Conversations: Ellie Herring & Holly Waxwing

The Living Spaces – Austin, TX (NYE) artists interview each other.


Living Spaces – Austin, TX artists Ellie Herring and Holly Waxwing interview each other post-NYE.

Holly Waxwing: What are some of your favorite things about the southeastern landscape (including plants & animals)?

Ellie Herring: Started thinking about this one and they’re tied to memories… So, honeysuckles. I have no idea if this is specifically southeastern, but it’s my #1. #2 is buttercups or, as I call them, “buddycups.”

EH: You know I’m going to ask this, so let’s just get it over with… What’s your favorite bird and your least favorite bird (preferably not extinct)?

HW: My favorite bird, other than the cedar waxwing ;^), is probably the northern lapwing. The whole lapwing family is cool (pied, sociable and river lapwings are especially cute), but the northern lapwing is my favorite. I’m into the whimsical wisp of hair that they have and the crazy oil spill sheen they have on their wings. Also their eyes always look kind of teary or longing. There aren’t any birds I really dislike, but I often mistake robins for something cooler, so I don’t love them.

HW: Do you think you might stay in Kentucky for awhile?

EH: It feels more and more like home every year that I’m here.

EH: Last time you legit laughed at yourself?

HW: If this counts, when I watched this video. I laughed really hard, but probably mostly out of anxiety.

Ellie Herring

HW: If you could sidechain a compressor/filter to a physical object, what would be the first thing you would try it out on?

EH: A pool of water, but I’d be on an inflatable donut ring in the middle of it.

EH: If you could sit alone in any two places in the world for an afternoon and make music, where would those two places be?

HW: A tropical rainforest, and where the redwood forests meet the ocean bluffs in Northern California.

HW: In which animals’ gaze or other presence do you find your sense of self or appraisal of reality most disrupted?

EH: Snakes. Doesn’t matter if it’s a garter snake or a python. Same feeling, I’m terrified to the point of a total mental reset. Last year I basically did the 40-yard dash in record time to get away from a six-year-old kid that was trying to show me a lil’ bb garter snake.

EH: Major (or minor is cool, too) historical event that you really wish you could’ve been a part of?

HW: The mid-to-late ’60s and early ’70s jazz movement. I would give anything to see Wayne Shorter, Dorothy Ashby, Miroslav Vitouš, The Heath Brothers or Bobby Hutcherson during that time.

HW: Most under-appreciated sound effect?

EH: The sound of someone typing. I really like when the internal mic to my computer is left on and I can hear myself typing. It inadvertently becomes a rhythmic thing for me.

Holly Waxwing

EH: You have to re-create the soundtrack for Ghostbusters. Who does the theme song?

HW: Autre Ne Veut.

HW: Favorite album(s) pre-1970s?

EH: This is a good one. It’s all my parents listened to when I was a kid was from the ‘60s and ‘70s, just all the time. Dee Dee Sharp’s It’s Mashed Potato Time, Marvin Gaye’s I Heard It Through Grapevine, and Simon & Garfunkel’s Sounds of Silence (I think it’s the first album I remember hearing that made me feel sad). The Pointer Sisters were on the verge of the late ‘60s/early ‘70s, I think. They’re an all time fav, though.

EH: Does visual art ever inspire you musically? If so, any specific examples?

HW: Absolutely! The quality of light in Sara Ludy’s Projection Monitor series is always inspiring to me. The archetypal, intuitive and shimmering shapes of Brenna Murphy’s work are also really inspiring to me. I sometimes make software synths with a particular visual in mind, and I’m not happy with them until I get them to sound like peach chiffon under fluorescent light.

HW: A certain color you are very at ease in?

EH: Light pink surroundings. Total opposite to literally dress myself in.

EH: Are you finding it easier to answer these questions than to come up with them?

HW: No! I have actually never seen Ghostbusters. :’(

Comments are closed.