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Category Archives: Seattle Peach 100
Frank Correa is a character. A true artist in every sense of the word, the Peruvian native creates images by capturing moments on 35mm film, and turning them into outer space dreamscapes in Photoshop. His work is surreal, it’s sexy, and it’s sublime, much like Frank himself. His photographs are an extension of himself, a peek into his vibrant, kaleidoscopic mind. To look upon them is like seeing color for the first time, like Dorothy stepping into Oz and leaving the black and white world of Kansas behind her.
Frank moved to Everett, WA as a teenager when his uncles moved his family to the area after establishing themselves with jobs at Boeing. “It was great,” he says, “It was a really drastic change from where I came from. I think I liked the experiences I had and the friends. The city itself sucks, but I had a good time there. There was a lot of green, a lot of trails I could get lost at, and friends with similar interests.” Making the hop over to Seattle after high school was a natural transition for him, following friends and joining a Capitol Hill community that he already belonged to. And this is where it all began. Frank had played around with photography a bit in high school, borrowing big, outdated cameras from the photojournalism department of his school, but it wasn’t until he moved to Capitol Hill that he began to take it seriously.
“I started hanging out with Lauren Max,” he explains, “and she did a good job documenting parties and all that life that I was a part of. I was always interested in taking photos so she gave me her camera when she was done with it. She gave me that Rebel and I took photos with it, A LOT, and then the camera started to fail because Lauren already ran it almost to death and then I killed it for sure. It wouldn’t take photos anymore; it wasn’t focusing and just not working out. I remember I was doing a photo shoot at that time and my camera died, but thank god I had a disposable camera handy, so I ended up shooting with that. And I like how it looked and so after that I just started doing point and shoots, and still do.”
What Frank does now is a souped-up, take no prisoners version of that original style. It’s the result of the expression of his completely unbridled imagination. “I said fuck it,” he says, “no more limitations. Just do whatever you want. So I just went at it.” He describes his “bliss” as coming home, turning on his big screen TV monitor that’s connected to his computer hard drive, and zoning out on photo editing, exploring the infinite possibilities of the world he creates.
Frank Correa is a mystic. His blood is of the Inca, and in it there is magic. His presence is powerful and yet gentle, genius and yet humble. This is the root of why Frank is in the Seattle Peach 100. Sure, he is one of the most mind-blowingly talented artists in Seattle and possibly the world. But what draws us to this man is his sense of compassion and humility and openness. He is approachable and friendly and silly and sweet. He is easy to befriend, and I am grateful to have a man like him in my life. To get a sense of his playful personality, check out his Factsheet below.
All photos: Shot by Brooklyn, ‘Shopped by Frank.Tweet
Analog artist, Nick Bartoletti, is a Seattle native who has found a passion in creating something out of nothing. He is creating with analog hardware in a modern age where computer software has seeped into every niche of audio/visual art. His story is an amazing one of originality and passion meeting success through the cross-pollination of music and video. While being a life-long nerd is a pre-requisite to having the self confidence required to pick up analog art, Nick was by no means a film buff or movie geek before he got his start in video art. “I got a VHS Camcorder from the thrift store a while ago,” Nick says, “I just liked the idea of making home movies again. One day I plugged into my projector and accidentally pointed the camera at the projector and discovered the whole world of feedback. Then I went from there, adding little cheap effects boxes, and then video mixers, and video synthesizer.” A Seattle video artist was born.
The process behind Nick’s art starts one of two ways: with a video feed (live from a camera, or pre-recorded) providing the source footage to manipulate. Or, by creating video on an old tube monitor by directly feeding it RGB color signals – video synthesis. From here, Nick’s imagination and catalogue of equipment are both his limitation and artistic inspiration. “A lot of my equipment is based on analog video,” he says, “it’s more fitting for my purposes. I like that old stuff is more hardware and physical based. All the stuff you do on a laptop, you have to go in there and program things, tell it what to do with a mouse [while] staring at a screen. With the video mixer, for example, all the controls are at my fingertips. You don’t have to dive through menus or anything. There are more options, and there is greater flexibility with digital, but having the immediacy of everything right there is kind of nice.”
The other limiting factor is cost. Working with HD would be nice, Nick says, but the classic equipment that birthed the video art movement in the ’70′s at Cal Arts and in experimental television studios around the world is now cheaply available on Craigslist and at university rummage sales.
Nick is running a modular setup for his video art. In addition to classic television studio equipment, like the Panasonic video mixer, Nick strings together a series of module boxes, each with their own specific function in generating or manipulating video signals. A longtime practice in synthesizing music, the module method of create-your-own-kit video synthesis has newly become available from LZX Industries, and is just now catching on. “Depending on what the night is, I’ll kind of mix and match my setup,” Nick explains. Nick recently wrapped an installation show on display at Vermillion, where he had televisions looping a selection of his raw synthesized video. On opening night, Nick added a large projection enveloping the dance area with accompanying visuals as an added treat for his supporters.
Music and video have gone hand in hand since before the days of MTV. The success of these historic collaborations led to the birth of Crypts, the band lucky enough to be utilizing both Nick’s musical and visual talents to great acclaim. “That was kind of how it started,” Nick says, “I met Bryce [Brown] through a mutual friend. He already knew how to do music stuff, so he showed me that side, and that’s when I was first starting to do video stuff, installations or whatever. [Bryce] thought it would be cool to have that be part of a band.” Nick had never been part of a band before, nor did he even consider himself a hobbyist musician. “I played the trumpet in high school. Which I do think helped, but… It was kind of weird. Our first show was at The Crocodile, then that year we played with Crystal Castles.”
Nick has a guiding philosophy behind his double helix performance. “What I try to do is to have [my video art] be an addition to the music. So the music is already creating this atmosphere or a certain mood; I use the visuals to enhance that.” Nick explains that during performances “I play the synthesizer, and then I do live video stuff with my other hand.” In an unusual re-ordering of operations, an interest in video art led to starting a band, and that led to becoming a musician, and finally that led to some form of single channel pre-recorded movie production. Nick shot and edited Crypt’s first music video for the song “Fancy” from their first self titled album that came out September 4th, 2012 on the Sargent House record label. “It’s definitely an achievement for me,” says Nick, “I tried to use a page of everything that I have, different techniques. I wanted to do the vector re-scanning, sound reactive, synthesized patterns, mixer feedback, camera feedback. I tried to use as many different techniques as I could.” The band conceptualized the video together, but the complexity of Nick’s vision made him the mastermind behind the look and feel of each scene. After getting blank looks from band mates as he tried to describe the feedback loops projected live into the scene, “I basically just told them I was going to fuck with it and do some stuff.”
Nick has lived in Seattle his whole life, he “grew up in Wallingford until about 1st grade, then moved to Kent” and now lives on Capitol Hill. When asked if he thought being part of a cutting edge art and technology city has given a him a leg-up in the video art world, Nick thought not. There are not many people doing what he does, even in Seattle, he explained. “There is a [video art] scene online. Ever since the LZX stuff has become available, I see a lot of people doing the same stuff I’m doing: art installations, or going out and doing visual nights with bands, or going on tour with bands, stuff like that. I think that’s pretty cool.” However, there is one area where being a mossback Seattleite has helped out, and that is in the supportive art community here. His reception at Vermillion was packed. “There’s different people doing different things. I feel like you see a lot of cross pollination, people doing group shows together, collaboration. It’s awesome. It’s a pretty good community.” It was just such a cross-pollinating collaboration that birthed Crypts, and continues to distinguish the music scene Seattle is renown for the world over. Nick is part of the Seattle Peach 100 because his continued success is an inspiration to everyone. He has demonstrated that motivation, creativity, and collaboration are stronger ingredients for great art than prior experience. If a Wizards of the Coast 3D modeler (Nick’s day job) can become an innovating artist and end up in a band playing with Crystal Castles in one year while working full time, what can you do? To follow Nick and to check out more of his work, look into his Videos on Vimeo, scan his Tumbler Feed, and take a peek at a collaboration Nick co-produced for I Want You Magazine. Scroll on to check out the Fact Sheet Nick filled out for us.Tweet
Nestled quietly behind a wooden gate next door to Hillcrest Market on Capitol Hill, stepping into Ghost Gallery is much like visiting a friend’s house. You’re greeted warmly when you walk through the door, there’s plenty of space to set down your things and relax if you like, and the rooms are full of fancy objects that continuously draw your eye. Each with it’s own story. The space functions as an art gallery with a built-in gift shop, a collector’s boutique for those interested in exquisite design. It gets it’s name from the days before the store front opened, when the shop’s owner and curator, Laurie Kearney, was doing a bunch of curating around town. She went by Ghost Gallery because the shows were in different galleries every time and never in the same location.
Laurie opened Ghost Gallery in April 2010 and it has quickly become a favorite among artists and collectors alike. “I try to push the limits of the space,” she says, “and now with all the furniture from ReRun Room, it’s fun to see the space change every couple of weeks because everything comes and goes.” With a one-two punch of taste and charm, it’s Laurie’s skillful touch that has turned this gallery into a destination. She gets her place in the Seattle Peach 100 for her tenacity and endurance, her eye for good work, and her sweet smile and peachy personality.
Her mother being an amazing painter, Laurie was nurtured to love art as she was growing up. She started making art as a high school student, focusing on photographery, and then began pursuing sculpture, as well, once she got to college. When her school dropped their photography program, she reassessed her future, and decided that the behind the scenes work was right up her ally. She took an internship at the college’s gallery, and immediately after she started working under the curator there, she knew that was what she wanted to do.
After college, Laurie fell in love with Seattle while visting some friends, and was ready for a change from her college town in Virginia. Seattle was familiar in all the right ways, but bigger, and with a promising art scene. She made the move, with hopes of doing graduate studies at UW, but stayed when she met her now husband, ex-Lashes alumni, Jacob James.
A multi-talented Jill-of-All-Trades, Laurie also plays bass in Ships, a local power-pop outfit with Jacob filling the role of frontman. “The first year we were together we had this six month stint of both being unemployed,” Laurie explains. “(Jacob) had just gotten done with a bunch of Lashes touring and wasn’t quite sure what he was wanting to do. We starting sitting around in my living room one day and playing out some songs and it slowly grew from there. It just works, it’s really fun.”
Laurie has been playing music since she was just a wee one. “My oldest brother tried teaching me guitar when I was really young, and I was just terrible at it,” she says. When her other brother went into the military, he left his drum set behind and Laurie started rocking out. In high school she played in an all-female goth band, who played house parties around the Chesapeake area of Virginia in the early-90s. She moved on to bass from there, learning to play when a friend taught her a few songs, and she’s continued to teach herself to play throughout the years.
Ghost Gallery provided an opportunity to bridge the gap between Laurie’s love for art and her love for music last year when she showed work from Jonas Bjerre. ”I showed Jonas, the singer from Mew, who are one of my favorite bands,” she says. “He also makes fine art, and I had randomly asked him last year if we could show some of his videos or prints here and he said yes! That was amazing.”
Ghost Gallery is known for putting on a fantastic soiree for their shows’ opening receptions, which is why Seattle Peach reached out to Laurie late last year to set up a show of our own. Ghost Gallery will host A Collection of Characters//Instant Photography by Seattle Peach this Friday, Feb 8, through Sunday, Feb 10. We will be co-hosting a party to celebrate the opening on Friday from 6PM-9PM, with DJs SH6RL6S6 and Kyle Johnson providing the soundtrack. Seattle Peach is really excited for this opening and we hope everyone will come out for the show and bring all their friends.
To get to know Laurie better, come by Ghost Gallery! She will treat you like an old friend, and tell you anything you want to know about the treasures she’s collected for the shop. Scroll on to see what she had to say in her Seattle Peach 100 Fact Sheet.
(Photos by Seattle Peach)Tweet
A Northwest girl, through and through, the latest installment in the Seattle Peach 100 was born and raised right here in the SEA. As a young lady, Sharlese Metcalf (or DJ Sharlese aka DJ SH6RL6S6) had her on-air debut as a DJ thanks to college radio at KGRG at Green River Community College. Since her return to the Emerald City, Sharlese has become a household name for many music fans in this town, thanks to her work as a DJ on the world famous, KEXP. Years ago now, she started as a volunteer and has worked her cute little buns off for her recent ascension to full-time host of Audioasis.
In addition to having one of the coolest DJ gigs in the city, Sharlese has also been holding down monthly parties at the Wildrose called Brush Off for what seems like forever. Following a loose DJ/local live band/DJ formula, the party has developed a reputation for building a sense of community as fans can expect to hear lots of different kinds of music, and always from their own backyard. Last year, Rxch Wxtch asked Sharlese to DJ one of the very first Second Sight parties, and was immediately invited into this ever growing collective of DJs and event production gurus. This girl stays busy–on top of all her DJ antics, she’s also done guest writing for the Stranger and even made a guest appearance on P Smoov’s popular mixtape, Face Scrunchers Vol. 2, where she reads a spoken word piece.
A local music diehard since birth, Sharlese is one of the peachiest ladies in this fair city. She is, without a doubt, a boss bitch runnin’ shit, and she is sweet as pie while she does it, without even trying. Her warm, welcoming personality and infinite wisdom has been a source of inspiration and mentorship for many people across the city, Seattle Peach included. Her promotion couldn’t be more deserved–Sharlese is fated to take over the world. To learn more about what goes on in that gorgeous head of hers, read Sharlese’s Seattle Peach 100 Fact Sheet below!Tweet
The next of the OG Peaches to find her place in the Seattle Peach 100 is none other than Miss Tanja Pavićević. A Bosnia native who came of age during the war in the 90′s, Tanja is a photorealist artist who moved to the states in 1999 as a refugee. Seattle Peach met her a decade later at a backyard barbeque, and her winning trifecta of sweetness, smarts and sass have won our hearts forever.
Growing up, Tanja was forced to mature very quickly when the war started, and the very real dangers of conflict didn’t leave a lot of room for youthful rebellions. Tanja has been an artist for nearly her entire life. When she was a young girl, her parents noticed that her doodles were quite advanced for her age–she was obsessing about creating perfect circles before she’d reached double digits. When she was 11, Tanja was sent to an art school in Sarajevo and has been studying art ever since, most recently attending Seattle’s Cornish College. Her focus has been with portraits for some time now, using surrealist details in the background of her pieces to help tell the story of her subject.
Seattle Peach is pleased to feature Tanja in the 100, because through her art, Tanja both processes her own history as a survivor of war, and the intimacy of her subjects enable the viewer to put themselves in her shoes for a moment. It gives a concept as massive and daunting as war a relatable narrative. She doesn’t politicize her art, she simply tells her story through the images of her past, and in doing so is inherently political. Art about war doesn’t need to be graphic or disturbing to be heart wrenching, and Tanja’s work is exactly that.
Tanja had her first solo show at the Station on Beacon Hill this summer to commemorate the launch of her official web site. She looks forward to doing more shows in the future, and we at Seattle Peach look forward to them, as well. To learn more about Tanja and her art, be sure to check out her website, and scroll below to check out her answers to the Factsheet.Tweet
If you’ve ever found yourself dancing among the glitterati of the gay scene, surrounded by decadent drag queens, buxom burlesque dancers, and glorious go-go dancers, you’re sure to have spotted Amoania. A breathtaking sight to behold, with big hair and a slight frame, Amoania is Seattle Peach’s number one favorite drag queen. She’s fantastically unique and intensely original, with an attentive eye for detail. Her look is always wildly creative and decidedly twisted. The makeup is stunning, and her fashion on point, drawing influence from gothic couture and creepy surrealism.
Seattle Peach met Amoania first, when she started cropping up at Lisa Dank shows. Introductions to Erik Ellefsen, the man behind the make up, came later, and he is truly one of the most interesting human beings I’ve ever met.
Erik came over to Seattle from Bainbridge Island right out of high school and about two years ago, some day drunk banter with Stella Rose resulted in the creation of Erik’s “god-form,” better known as Amoania. Stella dolled him up in some drag make up and over the next few weeks, convinced him to go for it. It wasn’t long before Erik realized that Amoania was “the vessel in which (he) chose to express (him)self creatively.”
Amoania has evolved much over time, incorporating Erik’s love for runway high fashion, fantasy, and monsterish beauty. William Scott Blair taught him how to create and style wigs, removing all restrictions for creative expression. These days, Amoania’s look is only limited by the depths of Erik’s imagination. More than just a performance character or alter ego, Amoania is an expression of Erik’s inner self.
Not long ago, Erik took Amoania a step further by learning how to DJ from Kevin “Nark” Kauer. Together the two created Super Threat, a dynamite DJ duo who rock the decks with high energy electronic music. “Lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Hi Fashion, Eero Johannes, My Robot Friend, and ‘squee,’” he says. Super Threat killed it over Halloween weekend, and Amoania gave a drop dead performance at Gay City’s massive Halloween benefit, her last big hurrah.
Sadly, Erik will be saying good-bye to Seattle and starting a new chapter in the Bay Area at the end of the month. The 206 has been blessed to host such a fabulous artist for as long as it has, and his presence will be deeply missed. To learn a bit more about the magical mind of Erik Ellefsen, check out his Factsheet below. Photo of Erik by Seattle Peach, photo of Amoania by Angel Ceballos.Tweet
Seattle Peach first met Ashley Graham at the Blush Photo loft in SoDo when the two of them were coordinating a gallery show of photographs at the Gibson Guitar showroom. Ashley was representing Blush through her PR company, WigPR, and Seattle Peach was there to give moral support and eat brunch.
A fan of most things media, Ashley found her calling in PR and marketing, which she currently does for Live Nation at their Seattle office. Pretty much Ashley has one of the coolest jobs on the planet. She gets to write about and listen to music all the time and helps coordinate massive shows and festivals like Sasquatch, Katy Perry and Lil Wayne. She’s playing in the big leagues and handles it like a pro.
Ashley gets her spot in the 100 because if you have ever worked with or even just hung out with her, you know just how peachy she is. She proves that you can get the job done in a cut throat industry without being a hard nosed beezy about it. She knows how to handle hungover media grumpies on day three of a music festival with grace and charisma, and can deal with demanding divas and their publicists, too. She is sweet and charming and a fantastic gal to be around. Seattle Peach predicts that Ashley will be making big moves in the not too distant future and that peach power she’s got on lock will serve her well.Tweet