Thursday, September 19, 2013

All The Boys I've Ever Kissed

This little book was my summer project, completed as part of a residency with the Book Arts Program at the University of Utah. It is currently for sale in my etsy store, along with a couple of other prints. I printed and put together an edition of 150 of these things, along with 15 artist proofs.

I've never printed such a big edition, so that was a fun challenge. It definitely began to wear on me when I got to folding and gluing, but it is an accomplishment to have a box all done and ready to go out into the world.

The book has a little portrait of each of the 5 men I've kissed in my life so far, along with a little information about what happened or what I was feeling on the bottom of the page. The last page is a chart and some statistical information. The chart, which shows the level of intimacy with each person over time, is one of my favorite things I've ever done.

The funnest thing about this book was what I did with the cover. Rather than producing an image to print, I put on my brightest lipstick and kissed the front of each book, creating unique prints from my lips for each book. Some of them look incredibly awkward, and others are really pretty, or even sort of sexy. I had to seal them with some Crystal Clear spray afterward, as lipstick doesn't dry like paint or ink, and it would continue to offset without this step.

This also got me into thinking about other projects. As I moved across the country recently, and I am currently unemployed, I don't have studio access. But I've started to have some fun with using my body as a printmaking matrix. I'll share some of that with you in my next post.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Love and Babies

These prints are the beginning of what I hope to be a fairly substantial body of work wherein I have pages that look to be torn out of a book, displaced from their proper context which doesn't actually exist. I'm interested in dealing with how things that happen to people change based on memory, and how people remember things differently even when they experience them together.

These two prints are about my niece, who I was able to see for the first time in a few years at Christmas time. She was delighted to have someone to play Barbies with, and I was so happy to have someone love me wholeheartedly, without judgement or fear. 4-5 year olds are awesome that way. That girl just exudes joy like no one else. At the time, I was recovering from a serious heartbreak, and I was terrified to open up to anyone since it had hurt me so badly before. It was a perfectly timed visit for me.

At the same time, I was absurdly baby hungry for a while. I've always been one to get silly and distracted, making faces and smiling and cooing at children I run into. But for a few months, I was ludicrous. I would have been perfectly okay with either God or Satan using me as a vessel for the Chosen Child. My twitter feed was nothing but sadness and talking about babies I saw. As much as I adore my sister's family, having her four kids running around, screaming, and giving us all the stomach flu helped with this quite a bit.

My niece chose to share a room with me rather than her parents and brothers, and told me beforehand that she would ask me to help her feel better if she got scared. She's scared of the dark, so she came to cuddle with me and calm down a few times. It was adorable and really great for my emotional state. But she is indeed the wiggliest.

Technically, this print stretched me a bit. To start with, I used french chalk to get rid of any plate tone on the etching plate. That added to the time it spent to wipe the plate, and also made it difficult to get my aquatint consistent. It worked well, but definitely took some getting used to. I also decided to use the same copper plate for both versions of the etching, to scrape and burnish out the text and then to re-etch it. This was dumb. I thought it made sense conceptually, having both these prints come from the same place seemed to reinforce what I was doing. But it took ages, and the acid strength changed substantially, making the second round really dark comparatively. I had to register each layer of screen individually, which was difficult and did not work out as well as I would have hoped the first time around. Since I'd already scraped my plate clean, I couldn't really reprint it, and just had to pick out the least bad for the "Babies" print. I learned enough to make things work better the second time around. Unfortunately, my ink dried a bit while in the tubs between screen sessions, so I had more issues with it drying in the screen. From that I learned to always add some water to older ink to make it work properly again.

All in all, I'm pretty pleased with this one. You can see it in person at my BFA show, along with some other work. This weekend is the last time you can see the show if you missed the opening. It will be open friday and saturday, at the Felt Building. (341 S Main, SLC UT)

Friday, April 19, 2013

Nostalgia, Parts 1 and 2 (Also, more openings/receptions!)

At the end of my last blog post, I said my next post would actually include artwork I made. So here is some. Even if I am mostly showing it to get people to come see it in person at one of my artist's receptions tonight.

This was done for my life drawing class. The assignment was to do two drawings, wherein two or more figures are interacting to create a narrative. I did my drawing on frosted mylar, exposed it to a screen and printed it, then erased and changed a few things, and repeated. My professor was surprisingly okay with my cheating on this.
My friend Rachel, who is the other person in these prints, was one of those pretty girls making ugly faces that was making the rounds on the internet a while ago. (Third from the bottom on that link, the one with the shot from below her chin in the middle) She has the best face.
It's a fun and silly set of prints. I'm happier with the first one, but it was an enjoyable way to go about things. I haven't really used this aspect of multiplicity that print offers in this way before, and I think it was a good little exercise all around.

Also, you can see these two prints (and others) tonight at the opening for the U of U BFA/Alternative show. It's at the The Felt Building downtown tonight (341 S Main St. Salt Lake City, UT). Here's the facebook event.

I've actually got a small backlog of art to post about, so readers of this blog, you have seen almost none of the work that's there. This diptych is downstairs as part of the Alt show, but I have 4 pieces upstairs in the BFA show as well.

Also, 35x35 is having their awards ceremony/reception tonight. They'll announce winners of things around 8.

There's tons of other awesome art things happening around the city this gallery stroll, too. I have friends showing at Alpine gallery, and there's a bunch of stuff around 2nd south and 2nd east. It's going to be hard to get to all of it tonight!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

35x35 and U of U Printmakers art sale

This is just a quick little blog to let you know that tomorrow evening I have a couple of art events going on. If you're in the Salt Lake City area, it'd mean a lot to me if you dropped by and saw them.

The first is a show that Artists of Utah, the ones behind 15 Bytes, are putting on. It's called 35x35. The exhibition is of 35 artists all under the age of 35. It looks like it's going to rock. The artist's I know in it are incredible, and I feel like I'm in great company. The opening is at Finch Lane Gallery, tomorrow (March 8th) from 6-8 p.m. There will be another night relating to this show that is like an opening if you can't make it tomorrow, and that will be on April 19th from 6-9 pm. Finch Lane is open from 9-5 monday through friday, and the show will be up until April 26th.

Along with this show, I want to call attention to a lovely write-up Lightening the Load: A new generation uses humor in art. There's a paragraph in there about me, and it just is right. Geoff has written a little about my work in 15 Bytes before, and he's always been kind with his words toward it. I love what 15 Bytes does, and I appreciate

This event will be tomorrow at Saltgrass Printmakers (2126 South 1000 East) from 6-9. Please come if you can. Buy a print. I think Ryan was hit the worst, and his prints are incredible. They are large, insanely detailed, Anarchist propaganda mostly and I love them. I have one hanging in my room and it just makes me shake my head in awe every time I look at it. Also included are the artists Derek Perry, (His work is fabulous. I always try and encourage him to use more glitter, but to his credit, he only uses the exact right amount. Really, beyond that, his aesthetics are just smart.) Kit Osborn, (Kit doesn't really edition things traditionally, usually. He has variations on images, pulling things together in different ways, and finding every possible way to make a piece work really really well. It's beautiful and sciencey and just so so good.) Mikey Perez, (Strange and compelling abstract forms. I look up to him a lot with the quality of his screenprinting.) Steve Thueson, (Steve does monsters and comic book type stuff, pulling from pop culture in the best way. His etchings make my heart glad.) April Bolz, (Pulls a lot from friends she made on a fishing boat. Her relief prints make me feel inferior.) and Tonii Humphrey. (I'm not as familiar with Tonii's work as the others, but what I've seen based around travel and stuff gives me a greater appreciation for the world where I live.) I think that's everyone that's doing this. It really is a great bunch of work, and I hope all of us sell something, because really, being victims of stuff like this is awful.

There's a facebook event for this you can join if you'd like. link

That's all. Next time I blog, I'll actually write about art I'm making or something.