!! Nikon, Canon, Mamyia…speedlites, backdrops, light meters, etc, etc, etc. But, as interested as I was…all that gear “is not a toy!!!”. He did eventually buy me an older nikon with a coupla decent lenses and a flash. I took that camera to summer art camp that year and had a blast with it until the photography instructor got in trouble for saying a cuss word infront of us kids and, I guess, was dismissed a few days before it was over. (little did they know we were already using those words thanks to smokey and the bandit.)
My love of photography started back then…but ended up on the shelf as the years went by. It was first put up by the disease of Ulcerative Colitis, which I was diagnosed with around 1985. I just felt too bad to move, much less pick up a camera. So, shelf it went.
As I got older, my taste in music changed…moving from Sesame Street and Disney, to the Footloose soundtrack, PacMan Fever, and Huey Lewis (some may argue that my change in taste was a lateral move).
In the later part of 1987, a friend of mine forced me to listen to this strange CD. Made me sit there and listen. As the music started, I kept asking…”well, where’s the singing????” I was holding the jewel box, looking at the cover…there was one guy shaking hands with another guy…and one of them was on fire. “Dude, this is stupid…what the hell is this?” 44 minutes and 28 seconds later, my life had made a considerable hard right turn. After the next 44 minutes and 28 seconds…the small embers, that were barely burning from those early childhood fascinations, began to burn brighter. What was needed was more fuel for the fire.
“a momentary lapse of reason, that binds a life to a life…” – D. Gilmour / P.Manzanera
The albums, the cover-art…stirred my imagination. The video for their “comeback” single “Learning to Fly” featured their live stage set up for their 1987 world tour. As the kids say…OMG. Visuals, Music, Lights. And it still has the same fascination to me today. Staring at the album covers, listening to the each album beginning to end (the only way one SHOULD listen to ANY album), watching the “Delicate Sound of Thunder” concert video, seeing them live twice during their 1994 Division Bell tour. All those little embers of light brights, christmas lights, and olive green record players…the fires now rage.
As I listened to “The Endless River” this week…as I am at the time of this writing…I am brought back to not only the first time of hearing and seeing those beautiful images in my head…but i’m brought back to that record player, to that light bright, to that homemade spaceship cockpit, to that olive green record player. Brought back to the innocence and I feel young.
A couple of weeks ago, I was out doing some shooting around our property in south Lake Charles, Louisiana…it’s a beautiful piece of land with some great trees and bushes. Great for sunsets, nature and portrait shoots…and we don’t have to waste gas! Anyway…as I was shooting, I caught myself playing songs in my head, pacing myself and shooting to the music in my head. Playlist that hour was The Band, Rush, and one of the great bluesmen of all time, Son House. All art is symbiotic. And as human beings, art is as necessary for us as air and water. Art is what keeps us humans from being lawn chairs.
All those moments. Images, Music, Lights, Colors, Emotion, Thought…colliding into a single moment. That’s what was going through my mind when I came up with the tag line for PerrinStudios…”the art in every moment.” Everyone has those moments when it all comes together…whatever “it” is for each of us. That’s what we want to free from the ever moving hands of time. Those moments. That is what we do.