I just heard Peter Gabriel on the radio and it took me back.
I remembered seeing the video for Sledgehammer. That music video really blew me away and come to find out the Brothers Quay and Aardman Animation created the video. At the time I was living in Oregon and this was during the time of Will Vinton Studios being know for the California Raisins and their Christmas specials. The Sledgehammer music video was probably the first commercial stop-motion animation that felt like a work of art to me, even though I had no idea what those terms meant back then in 1986 at the age of 11, I just knew it was different.
Fast forward to a road trip that I took with my Dad when I was 16 years old. The road trip started in Seattle, driving to Las Vegas then Anaheim and going back to Seattle. The goal of the road trip was to see family in Las Vegas and go to Disneyland. At the time I thought Disney Animation was part of Disneyland. Yeah, that ended up being a disappointment. Anyhoo… Out of the music my Dad brought to listen he had Peter Gabriel's album So. That is one great soundtrack for road tripping, even though I didn't think so at the time.
Now lets skip forward to 12th grade, about 2 years after the road trip, and I was introduced to computer graphics in my art class. My high school had purchased 2 Macintosh Quadra 610s for the art room and my future best friend was the catalyst of making that happen. My friend was setting up school district wide networks and was hip to all the computer graphics programs. I was a simpleton that was about to get his ass schooled in all things computer graphics. Not only did my friend show me programs that could produce the cgi in one of Peter Gabriel's latest music videos but also to the fact Peter Gabriel was using computers to create his music. BOOM! My mind was double blown. This was the year (1992/1993) I was introduced to Photoshop, Illustrator, Painter, Bryce 3D, Strata 3D, Poser, Raydream 3D, Macromedia Director, Macromedia Extreme 3D, and Macromedia Freehand. Holy shit, I have never written all of them out and damn that is a lot of programs! I think there was a music composing program in the mix but I didn't mess around with that one at all.
And finally, 1998. In 1998 I had my first professional salary job, post college. It was at a online travel company. The sites the company owned were skito.com, mto.com and gto.com. The "to" was, obviously, for travel online. Their angle was selling travel packages centered around outdoor activities, golfing, skiing and maybe hiking. I think they made their money from the golfing and skiing packages. I don't remember what the mto.com was all about. I definitely think they were ahead of their time. This was right before Expedia and Travelocity. But there was a coworker at the company that introduced this newbie to the concept of "going out after work". The great concept that she taught me was to start drinking right after work and then by 9 o'clock you are drunk and stumbling home and then you order pizza and start watching movies and then after you eat as much pizza as your belly can handle you pass out watching movies. BOOM, mind blown! Of course this only happened on the Friday that you got paid. Haha! It was a fun concept to perfect. So to the Peter Gabriel part of the story. I and two other coworkers shared a small office room and we would trade off music playing duties and the for mentioned coworker brought in Peter Gabriel's soundtrack to Martin Scorsese's Last Temptation of Christ. I loved the soundtrack and couldn't believe that this artist has been effecting me at various stages of my life. So far four times! Which is pretty crazy, considering that each of those points of my life was very different.
I wonder if that is how some people viewed Picasso or maybe even the Rolling Stones.