A scrapbook of awesomeness: Toby spreads the *spark around the world, from

Our friend Sean Healy, aka Jean Poole, has a great interview with visualist *spark (Toby Harris of London). We love *spark for many reasons — for founding AVit, for being a wildly-talented artist, for reintroducing the idea of narrative to visualism, for VJing live on a giant touchscreen (see below), and other goodness, not necessarily in that order. Toby talks to Sean about everything from his philosophy of performance to some of the technical possibilities of audiovisual performance today.

I particularly like what *spark has to say about live cinema, and why the tools are “hotting up”:

That term ‘Live Cinema’ is something close to my heart though: I reckon you can specifically and deliberately combine a lot of whats good in established cinema and clubbing to give a completely new way of expressing yourself as a VJ-esque performer while engaging with audiences’s own creative thoughts. The key to it is an improvisational use of narrative, rather than forcing a fixed story down their throats, you could be a cinematic incarnation of the oral storytellers of old, weaving tales on the fly, or providing the scenarios and juxtapositions that people find themselves compulsively mapping their own narratives onto. Stepping back from that, I’m interested in anything that uses media to make people interact or think in unexpected ways, which has taken me from playing with the conventions of one-man theatre to storytelling installations. And the tools are really hotting up at the moment, things are getting interesting.

*sparkin’ it up []

Speaking of hotting it up, check out that potent combination of Ableton Live (for music) and VDMX (for visuals) on a MacBook Pro. It’s a coupling we’re seeing more of these days. (And it doesn’t necessarily have to be Live and VDMX per se, or even one laptop — but people exploring real audiovisual soundtrack means Live Cinema can be sonic as well as visual.) Those of you working on similar setups, we’d love to see them. Whether it goes on Create Digital Music or Create Digital Motion — well, I can flip a coin.