Last year I took my first crack at sharing my drawings with the world, slapping them on t-shirts and selling them via LaikaRevolution.com, as well as going out to a lot of festivals and markets to tout my tawdry wares. It went pretty well, I think. Certainly enough people seemed to like what I was doing for me to do more (and more) of it. Which was nice.
More recently I’ve been adding more prints to LaikaRev too, as well as original pieces which I’m hoping to move into selling more of. As the summer looms I’ll be back out trying to push them out into the world too.
Along the way I’ve run into a few moments of uncertainty one of which I’m, only now, trying to deal with.
I started Laika Revolution because I wanted to keep the (more commercial) t-shirts separate from the (less commercial) writing and art. A bit delusional, to be honest, given that even where I do sell stuff nothing I do is ever particularly commercial. Sure, I make a point of not doing anything with an end product in mind and certainly not audience appeal. But like a lot of people I keep an elevated notion of the arts and literature in my mind. I half hold myself back from just doing stuff because I think that some of the stuff I do should be at least aspiring to the high faluting worlds of the creative arts, rather than just being personal creations that I enjoy sharing with the world. Bullshit, really. Everything I create is part of me, the only barriers between a fairly heavy book of prose and poetry and a t-shirt is that a very well embedded and heavily imposed set of social norms make me feel like one is ‘proper’ while the other isn’t. Following that I basically end up degrading myself because I’m so used to looking up at gatekeepers whose standards are, in reality, more or less completely alien to my own.
The conclusion I’ve come to, after a year of trying to push my work out into the world is that I need to get over that. And the fairly minor thing I’m going to do to achieve that is bringing everything back under my own name. Over the next few months I’ll be adding a lot to this site. All the LaikaRev products will be available here and so will original art. Two finished books which I’ve been sitting on for a while now (Laikanist Times 2 and an untitled novel) will both be released in some form and if you’re lucky enough to catch me out in the real world it’ll be my own name on the flyers and nothing else.
An aspect of that is that I’ll be fixing, again, on the DIY ethic that I’ve always leaned towards. Less relevant with the visual stuff, where that’s basically the default way of doing things, more relevant with the writing – where it isn’t necessarily. For a while now I’ve sat on a couple of projects thinking about trying to sell them, or at least modifying them to the point where trying to sell them might be something more than forlorn hope. I’m done with that too to be honest. I like my culture Indy.
Anyway, this is basically just a declaration of intent. Lots of new stuff will be coming here soon and I hope you’ll have a look when it does.