"I call my collection The Fabric of Rhythm because this art is a view into the inner workings of the motions I use to make rhythms. With drumming, we hear the impact of the stick on a drumhead or cymbal, but we don't hear the motions made in the spaces between the notes. With the process that we used, you see both the impacts and those spaces, as if we are looking into the very fabric of the rhythms."
Using Vic Firth Lite Stix, where just the tip is illuminated, and another pair where the entire stick is lit, Smith performed a variety of movements and strokes, from double paradiddles to press rolls, captured by a still or moving photographer, in front, above, or behind the drummer, over a period of ten to thirty seconds at a time. This produced striking images of colored lines that show the trajectory of Steve's unique 'symmetry of motion', ranging from completely linear and literal patterns to the wild and abstract where you wonder what he was playing and, of course, what it sounded like.
Steve's pieces even have sticking notations included with some of them.
"It exercises a different part of my artistic nature. With a new album, there's a stress of 'Am I happy with my performance?' But this is so unique and outside of anything I've done before. I'm having a lot of fun."
Only one hundred canvases will be produced for 'The Fabric of Rhythm'. Each piece is numbered and signed by Steve. More info at stevesmithdrumart.com.
Previous drumming artists to participate in SceneFour's attemtps to capture percussion on canvas and translate rhythm into visual art, include Incubus drummer Jose Pasillas, former Guns n' Roses/Velvet Revolver drummer Matt Sorum Def Leppard's Rick Allen.