The internet allows artists to gain exposure that might otherwise be denied to them, says Kevin Buckle
As the general election proved what happens and is said on social media does not necessarily represent the wider population – but that isn’t to say that there isn’t much to recommend it.
I’ve always particularly liked the images I come across and of course have had huge success in the shop with the Brazilian artist and graphic designer Butcher Billy, who first came to my attention with his mashed-up images of musicians and superheroes several years ago and has since gone on to great success working with the likes of Netflix, the New York Times and indeed Marvel.
Of course when I was asked to open in the Waverley Mall I used the name of another artist I had come to know closer to home at the Tron Arts Market so that the new shop was called Avalanche Gapinski rather than the more traditional Avalanche Records.
Gerry Gapinski is probably also best known for mash-ups, only in his case he superphotoshops photographs of several Edinburgh buildings into one image in a very effective way that again via Twitter caught the eye of Martin Metcalfe of The Filthy Tongues, who has used Gerry’s work on their last two albums.
Gerry, of course, has other strings to his bow, having created a successful series of punk/zombie images and jewellery made from broken watches that is proving very popular in the shop with those looking for a unique gift.
The latest person to have work at Avalanche is the photographer Scott Liddell, who goes under the name Dark Edinburgh. Scott’s images are already hugely popular, particularly on Facebook as he matches his evocative original photographs with song lyrics or quotes from books, films and philosophers.
The first three cards in stock all have a Christmas feel using lyrics from Nick Cave and Joy Division and a quote from the CS Lewis book The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – “Always winter but never Christmas” – with a nighttime shot of the Christmas market. Alternative Christmas cards might be the best description.
When we trailed the arrival of Dark Edinburgh with a large poster in the window using the Joy Division lyric “Don’t walk away in silence” such was the demand we had to make it available in the full A0 poster size and in a half-size version. It is also now available as an A3 heavyweight art print as is the CS Lewis image and a rare colour pic of Edinburgh at night for which the byline Dark Edinburgh is all that is needed
More collaborations are planned in the future with photos from the award-winning husband and wife team of Paul and Lynn Henni, who have already had their work available at The City Art Centre, due in the new year. Finally while there are many great Twitter accounts for finding images old and new I would certainly recommend @YourWullie who provides on a daily basis some great photos as well as often salient comments. There is a focus on Scotland but images can be from all over the world.
You can also find Dark Edinburgh on twitter at @darkedinburgh Lynn and Paul are at @HenniPhoto and also have a new website well worth a look at www.henni.photo
At times like this it is nice to be able to show a positive side to social media.