Artist Feature: Brigid Mae Power
For our fourth "Artist Feature" we are extremely lucky to be chatting with the immensely talented artist/musician, Brigid Mae Power. She is the first non-photographer that we are featuring here at The Rothschild Photo Collection. Both her art and her music have an emotional intensity that resonates with me. Her music totes the line between experimental folk, country, and ambient. Her voice is equal parts primal and delicate. Meanwhile, her art is extremely visceral and potent. Hard not to be inspired by the lovely Brigid Mae Power.
Your artwork portfolio seems quite varied and extensive, but currently you have only one recorded album. Have you been doing artwork for a longer period of time or has music and art always been an ongoing passion in your life?
BMP: I have actually been writing songs for a good few years now and have three previous releases, but they have all been more or less tiny self-releases and CD's that I have brought with me to gigs. Music and art have always been an ongoing passion, but I think I came around to creating my own music a little later than I did with making my own art.
You have such a wide range of expressive visual works. It's quite impressive. How did you decide on the cover of your album with so many different pieces to choose from?
BMP: It was hard but actually Peter Broderick kept insisting on the fox being the cover.... and being very indecisive by nature, I just went with his opinion and then realized a few weeks later that I was happy with the fox being the cover and that the colors suited the songs.
Do you think you will continue to use your art as album cover material going forward?
BMP: Yes! I think so. Seems like it fits so far. If something doesn't fit, then I'm open to other covers!
Your voice is the most captivating and strongest element in your music, creating an atmosphere, melody, and harmony simultaneously. It's quite mesmerizing. Meanwhile, when looking at a lot of your artwork, it's easy to imagine your voice representing the contours of the various forms. Do you feel there is a relationship between the two?
BMP: Well, I guess there is in a very basic way... When I'm singing I feel like I connect with something, and when I am drawing I feel like I do too. I go to a similar place. So I guess it just comes out in both ways, through the voice or the pen!
A lot of your visual works are very colorful and somewhat complicated, whereas your music seems more minimal in a lot of ways. Is that a conscious decision or just how things have evolved?
BMP: I never have any conscious decisions with music or art, it's a very subconscious thing for me with no plan. So yes, I guess it's just how its evolved. I find it easier to express some intricacies through color and lines, whereas maybe my lyrics are more minimal as I feel there are some things I can't always express verbally. I'm quite interested in communication beyond words, that feeling behind them. Sometimes all those lines and complicated patterns have been sort of unraveling. It can feel like when I'm doing that, I am sorting out some things in my thoughts.
Besides album cover material, do you see yourself implementing your visual work with your music at any point?
BMP: I'd love to do some sort of animation in the future. So yes, I definitely see it merging.
Since you clearly are a very visual person, has photography at any point influenced your painting and/or music? And do you practice photography yourself as a hobby?
BMP: I have a song called "looking at you in a photo" .
It's something I wrote whilst looking at a photo of me and my son. So yes, photography has been influential to my work. I often might have photos around that seem to seep into the music or keep the flow of playing going if I feel a bit stuck. I generally do like looking at a painting or a photograph when playing. I don't practice photography though, I have never really felt the urge. So I am mostly an admirer.
It's been super inspiring catching up with Ms Brigid Mae Power. To see and hear more of her work you can find her here: http://brigidmaepower.com/
Dave Rothschild 2016