I was going through an unusual dip in creativity after completing twenty months of solid work for my solo show in LA. Everything was slow and laboured and I was lacking the spark . . .


One morning in January I was checking Instagram and noticed a post by Mat Peters saying that he was proud of the new EP from Ist Ist, a band that I wasn't aware of at the time.

I pulled them up on Spotify and was blown away by what I heard. It transported me back to my late teens as a student in Liverpool and the excitement around the Post Punk and Indie music scene at that time. A time when vinyl was treasured and a record collection a status symbol.

I checked out their web site and ordered the red vinyl and CD of the Everything is Different Now EP - I haven't played vinyl in years - but I just had to get this.

I was totally hooked on the music - the spark I needed to start painting again.

So with Ist Ist on my sound system I started developing ideas for a painting based around the band and their music. They have a really strong crisp identity and there was plenty of great material to work with.

The response from Ist Ist was incredible . . .they were really supportive and enthusiastic about my work . . . . this is when art is at its best for me . . . art inspiring art. The painting became more than me and my studio . . . it was Ist Ist too.

I saw Ist Ist live in the Sebright Arms on the 1st March, a gig I was hugely excited about and one that did not disappoint . . . I was in my element. This made up for all those incredible gigs that I couldn't afford to go to as a student in the late 70s. A perfect set by talented musicians creating a sound that is powerful and subtle in equal measures. Inspired.

 @ististmusic | 24" x 24" | Original Oil painting on linen


Work on the painting was exciting . . . once started, it came on in leaps and bounds as I posted regular updates and got positive response from the band and my followers.

I started off with a photo I took of a guy walking across Trafalgar Square that I really wanted to paint. I wanted to brand his T Shirt with an Ist Ist logo or graphic element.  


I also wanted to use the sound waves from their latest EP and eventually came up with the idea of using them to represent islands fading away into the mist. Apt, when listening to "I Want To Disappear."

For the islands I used the tracks: I Want To Disappear, Entry and Undignified.

Their "Buldings" motif was perfect for a T Shirt design, crisp and clean and instantly recognisable. It was a blast removing the existing "STAFF" logo and replacing it with this.

The final piece was the Ist Ist name which appears on the bag over the guys shoulder.

I completed the painting in time for the delivery date.



I knew that I wanted a title that would point the viewer to the band and their music . . .  "@ististmusic" was perfect, directing viewers to the Ist Ist pages and social media.

I haven't seen an Instagram name being used as a title or an artwork before so it will be interesting to see how people react to it.



8th Annual SupersonicArt Invitational - April 6th, 2019  Hashimoto Contemporary, San Francisco, USA
My painting '@ististmusic' for the 8th Annual @SupersonicArt Invitational group exhibition opening Saturday, April 6th at @HashimotoContemporary in San Francisco, presented by @Spoke_Art"  

Some things are just meant to be. Zach Tutor of SupersonicArt contacted me when I was about half way through my @ististmusic painting and asked if I'd like to have a piece in his upcoming show in San Francisco. I said yes . . . and set about getting this piece finished. I wasn't sure I could reach the deadline . . . but I had a new piece for him if I couldn't. A deadline always motivates me. The piece was ready on time.

I have been a keen follower of SupersonicArt for many years and was delighted to be invited by curator Zach Tutor to participate in this prestigious group exhibition in San Fransisco.[ This annual exhibition features the cutting edge of what Zach Tutor refers to as "Deep Pop". Mixing Fine Art and Illustrative ideals, Tutor's curatorial vision has amassed over 650,000 Tumblr followers.]

@ististmusic, paintings sold in San Francisco


@ististmusic, Limited Edition Print -

Talking with the band about possibilities for the image, we decided to release a special Limited Edition Print. I will be doing numbering and signing them and the band will also make them available on their website with their signatures alongside mine. A great keepsake for fans of the band.
We decide to do a small Edition . . . while making it large enough to not disappoint the bands followers . . . so 90 is the number.
The proofs came through a few weeks ago and were looking amazing so we hit the button and released the edition at 10am

Check out both paintings inspired by Ist Ist:

@ististmusic | 24" x 24" | Oil on linen                                                Under Your Skin | 24" x 24" | Oil on linen

Check out Ist Ist here:    

Facebook:  @ististmusic 

Instagram:  @ististmusic   

Spotify: spotify

IST IST Live at Sebright Arms in London

Sound Waves from IST IST's


Second Ist Ist Painting -

Under Your Skin

I had such a blast working on the @ististmusic painting that I decided I'd do a companion piece. This is a female version and sits comfortably with the original piece.

This painting will be having its debut outing at Galleri Hegemann in Munich, Germany from 25th October to 20 November 2019.

Under Your Skin | 24" x 24" | Oil on linen

For this painting I've used their "Factory" logo as a building in the distance as well as a tattoo on her arm. Her T Shirt is branded with "IST IST"