Tag Archives: public art

I Give My Art Away For Free

I give everything I do away for free. No one is required to give me anything in return for my art, be it by performing in public or by making vlogs or blogs. People can steal our energy, our image and our music as they please. There are no consequences, nor do they feel guilty for doing so. Why should they? I am in a public space. No one owes me a cent. Our art is free for anyone to listen to, a homeless person to a CEO. No one is responsible for giving us anything in return for the work we do to make our art what it is. It’s taken me 28 years to get where I am, 7 years of which I’ve been doing prayformance. Even as I become a better performer, people watching me in the street will still react the same. Amazed, moved, but confused, scared and unable to act. That is the world’s reaction to our music. If we did the same performances we give outdoors inside, people would be cheering and screaming their heads off, but in public they usually just stand there, put their hands together for a few seconds, and then continue to stand there gawking at us, or walk away. It maddens me, but there is absolutely nothing I can do to change it. If I could perform indoors as much as I can outdoors, I would. Our work would still be free, but people would be more responsive and more generous.

I don’t think people understand what the word underrated means. I work for four to five hours every day making a vlog for our channel. I spend hours on top of that making vlogs for my own channel, writing blog entries, doing makeup and prayforming. I give all my energy to doing these things and I get little back for that work. I rarely get compliments about my makeup, which I can sometimes work up to three hours on. Sometimes, like tonight, hardly anyone says a word about our music while we’re prayforming. People rarely comment on our or my vlogs or on this blog, which wouldn’t take even the smallest percentage of energy compared to the work I’m doing to put it out there.

I’m doing everything I possibly can. When I prayform I give %150 to the work. It takes all my concentration to sing and dance and play violin while people are walking by or talking. I’m entertaining hundreds of people for free every night. I go home and I share our life online for hundreds of people to watch and read for free. That’s what life is as a public performer. I have to give so much more than I get back. That is what being underrated means. We are two people alone doing our best to make our art and make a living. The least you can do is show your support. Leave a comment, come see us prayform when we’re in your town, share our music with your friends, throw us a dollar. It’s the damn near least you could do. It doesn’t require any energy. Just think of how much energy we are using to do this. Don’t just stand there. Don’t be a zombie. Participate! Our art can only survive by people’s participation. When we’re gone, people will wish they had. Don’t be afraid to stand up and support our work. We appreciate it and need it more than you will ever know.

Living with a Millionaire

Sunday May 25th 2014

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERASis woke me up at 10:30. I was super tired, but happy to see her. Thoth came in and got scared. “I didn’t know who it was. I thought someone had gotten into the house.” he said. I slowly got myself up, brushed my teeth and did a nasal cleanse. Sis was tired so she got back in bed. We went to Sacred Grounds Cafe for breakfast sandwiches. I loved mine, but sis didn’t. We went back home and I leisurely got ready to perform. Sis stayed in bed and we biked to  Golden Gate Park.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAThe gates of the tunnel were closed. We got set up and started playing. We did a new waltz and Thoth started the ostinato. “I felt left out.” I said. When Thoth plays the ostinato, I’m not so comfortable playing violin so I don’t know what to do. “I just need to keep working on it.” I said. I’m trying to listen more. Sis started screaming and cheering when we finished “Pentagram.” Everyone watching us were sitting in the shade. It was very sunny. We did two more improvs throughout the prayformance. I’m teaching myself to improvise better! Sis always inspires me to be funnier because she always laughs. “Have you been doing new pieces all day?”she asked. I got very free and improvisatory in our old pieces. “You always become bolder when you improvise.” Thoth said.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAWhen we finished, a few people came up and told us they follow us on Facebook. I had posted we’d be prayforming this weekend, and people actually came. “See you have fans.” sis said. We took some pictures and started packing up. A friendly man named steven gave us some ginger beer and talked with us. He and his wife had had a picnic and watched the entire prayformance. We biked home and decided what to do for dinner. We asked John if he’d like to go to Thanh Long with us. “Let’s see what Annie wants to do.” he said. He came back after a moment. “She’s busy, but I’d love to go with you.” he said. Thoth made a reservation for 8:30 and I took a shower. We drove in sissy’s car.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAWe drove through the park to the ocean. The sun was just about to set. We pulled over and I jumped out of the car and ran to the beach. After it set, Thoth, sis and John were calling to me. “We’ll be late!” they said. I ran back and John put his arm around me. “Sorry! I was just so excited!” I said. “It’s OK, you were so full of excitement!” John said. We missed a turn so we got to see more of the ocean. “I can’t believe I live here and I never come here!” sis said. “Well, we can take a walk on the beach and go to dinner sometime.” John said. “I can’t afford it.” sis said. “Well that’s ok, I’ll treat you.” he said. We got to Thanh Long and found a parking place. We were seated immediately. The restaurant seemed bigger to me. Thoth and I ordered crab. “Can I treat you?” John asked sis. “Sure.” she said. “I’m a cheap date.” “You don’t have to be when I treat.” he said. Thoth and I took a long time eating our crabs and our hands got covered in butter sauce. “I remember now.” I said. Thoth thanked John for his friendship and for letting us stay with him. “That’s the great thing about living with people. You get to know them better.” he said. After dinner, John revealed to us how much money he really has. I was shocked. I wonder what we’d do with that much money. He gave a lot of money to his partner Annie, too.

We went home and sis said goodbye and got John’s number. I sat down and listened to music and blogged and Thoth got in bed.

3rd of 7 Prayformances in Golden Gate Park

Saturday May 10th 2014

I woke up to an email from Rachael, who we’re renting a room from in Edinburgh, saying she got the wire transfer! I was so relieved! I did my makeup and got dressed and we biked to the park. “I’ll see you there a little later.” John said from upstairs. Golden Gate Park was full of people. There was a concert going on in Hippy Hill. The gates of the tunnel were closed. We were an hour early, so we took our time getting ready. I went to the bathroom. A guy held his hand up to give me a high five. “That’s how you do it, girl!” he said commenting on my outfit. A little boy ran up behind me and said, “Hello!””Do you want to shake my hand?” I asked. “Sure!” he said giving me the wrong hand. “He’s so forward! I love that!” I said to his mother as I leaned down to take a picture with him. I went back to the tunnel. A man came down and started playing flute at the other side of the tunnel as we set up. We sat in the sun and relaxed. We thought he had a case out, but it turned out he was filming himself. Why do people do that? He obviously knew were were about to perform. He saw us setting up, yet he just started playing without saying a word to us. People do that all over the world. Why can’t people show a little respect? Anyway, he left after about an hour.

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERABy the time it was 3, he had left and we started. My hands were sore from working on decorating the past few days. I also had trouble with the ground. Playing in front of the gate is hard because the ground is uneven. My hands and feet were sore by the time we finished. We didn’t have very big audiences either, which left me a little down. It was a hard prayformance, but a success. John came and lay on the grass while we packed up. Thoth was very talkative and I was very quiet and sleepy. We decided to go have sushi.

We all biked back to John’s house and Thoth and I dropped our stuff off before going to dinner near the Height. There were tons of children in the restaurant. A little girl couldn’t take her eyes off me. I still had my costume on. John told us to split the bill in half. We ordered more than him, so he paid for some of our sushi. He’s sweet like that. We bike home. “Rasberry bars at the corner store?” John asked. “Sure!” We biked to the corner store and got dessert, then biked back home. What a lovely day! Tasha, John’s cat, is letting me pick him up now. He’s very friendly and pet-able, but he’s never let me pick him up before. I got a picture of my wedding dress from Jenn and talked on Skype. The flowers weren’t the ones I wanted. I was disappointed. She’s going to send me the dress with the flowers and I’ll glue them on. I went to bed feeling a bit stressed. I want my wedding dress to look the way I imagined it!