During the process of developing and creating this live performance project, I have learned a lot about what exactly is involved in developing, planning, preparing and putting together a live music performance. There have been ideas that worked well, and some that failed and I have found certain promotion techniques successful and others less so.
Visual Djing Projection
I am really happy with the visuals I managed to create for this performance. I believe they really added an extra dimension to the performance and aided in establishing a distinct brand and aesthetic for myself. The Resolume software was also a great addition to the project as it allowed me to manpiulate the visuals live and in real time which made them a lot more interesting to watch.
I am also really pleased with how I utilised my handmade midi controller to manipulate the video, and how easily compatible it was with the software. I believe having something I made myself that nobody else has adds a certain unique quality to my performance.
I feel my stage presence really improved during the preparation for this project, mainly due to the amount of trial performances I did during which I was able to try out new ideas and decide which tracks I would play and in what order. It also allowed me to become more comfortable on stage, especially the performance I did in London at the beginning of April. I received a lot of great feedback for it which definitely boosted my confidence a lot.
I also feel that doing so many performances in preparation for the main one gave me the opportunity to get acustomed to setting everything up as quick as possible. This benefitted me greatly, as by the time the final performance came around I was able to set up really quickly and efficiently.
Strengths and Weaknesses
This project I felt overall went really well, it helped me gain some valuable skills I can apply and take forward to future projects. It has given me a valuable insight as to what is required to carry out a successful live perfomance utilising visuals and projection. By creating the entire project from scratch, including the ideas, compositions, marketing, and design, it showed me just how much time and work needs to be set aside for creating something of this scale. Every phase of the creation required lots of planning, experimentation, prototyping and attention to detail, and it was very difficult at times being responsible for so much at once.
My strengths throughout the project I feel were my designs for the projections. I think I was successful in creating a strong visual brand, with a well designed logo that was also unique. I’m pleased that each track had its own video that was well timed and in sync and I feel each one was atmospheric and I think it visually reflects the music very well and I was able to create the strong aesthetic that I first set out to achieve which also appeals to my target audience and brought the performance to life and added depth and character to my sound.
There were a few technical difficulties during the perfomance which seemed to be caused by the Resolume software glitching. After the performance I tried figuring out what caused it but I couldn’t find anything out of the ordinary with the project file or my midi mapping, and I had managed to rehearse the complete set with no issues many times prior so it is a shame that something malfunctioned. I will be sure to learn a lesson from this for future reference.
My biggest weakness besides the technical difficulty I think was time management. I feel I spent a lot trying to settle upon an idea and used a lot of time researching and developing concepts that I didn’t end up following. This was detrimental later on in the process and I feel that time could have been better spent.
If I were to continue working on this project or to do it again I would have managed my time better and probably created more detailed videos. Whilst I’m really happy with how they turned out I feel I could have added a bit more to them, and in the future I also aim to get more familiar with Resolume in order to utilise more of it’s many features and effects in order to create more interesting and diverse visual manipulations.
I would also develop the effects on my vocal pedal too, as there is a custom effect option I have never used that allows you to create your own custom setting for vocals. I feel this would improve the performance as it would allow me complete control over my vocal distortion.
Finally, in the future I would like to bring another musician on board for future performances. I feel this would take some of the pressure off me, and having someone at the laptop would make dealing with any technical issues much easier.