Category: In The Artist's Studio

Studio Soundtracks

Music is an incredibly powerful force, one that influences our moods and how we interact with the world around us. We asked our artists how music affects their creative process, and what they prefer to listen to in the studio. The diverse responses we have recieved can only mean one thing: that any and all types of music have the ability to spark inspiration!



In my studio I listen to Lisa Gerrard and Lady Gaga, Madonna, and Chopin, Buddha-Bar, Coldplay, Meditation or yoga music, Armand Mar, to name a few. Music is a driving force when I create. But especially instrumental music, it is very pleasing while working not to hear voices and words. I like to hear my own internal dialogue or just let my mind empty.



I listen to a lot of music and a lot of genres of music. Miles Davis, Wire, Bill Laswell, Steve Reich, Peter Gabriel and tons of others are on my digital playlists. I also have four generations of music players in my studio: a turntable, a reel-to-reel tape player, a cassette tape player, and a CD player. I grew up in San Francisco in the late 60’s when it was the center of the music scene. I’ve been obsessed with music ever since.



When I’m shooting, I love high-energy tunes to keep everyone on set in a good mood and working hard. My most recent on-set playlist was an 80s dance hits pandora station. Everyone loved it, including the animals! Lizzo of course, gets everyone in a good mood too! When I’m in the digital darkroom, I listen to cinematic scores or dark academia as find they are energizing for me but not distracting.



When I am painting, I prefer soft classical music, particularly the piano and cello. I recently discovered Sofiane Pamart’s fusion piano works. I have also been listening to Korean traditional music “Chang” (An act of singing pansori, Korean storytellingsong). I did not like this music when I was young, but now it moves me to a deep personal exploration.



In terms of listening to music while I work, I wonder if it is because I used to be a professional musician, but I don’t listen to music while I work. I really appreciate the silence and quietness of my studio. It helps with my creative process. However, I have a couple of guitars and a bass guitar in the studio which I play when I need a break…


More posts to check out:

Artistic Techniques & Secrets
Exploring Mixed Media
An Artist’s Best Friend