The Bradcast

Hello and welcome to whatever it is I’m doing now.

Currently, in brief, I’ve got my own TV channel because the internet is a futuristic wonderland, and I’m using that channel to paint pictures.

And some other stuff.

It’s kind of a Winter project that has evolved from the live painting I’d been doing over the Summer.

Bradcast

The Bradcast is a show in three segments broadcast live over several hours in a night. It’s very much like traditional television with a schedule, but it’s live, interactive, and commercial free.

The first segment is live painting, music, and talk; kind of like Bob Ross, but longer and with happy little vampires instead of clouds.

Broadcasting directly from my canvas to your screen, you can tune in and watch me construct whatever image I’m working on, brush-stroke by brush-stroke in real-time. Often I’ll discuss my processes and projects as I work, and when I’m not doing that, I’m curating my favourite tunes for deep dives into the flow of painting.

Sometimes I’m on digging into big serious landscapes from session to session over a week or two. Sometimes it’s character design and concept art; sometimes experimental doodling; abstract work; or illustrations for some of my written projects.

Whatever it is that I’m working on, I’ll schedule out blocks for each in the show notes so that you can pick and choose which you’d like to tune in for.

It’s kind of what I’d be doing anyway, except now that I’ve got people from around the world dropping in over my shoulder, it keeps me at my highest level of discipline.

It’s all live, unscripted, and so far, unarchived. That means, unlike all those big evergreen podcast forests out there, this show only goes out once; fresh, unfiltered, and unedited.

I leave behind nothing but paintings.

I may begin recording sessions later for time-lapsed replays, but for now this raw, experimental state is starting to feel more like a feature than a bug.

The second segment of the Bradcast is Blanket Fort Adventure Theatre.

Blanketfort

When I was a kid, the best, most luxurious way to watch a movie was by building a blanket fort around a TV, hooking up a VCR, and blasting through a stack of rented VHS tapes with your pals over a sleepover weekend.

In the spirit of those days, I’ve added an after-hours segment to the Bradcast where you can tune in to see the movies, TV shows, clips, music videos, and other performances that I love and recommend. From pulpy action adventure films to cartoons, foreign films, documentaries, stand up comedy, and rare curiosities – I’m playing the stuff that keeps me inspired with its weird, reckless creativity.

The schedule changes every week. Set your phone reminders accordingly!

Neon

The last segment is the Neon Underground; a station break where I put in a session with some classics from the realm of video games from the 80s and 90s. Think of it as classic rock radio FOR YOUR EYES.

And yes, those are fully the Pacman Ghosts haunting that forest in the image above, and that is definitely a 1UP mushroom karate-fighting a Chanterelle.

The tree might be a cat.

Here’s how to watch:

You can tune in to the Bradcast on any device. You can watch it on the web over at www.twitch.tv/bradcollins on your computer or tablet, but you can also download the twitch app on your mobile device or game console and watch it that way.

I personally watch (when I’m not painting) by streaming it through the twitch app on my Playstation connected to a digital projector pointed at a huge screen.

It’s not as complicated as that actually sounds.

Just grab the app on one of your devices (be it console or mobile device) and then visit my profile there to watch and/or subscribe.

I post a schedule to the show notes page every Sunday so you can figure out what bits of the show you might be interested in over the course of the week. Don’t worry, if you forget, I’ll nudge you on whichever social media platforms you follow me on so you’ll know when I get started.

When all is said and done for the night, I post works in progress, lists of albums played, trailers, clips, bugs, and relevant links to things talked about to the same show notes page.

The beauty of this quasi-radio-television-internet format is that there’s lots of ways to have the Bradcast around. Here’s a few suggestions:

  • Watch and listen to it all! Hey, why not? It’s kind of like a painting lesson with some music with cartoons and movies. I’d watch that!
  • If the paintings are moving too slow for you, just minimize the video and put it in the background like it was a radio station. The music is always good, and the banter passable. Tweet the DJ if you want to make a request, shout-out, or dedication.
  • You could mute the audio and put my broadcast on one of your screens in the house as a living painting. Whatever I’m working on over the course of hours will be a one-of-a-kind live performance never to be repeated. Good, bad, or ugly, it might make an interesting/fascinating/disappointing/enchanting conversation piece for your party.
  • Build a blanket fort around your favorite screen in time for the cartoons and movies to start.
  • Put the Bradcast on a screen and paint, draw, dance, or create along with me. I’ll be your personal creative workout tape.
  • Discover new and ever more absurd ways of watching the Bradcast and send them to me so I can feature it.

Here’s how to interact:

Hey! Are you a fan of cool movies, art, and music? How about comic books? Video games? Pop-Culture? Yeah?

I mean, why aren’t we hanging out?

If you like that stuff, and particularly, if you like MAKING that stuff, then there’s a good chance that you’re my people. If you’re like me, you’ve probably got barrels full of dry powder waiting for just a spark of outside enthusiasm to make it explode. Am I right? If so, bring some of your creativity around and we’ll make fireworks as big and noisy as you like.

That’s the general. In specific, you can interact with the Bradcast in a bunch of ways.

  • Twitch: There’s a chat window built right into the side of the channel window. Remember the old IRC days? Kind of like that.
  • Twitter: Tweet at me and I’ll pass it along to the audience. Song requests? Dedications? Shout outs? Right here.
  • Instagram: Art and photo-journal. Follow for show notifications and pictures of stuff.
  • Facebook: Follow me on facebook to check out my artwork, but also join the Bradcast facebook group. That’s the place you want to be if you want to do the community fam-jam thing.
  • Tumblr: I post the schedules and show-notes to Tumblr. You can follow it directly for all the news you could want about everything going on in the Bradcast.

Here’s how to help:

I’ve been broadcasting my painting sessions intermittently since June, but I’ve only been at it in this more rigorous, structured format for a couple of weeks so far. I can use all the help I can get in terms of audience building and feedback.

Share: 
Share this article. Share the schedule. Share the links to the shows when I start blasting them out there on Twitter and Facebook.

If you’ve got friends who are interested in art, film, music, literature, comic books, video games, ninjas, technology and experimental broadcasting – send them my way. I know they can be incredibly tiring, so I will do my very best to take them off your hands and tire them out.

Interact: 
If you’re enjoying what you’re seeing and hearing, jump in and be part of it! Send me comments, questions, recommendations, dedications. Live tweet the blanket fort. Grab a sketchbook and make my broadcast your art time. Draw with me. Paint with me. Send me pictures. Send me pizzas and pizza emojis. Find other people watching along with you and send them stuff. Community!

Be My Guest:
Are you an interesting person working on interesting things? Perhaps you’d like to be a guest on the Bradcast! Contact me, and we can talk about getting you on the show to talk about you and the projects you’re working on.

If you’ve got products relevant to the show, we can talk about sponsorship as well.

Patronize me: 
Vote with your dollar to support the programming you enjoy. The Bradcast is free, live, and full to the brim with interesting content designed to teach, inspire, and entertain. You can help keep it on the air by throwing a dollar or two in my hat, or by subscribing to my projects via Patreon. This isn’t money that’s going to a big corporation, or a bunch of managers and middlemen. This is going straight to me, the artist, to keep a roof over my head and coffee in my veins. It’s a tough gig being an artist some days, but I love it. With very little help from a few people, it could be so much easier and I could love it even more.

Advise me: 
If you’re an experienced radio person, live-streamer, or social media expert, help me by making my game better. Help me grow my audience and smooth out some of the rough edges (but not all of them).

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The Roadhouse Glow

The Return of Twin Peaks has been a spectacular feat of television in the midst of what is quite rightly called “the golden age” of TV. How, in the age of the “binge”, when almost any piece of recorded film is a few keystrokes away, do you hold the rapt attention of the most sophisticated audience in history from week to week?

Keep them guessing, maybe. Or in some cases, scratching their head.

According to what I’ve seen on social media, it’s Twin Peaks and Game of Thrones delivering on that classic “tune in next week” experience on TV; where cliffhangers and upheavals keep audiences on the edge of their seats and in circles around water coolers. It used to be sort of standard, but now it’s a rarity of anticipation that I’m savouring.

The Walking Dead, too – but I left that show somewhere back in the Prison.

Bang Bang

Bang Bang

Twin Peaks continues to fascinate in this regard because it’s not a Shakespearian tragedy full of war and politics and zombies (take your pick as to which of the other two shows I’m referring to); it’s more like a dream and a soap opera. A painting and a music video.

I’ve painted four illustrations in tribute to the show’s aesthetics already, and with the return, there’s been so much gorgeous Lynchian imagery to go swimming in I couldn’t resist doing another. As it stands now (part twelve only having aired a couple of days ago), Dale Cooper is still lost in the periphery – tangled in the curtains between worlds. Apparitions are part of the fabric of the show, and seeing Agent Cooper approaching the roadhouse alone while simultaneously walking the floor of the Black Lodge was where my heart was after watching him sleepwalking through memories of black coffee and cherry pie for so many episodes now.

This was the third of my live paintings; broadcast over the intertubes over the course of a few days. The soundtrack to the broadcasts were provided by Roy Orbison, Dave Brubeck, Booker T and the MGs, and Nine Inch Nails among others.

I should point out that the above image is reduced in size by quite a lot in order to economically put it online, and also to avoid image piracy. The source files, and the image as printed to giclee are much richer in colour and in painterly detail.

I  tried to paint it fat and juicy with colour and contrasting lights and darks from the outset. If you dig in, even the shadows are full of purples and greens set against each-other in balance.

The whole scene is not only lit, but transformed by the light of the neon sign. If you let your eye rest in different places, it has the effect of a hologram; the wood of the building becoming lit from within. Inspired by painters like Edward Hopper, I wanted it to feel as much like a dream as the show itself does.

Do I overexplain this stuff or what?

I can’t wait to see what’s coming next Sunday. There’s only a few episodes left, but I’m not expecting any kind of closure on this story.

If you like the image, feel free to pick up a print or a card or a sticker. You can read about some of my other adventures in Twin peaks here, and here.

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