sleepyard –  “… it’s the place where things adrift end up” (Steve Jansen 2014)

An interesting choice for the name of Steve’s tumblr page, where he posts previously unseen photographs and answers questions about photography and music…….obviously, to fans of his music, ‘sleepyard’ is the hauntingly beautiful Jansen/Elsenburg composition from ‘slope’, but his interepretation of it as being the final resting place for ‘things adrift” adds another layer of meaning. Or does it?


(handwritten ‘sleepyard’ lyrics by Tim Elsenburg – photo by Victoria Carter Clowes)

Over the last 12 months, Steve has posted a range of photographs to the page, including previously unseen shots of his former band mates, intimate portraits of musicians he has worked with and behind the scenes pictures from recording sessions.


Recording at Air Studios circa 1980.


The infamous Mellotron, an electro-mechanical, polyphonic tape replay keyboard (aka ‘sampler’). Air studios circa 1980.


Drummer’s POV. The Dolphin Brothers sessions at The Manor Studios, Oxfordshire.


Ryuichi Sakamoto & Akiko Yano photo session.


Yukihiro Takahashi fishing (catch & release). Karuizawa circa 1982


Recording ‘Rain Tree Crow’ @ Miraval Studios, France. Recording midi data on the Macintosh MacSE.

Steve also answers questions from his tumblr followers – mostly about his music and photography, but occasionally he will indulge in the odd response about his trousers!!

playgroundmartyr asked: Hi Steve. Thank you for sharing these fantastic photos and videos from your archive. I know you once said you would like to publish your photos, but the costs of a `quality` photobook were/are prohibitive. With the advent of sites like Kickstarter and Unbound where funds are raised first, would you one day reconsider ??

Things are certainly heading that way for published works, albeit books or music. Thanks to global file sharing it’s barely worth releasing music anymore as it’s simply not purchased in the same sort of quantities to make it sustainable, (particularly for recording artists who operate on the peripheries of the business). The idea of self-publishing a photo book is daunting because of the time and costs involved due to the fact that all prospective images have to be test printed. It seems the first step to take would be to talk to an accountant (not much fun in that).


Mick Karn. ‘Gentlemen Take Polaroids’ photo shoot.

prints from sleepyard may also be available to order in the same format as those listed in the imageshop

4 thoughts on “sleepyard

  1. Yeah, I think the most frequent comment I have heard over the last few months is “why doesn’t he release a book of his photos…..?” I think he is aware there is interest, it is just whether it is financially viable..


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