Posted Monday, Apr 29th 2013 @ 15:06

Question: How do you know when a piece is finished?

Answer: When I'm dead. Then I won't be able to re-open the file and make changes.

Release early and often. It's the mantra of the open source community and a tenet we follow here at W&S. All of the files we upload to suit your entertainment needs are in their latest and greatest forms. But we'll happily release something before it's ready. Then we chat about the work, and, if the need arises, we fix it and override the file. The link stays the same, though; a fact which I find to be rad sauce. This ability enables us to release art with open source ethics, ensuring that the files in the file table are in their final forms.

But it has also been a source of great darkness. The ability to indefinitely change my artwork has become an inadvertent justification to obsess over it: leading to sleepless nights, expensive failed print runs, and file names like "Understory Final 41." What does that even mean? It's not final if it's 41! This isn't really new behavior for me: the final version of Bones (The Rhythm) from the Wishing Well album was bounce #85. But what is new is the pressure to release quality work in short intervals of time. It's entirely self-generated anguish; which makes it my favorite kind.

For this piece, the obsession centered around entrances and exits. For the cubist, trapping color in the confines of geometry is a stronghold of the work. When combined with the stylistic choice of allowing lines to trail off into eternity, determining the nature of the gates, the entrances and exits to reality, can be tricky.

Question: So you spent more than ten hours working on a line?

Answer: Yes.

A quick way to determine how many times I've changed a file is by the layer count. I like to make changes on new layers, so that they're not permanent. Heaven forbid I make a line I don't like, without the ability to obsessively compare it to the old line. Both the Understory and this piece, the Canopy, finished at layer 40.

Layer 40, my old friend. Show them how we've suffered.

xoxo (CW) Alex