A little interview I did in the lead up to PIQUE, a new quarterly artist series presented by Debaser. The first installment is happening on June 12, 2021.
You can read the full interview here
“How has the pandemic affected your artistic process?
I have so many things I want to say! On the admin side of things it has actually helped me be easier on myself in a lot of ways. I often felt stress and pressure before to keep up with the cycle of applications, deadlines, festivals, touring. And there was often this accompanying weight and regret if I missed anything and almost this anxiety of falling behind. I think a lot of that stems from how business oriented the industry (and also grant and program applications) can be, of needing to show how your career is advancing, progressing, and growing with numbers and accomplishments. I think I tried not to get too caught up in that, but when everyone else is also running on that hamster wheel it’s hard to not feel like you’re somehow straggling if you aren’t following that cycle as well. But now we’ve all shared in this collective pause and it feels like we’re able to choose our own pace more. So it’s been a good time to reorient my motivations, basically doing things less out of obligation and more out of desire.
I think staying at home has shifted our concept of time too and the urgency of (oftentimes, arbitrary) deadlines has softened as a result (like if something doesn’t happen by a certain date that is okay, or if you miss a date there is still a next time and that is okay too). It feels like people have become more flexible and understanding which has also helped with the immediacy that was creating a lot of that stress and pressure. It’s almost like a lot more people have gained empathetic insight that it’s hard to prioritize answering e-mails when your mental health isn’t doing well or something.
On the creative and artistic side, because of all this extra time I have at home I’ve allowed myself to try a lot of new things and really stretch myself. It was like, “Well, I have time, why not build a sculpture or write a short story?” Again, I think I felt some pressure before to focus only on writing music, so that I could record, release, perform, tour, rinse, repeat. I also find it pretty hard to create anything while touring, even though you technically have lots of idle time on the road or in airports. It’s hard to get in the right headspace to organize my thoughts and experiment in the same way as I do at home. I’m truly a homebody so this has been really nice, and I’ve discovered new things about myself!”