Here’s to two thousand more

Two years ago today, I launched a little project called VANDOCUMENT.


I created it because Vancouver has a vibrant passionate arts scene – from theatre to visual art, from contemporary dance to music – and the amount of talent here is huge, the amount of fresh content being created is massive.

It deserved to be – it desperately needed to be – documented. To give the artists and galleries and festivals a record of what they’ve done.
To use as promotion.
To build their portfolios.
To help them continue to do what they love to do most.

And to connect Vancouverites with the best local emerging art. To show that there is SO much more happening than what is advertised at the VAG or coming to the Commodore.
To educate our city in it’s own creative culture.
To break down barriers and preconceptions.
To make our local art more approachable, more accessible.

So this is what we’ve been doing at VANDOC since May 10, 2013.

2 years on, this isn’t just my little project anymore. VANDOC is now a team of over fifty people (!): dozens of incredibly talented and dedicated writers, photographers, videographers, sound recorders, illustrators, dancers, designers, painters, editors, party organizers, social media pros, accountants, musicians, students, researchers.

2 years and hundreds of articles later, our collective ears are to the ground; we’re digging into the best and most exciting art created by Vancouver’s local and emerging artists.

Since the new year alone, we’ve published 29 original articles featuring the work of nearly 100 artists at 24 venues across the city. We tell these stores through gorgeous photo galleries, sensory-packed written reviews and interviews, video recaps, and even field audio recordings.

Some 2015 highlights:

  • We continued our relationship with SFU Woodward’s
  • and with VIVO Media Arts, documenting rad experimental events such as the Quiet City series
  • We triple-teamed Centre A for a photo / video / written opus
  • We helped launch a new artist interview podcast series called 8minuteswith
  • We documented some of the new Field House residencies, adding audio field recordings to our documentation tool kit along the way.
  • Hello Kitty-bordered photos landed in our pages(!)
  • and we set a precedence for discussing activist art and culture, with #KMFaces, video, in depth reporting and more

We’re often asked if we need more contributors, since it seems we have a big team (which we do), but the door is always open:
If you dig art & want to help in connecting Vancouverites to our city’s art, and want to help in celebrating our city’s artists through documentation,
if you want to get your writing, photography, video, or voice published
if you want to expand your network of cool, involved, engaged, creative individuals,
say hi!

Here’s to our team of over 50 incredible, amazing, inspiring, talented, a wickedly fun contributors! Here’s to Vancouver’s artists! Here’s to all the supporters of the arts! To all the enablers of the arts – those of you who throw events and make it all happen! Happy Birthday!

Support art. Love yourself. Connect with the people around you.

Big love. Here’s to two thousand more brilliant years of arts documentation.

VANDOC’s channels
fcbk + twitter + vimeo + tumblr + soundcloud + instagram


Trust: The Band Whose Music Keeps Musicians Keep Giving

Trust is awesome (one of my favs since I saw & photographed them at Pop Montreal 2011).
This new mix of their song “Sulk” is awesome. Listen to it now. Believe me, it won’t leave you sulking. Exact opposite, actually.


Draft Is Many Revisions Deep, Perhaps Hitting Perfection? Metalheadz Podcast 35: A Must-Listen From 2012

Another favourite of 2012, this Metalheadz podcast by Draft is solid every minute, from zero to 44.

from the original post:

Having originally caught the eye of BBC Introducing, and more recently the legendary label Metalheadz, Draft is becoming an artist to keep a close eye on. His musical output sits somewhere between dancefloor and downtime, all whilst keeping in line with an output you haven’t quite heard before. Experimental and deliberately difficult to categorise, Draft’s music draws on a selection of bass heavy sub-genres, referencing everything from drum and bass and dubstep to melodically glitch-driven chaos, all whilst keeping you wanting more. As he effortlessly flits from one bpm to another, Draft reveals a distinct sonic identity that is fresh, unique and downright impressive. Preferring to let his music speak for itself, there is plenty more to come from the 25 year old, including his Boiler Room debut in the Metalheadz takeover session, and a summer of festival shows. With an EP, album and various remixes lined up, 2012 is certainly going to be a year to sit up and take note.


And The Boiler Room Keeps Cookin’ Quality Tunes: A Solid 60 Minutes By James Zabiela

Holy. The quality from Boiler Room is so consistently unbelievable. Truly amazing.
Celebrate this Tuesday evening with James Zabiela‘s uplifting, incredible 60 minute mix you’re gonna love!


SBTRKT Gets The Party Started: His Boiler Room Set Burns Off These Grey Winter Skies

SBTRKT, who I was lucky enough to shoot when he played Vancouver’s Fortune Sound Club in 2011
continues to create sexy groovin’ tunes and killer mix sets,
as he does on this new Boiler Room set



Oozing Blues Soul: Big Sugar’s Wild Ox Moan Takes Us Back To 1993

This goes way back, to art school days…
When I discovered Big Sugar‘s album Five Hundred Pounds (thanks to my roommate G. Pinckney!) I couldn’t get enough of it.
Tonight, I’m there again.


Another Tomorrow: A Nice, New, Quietly Energetic Song by Jeff McIlwain aka Lusine

New track by an artist I was previously unaware of: Lusine.

As Larry Fitzmaurice says in his Pitchfork review,

The track shimmys and bounces

Give it a listen, if you dig minimal, quietly energetic electronica, you won’t be disappointed.