VISUALKARMA/ MAX RODRIGUEZ

avatars-000042211624-k3bokf-t500x500CH.89: If you were to categorize or describe the style of your music, what would it be and why?

MR: I’d say it’s basically vocal dream pop. There’s a dark tint to it though, and that’s what I find interesting to explore.

CH.89: Where do you draw your inspiration from?

MR: Mostly feelings, about many things. I consider myself a very sensitive person, and usually get the most out of personal and other’s experiences. I am quite an off-the-record philosopher so I constantly wander around my mind finding bits and pieces of quenched potential feelings that inspire my lyrics and stories.

CH.89: What made you want to start VisualKarma?

MR: I’ve always been musically encouraged by my family. My great-grandfather, my grandfather, my mother, my uncle and my stepdad, all with musical background; I’ve acquired great passion for music and art in general. I’ve always been a good reader and writer as well and currently I’m studying to be an art director. All of this together, I guess eventually summed up and the outcome was Visualkarma, but it was not until I finally gave up the shyness and started singing that it became real.

CH.89: How did the name VisualKarma come about?

MR: It’s a term that links up images and energy. Karmic energy is hidden in everyone’s acts, in everyone’s feelings and it reincarnates with us in every lifetime. So in some way, I believe that artists have their way of releasing this energy in images. Visual images, sound images, written images.

CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about what your creative thought process is like when starting a new album?

MR: I’ve just recently started writing some songs to release an EP, so from the little experience I have in the matter I can tell you that it’s not that different from writing stories or painting. I sit with my guitar in a relaxing, quiet and clean space and play around until I find a melody I like. I always try to search for natural melodies, nothing too complex and it’s very important that the concept of the song is already impregnated in the melody. Around that concept -which comes out of the emotions of the moment- I build the rest of the song. Usually I have three or four songs in progress at the same time, and each time I sit with my guitar, either a new song comes up or a new part for any of the songs in progress. Whenever I finish a song, I record it acoustically and pass it on to my band mate who lives in the south of Argentina, where I’m from. He creates the instrumental track, we discuss online what the direction of the song itself is, and I finish the vocals in Buenos Aires. This is our complicated modus operandi for now as far as technical matters go.

CH.89: What would you want people/ the listener to take from your music?

MR: To be honest I don’t think very much about what the listener is going to think about it. However, I strongly feel that if I do it from the heart and as faithful as possible to my own emotions, then it will surely convey the right message.

CH.89: Can you talk a little bit about your lifestyle as an artist and what that is like?

MR: I always surround myself with creative people. I think that’s what’s most important. I do not consider myself an artist and I’m far from being so, but creating is a substantial aspect of my life. I have a regular student’s lifestyle, but I certainly have some rules. For example keeping my mind and environment clean, being organized, thinking creatively as much as I can, looking for art all the time, listening to new music constantly, etc. All of that builds a creative mind, I think. I also have a regular full-time office job, and both worlds collide constantly.

CH.89: When starting out an artistic task, do you think it is better to have a particular direction/set plan guiding your way? Or, is it better to act on impulse and go from there?

MR: I think it depends on whether you have a concept you want to communicate or not. I think both options are okay, just as long as you’re true to yourself and do not cross your own moral limits for the sake of art. However, if I had to pick an option, I would have to say that art just by making art, without concepts, without goals, doesn’t mean a thing to me. I’d rather go after something in particular with each piece.

CH.89: What is one major lesson you’ve learned as an artist?

MR: I’ve learned that I must not close my mind to the opinions of others. There’s always somebody else who can give me great advice.

CH.89: Do you regard personal style & taste to be of highest importance?

MR: I think that as long as you feel comfortable with who you are and what you create, it’s just fine. Confidence is the best style.

CH.89: What do you consider to be the hardest thing about being an artist?

MR: The money problem. Keeping up with the struggle between a regular office job and the artistic mess inside my head.

CH.89: What is one thing you love about being an artist?

MR: The fleeting moment of absolute happiness that happens when your piece of work is finished. Just looking at what you have created finally stand by itself in one piece.

CH.89: Is there anyone in particular, any artists that inspire you in any way?

MR: Tuomas Holopainen is the creative head of the Finnish symphonic metal band Nightwish, which is my favorite band. His lyrics and his passion for life inspire me in a tremendous way.

CH.89: What do you think of technology in terms of being a useful tool for artists today?

MR: I think it’s wonderful. I do understand it has some big contras, and the wonder of opening an album booklet disappears at a faster rate each day with the Internet and online music databases. I still love the sensation of facing a new CD, a new book, a new magazine. But I think technology makes things so much easier. As long as we don’t fully give in to the laziness it brings along, I think it sums a lot.

CH.89: Do you think being an artist allows you to view the world differently from those who don’t follow creative paths?

MR: Yes. I don’t think it’s correct to stare down at “un-creative” lifestyles, but creativity definitely gives you a new point of view on some aspects. I think art brings you down to Earth, makes you want to be in touch with nature and with the origin of what we are, which I don’t know but I very much doubt it has anything to do with big cities, money and economy.

CH.89: Do you enjoy traveling? If so, do you have a favorite city?

MR: I love travelling. I love how it feels to be in movement, going somewhere you don’t know. I don’t have a favorite city, but southern Germany is the loveliest place I’ve been. Neuschwanstein and Linderhof castles which belonged to the Swan King are perfect places.

CH.89: Do you have a favorite author or book?

MR: Not a favorite author, but Tolkien is on top of the list, I also like Milan Kundera and some Argentinian writers such as Oliverio Girondo.

CH.89: Any future goals or plans for your music?

MR: I just want to give it the best energy possible. So far, I only am focused on finishing my EP and time will tell.

CH.89: What does being an artist mean to you?

MR: It means feeling like a child in an eternal playground, waiting for all the chords to be played and the challenges to be faced. It means being in tune with oneself, overcoming obstacles and feeling healthy pride on your creations. Even if you are technically not an artist until you are acknowledged as such, I believe each of us knows deep within, when to call ourselves that complicated and overrated word.

CH.89: Any last words on the aesthetic of your music?

MR: I think it is somewhere between a graveyard and a sunflower field.

CHECK OUT MORE ON: VISUALKARMA

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: