Poster Installation: #IMEAY2015

In a few days, I'm doing my third installation in the Public Spectacle Essay series. A few people have asked about the background and how it started, so I thought I'd post that story here:

In March of 2011, I was driving along I-80 out by the Great Salt Lake. I looked out my passenger window and saw written on a concrete barrier at a rest stop the words I MISS EVERYTHING ABOUT YOU. The gigantic letters were scrawled in black spray paint. I turned around at the next exit, took a picture, and went on my way. But, I couldn't stop thinking about it. 

Since it was graffiti, that section of the wall was either cleaned or replaced by the county. Several months later, when I passed the rest stop again, the words had been erased.

Later that fall, a letterpress printer named Amos Kennedy came to the University of Utah and did a printing workshop (you can watch a gorgeous documentary about him here). I hadn't worked very much with posters or wood type. I'd been working on really meticulous fine printing projects. The first day of the workshop, he said, "Today, we're just going to put ink on paper". I loved the freedom of working with wood type and gigantic pieces of paper.

After that workshop, I was obsessed with printing a conversation I'd had with a friend about writing "hail Mary" love letters. In January of 2012, at least 10 friends helped me print a 7 poster essay called  “How to Write a Crazy Love Letter”. In the few weeks before Valentine's day I mailed or gave the poster set to 275 close friends, acquaintances, and strangers. They curated the exhibition over seven days, across the country, with hardly any advanced warning. 
After the first installation, I knew I would do two more. "Acceptable Reasons to Cry in Public" was curated and funded by Kickstarter users who became part of the public spectacle essay by contributing to the essay and then curating the posters nationally and internationally in November of 2012. 
I decided earlier this year to do the final installation. I organized it again on Kickstarter. I think the sentence, "I Miss Everything About You" is a both a love letter and an essay of grief. I'm curious to see what will happen as the words are put into the public space on about 1400 pieces of paper. If you see one somewhere, let me know. Or, take a pic and hashtag it on social media #IMEAY2015

You can read about the printing process here

Valentine Potion no. 15

For the past couple of valentines, I've sent out a postcard. It's lovely to experiment with dingbats and border fonts for a few days, then carry a gigantic stack of post to the mailbox. 



Some process pics:

update on "classification": is the story personal?

I've had a couple of people ask where I got the idea for "Classification" and if it came from personal experience. I'm fascinated with the origins and evolutions of stories, and while many of my stories don't have famous beginnings, I like the origin of this story almost as much as I like the story itself.

When I was in high school, I worked at a city pool as a lifeguard. The manager used to tell us a story about some lifeguards in another town who went swimming after hours during a storm. In the story, the pool gets hit by lightning and all the water evaporates. The lifeguards' bodies are found black and charred, melted to the cement of the deep end.

The story was clearly meant to keep us from breaking in at night and swimming--but, I was left with this horrifying image in my mind. So, at some point a few years ago, I decided it might make a good story. I started researching to find out what would happen if a pool got struck by lightning. I couldn't find any news stories about that ever happening in the U.S. (if you know of a backyard or city pool that's been hit, let me know). Except, I did find all these stories about bathtubs. Apparently, back in the day when people had metal pipes, it was normal to know not to take a bath (or even do the dishes) in a storm. It was also dangerous to talk on the phone.

I never wrote about the pool, instead I decided to focus on the small boy and his mom and what may have happened to her. Almost all the images in the story come from news reports and research (special thanks to the Salt Lake City coroner and New Mexico apple orchard owner who allowed me to cold call them and ask a million questions). It's an intense story, and I hope the intensity comes as much from the images as from what is at stake for the character emotionally.

If you haven't read the story yet, download the Connu app! (it's free!) (and awesome).
Or, you can read it here.

a valentine note

...with dingbats from the University of Utah collection

wings + ink

prints from my extravagant/credo book.
which some day i'll finish...

Polaroid + Ink

extra prints from the "July 1" project
i had no idea the train would roll past


From the Booking A Brouhaha show (2012 Artist's Books class). Mary and Emiline took awesome photographs.