Between 1989 and 1999, Stuart fended off starvation with a combination of working in broadcast radio, video production, and as a musician. Having previously trained for about a year, as a sound engineer, in a large commercial recording studio.
At the end of that period, a major change of lifestyle was required, which consisted predominantly of relocating to a small farming town; population circa 500. With a period of time teaching music and band production.
Owning the darkest pair of rap-around rose-tinted sunglasses known to mankind, Stuart saw the world in a fashion that he thought would look good in photographs, no psycho-active substances required. As a hobby he purchased a second hand 35mm camera and started shooting landscapes and seascapes, first on colour negative film, then transparency film (slides), and now works with digital cameras.
He now lives in a small city, with a population of around 120,000 people. Butterfly population unknown.
Since 2002, Stuart has worked in various industries, involved in the process of transporting people and goods. Currently his work hours are far too unpredictable to enable any participation in a band (his preferred method of creating music), so once or twice a year he produces a solo recording, to relieve that particular creative urge.
Stuart does not engage in social media, such as facebook, twitter, etc.. In fact he hasn't even mastered texting with cell phones, preferring to use them for talking to people. He is a Linux
user who builds his own computers, for a hobby. Uses free and open source software for almost everything nowadays.
Recently, while researching modern internet radio technology, Stuart discovered Radio Paradise
, which reminded him of the craftsmanship and professionalism that once was the normal of broadcast radio operations. Having submitted a few of his photos, and having most of them accepted for the Radio Paradise HD Slide Show
, he decided to rebuild this website; removing the wordpress
installation that it was originally built on, and starting from scratch.
This website is static, having been written in HTML
. Construction of this site, was done entirely with a GUI text editor (Gedit
); some text for the site was produced in LaTeX
with the LyX
There is no back-end database or PHP, Python, etc.. dynamically generating content in the background. No cookies
or other tracking software. No proprietary plugins, such as adobe flash
are required to view content on this site; HTML5
is used for delivering non-proprietary ogg
How does this departure from contemporary norms for building a website affect search engine results? Who knows: I don't care.
Philosophy on the creative process
Spending more time on creating a single process, increases the probability of producing a higher quality work.
Before the advent of digital photography, it was a relatively expensive, time consuming, and technical art form. With the advent of point and shoot digital cameras, and no need to purchase or develop film, people started clicking for their lives. The result being enormous quantities of poor quality photographs being produced. The key here is that taking a photograph became quick, cheap and easy to do. When taking the same time and care, in setting up and taking a shot, with a digital camera, as an equivalent film camera, an equally credible photograph can be produced.
This also can apply equally in creating other art forms, such as audio, video, and even websites.
In todays fast paced world, those of us interested in being involved in creative processes, would do well to step back and slow down.
Strive, not merely for technical proficiency, but above all, strive for elegance in process.
Some general thoughts, and notes on what I use for producing creative works.
Photographs where predominantly taken with a 35mm Canon EOS650, using colour negative, or transparency film, or a digital Canon 5D mkII.
All software used for processing is free, open source software. For handling the raw digital files generated by the 5D mkII, I use UFRaw
. For HDR
conversion, I use Luminance HDR
(formerly known as Qtpfsgui). For assembling and colour correcting I use either GIMP
. GIMP only goes as far as 8 bit colour, which is completely fine for the web, but not ideal for print, whereas Cinepaint works up to 32 bit floating point (it has been used for some major hollywood movies). For batch sizing, I use the command line ImageMagick
, in a bash
My personal preference is for vibrant, over saturated colour in my photographs. But have started to develop an interest in black & white lately; this has proved more of a challenge than I had anticipated. Though it is proving rewarding, when following my philosophy on the creative process as noted above.
The music tracks on this site have been produced using a mix of proprietary and non-proprietary software. earlier material like “Cruising on the Hauraki” and “Over the Sea” where produced, only a few years after I stopped playing. So I hadn't lost as much playing finesse, as I have now. But I was new to using digital recording, as opposed to the analog systems, that I had been trained in. More lately, the tracks “Export” and “Pulse of Nature” which are recorded entirely with free, open source software, and a much better understanding of operating in a digital arena, is also at a time when I have lost much of the playing finesse that I used to have.
As a quick note on these tracks. They are intended to be listened to through a stereo, not laptop speakers. At the very least, headphones will suffice, I would not even bother trying to listen with laptop speakers, as they simply lack the frequency response to play much of the sound spectrum, making up the tracks.
I will not speak on the proprietary software, that I have used for audio work, because it is not better, and in many cases, not as capable as the free, open source software that I have replaced it with.
Non-proprietary software that I use for audio starts with the patching system JACK
(Jack audio connection kit). Previously I used Ardour
as my DAW
, though am in the process of transitioning to the NON
suite, which to my purposes is a more elegant solution. Hydrogen
for drums, and Jamin
for mastering. I have done some tidying on most of my earlier recording masters with NON and Jamin.
I use a lot more non-proprietary software for audio than there is space for here. Feel free to email me if you would like to know more about doing audio work with free, open source software. My email address is at the bottom of this page.
As at the writing of this page, there is no video hosted on this site. This page section will be updated when some video is added. The reason there is currently no video is quite simple; all of the video material I have on hand, has been made for other people or organizations. I do have in mind, what I intend on producing for this site, the time-line for when that happens is not clear.
Good options for editing with free, open source software can be broken down into three groups.
Home video: Openshot
Semi professional: Kdenlive
Top of the line: Cinelerra (with the caveat that it is not suitable for the work flow of a commercial environment: The capability is unquestionable)
I can be contacted by email:
I welcome enquiries about any aspect of this website, the works contained herein, or doing creative work of any kind, with free, open source software.
Any ideas for creative collaboration would be welcomed.
Using material from this website
All content on this site is copyright. With the exception of licenses displayed for specific material, all rights are reserved. If you wish to use any content from this site, contact me: If I am agreeable to your use, I can provide full definition/resolution versions of any content presented here.