Friday, December 19, 2008

A closer shot

This is a closeup of my eyebrow hair.

New Microscope Camera

So I just got a cheepo microscopic camera. It's pretty cool and I'm looking forward to really doing something fun with bugs and plant specimens. So far I've had fairly good results with the images I captured of myself but it is difficult to keep focused and must be very close to whatever you are shooting. It also does video capture - I haven't even begin to wrap my mind around how I might use that. Still the obsessive geek in me spent about 40 minutes looking at my pores in the preview mode. I can't do anything large print wise with it because of the 1.3mp limitation, but still really good and might be truly fun for working in small things like tintypes or in grid installations. Nifty new toy!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Here's the long-awaited art sale info:

Last Minute Holiday Art Sale
Sunday, December 21st
11am - 3pm
881 Clarks Lane

Artists Participating Include:
Ron Jasin
Suzane Edds
Gary Bell
Scott Scarboro
Terry Wunderlich
Michelle Amos
Mary Yates
and more!

Join us for some holiday cheer and a lot of cool, affordable art!

Don't forget, we are giving away gifts from the artists! Come get some art!

Monday, December 1, 2008

KFW / LMDC Project Gets Some Press

About a year ago I was selected to be a partner artist with sculptor Joyce Ogden for a special project with the Kentucky Foundation for Women and the Louisville Metro Department of Corrections to create a community art work for the exit lobby of the jail. We recently got some nice press about the project and some of the other components that have evolved in the process of working in the jail in the Courier Journal. Check the article by Dianne Heilenman

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

New Chemistry Experiements

I've been in the darkroom. So much fun!!! I've been playing with gum printing and emulsion coating on a nice, sturdy watercolor paper. I think the best part is that even though I have used these processes before, I have to rediscover them each time. That's the one thing that I truly love about the darkroom, the sense of magic and wonder I feel when something actually works.

Ron built a UV exposure unit for his screen printing and I'm finding it very useful for my alternative processes. It's so much handier to have a powerful source of UV light than the sun, particularly since it's very overcast in Kentucky right now. Gear is such a geeky thing to love, but I like chemistry experiments and playing with dangerous light. It makes me feel a little more alive.

My friend Ethel was my gracious model for these images that I'm doing the gum and emulsion prints with. She was a total trooper hiking through the woods with me and getting in awkward positions for my human connection to nature photography. I truly love the interaction with the model, it's a true collaboration. The shot above wouldn't have happened if she hadn't suggested putting the sticky thistle pod into the shot. I'd been carrying that thing for about an hour, dropping it multiple times, and starting to resent picking it up. It was a perfect contrast to the lush ferns and the beautiful tones and soft texture of her hand.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


I saw Henry Rollins last night here in L'ville. He spoke for well over two hours. Not only was he brilliant and funny, but he gave me pause to think about some larger issues that have been troubling me. He shared some great stories about his travels around the world and how isolated people have become. Instead of being afraid of new cultures his approach is to hold out his big tattooed arm and just say "Hi, I'm Henry, what's up?" His experience is usually good with this approach and he has managed to travel through Pakistan, Laos and many other countries and feel welcome and truly get to know the other people. He is the example of the beautiful American vs. the typical ugly American tourist we ususally hear about. If we could all work towards being more open with eachother, even our neighbors, we would could perhaps evolve to a higher state of being. In other ways, Rollins also inspired me to think about how eveyone hates their jobs and is dissatisfied with the drudgery we all feel in our day to day routines. Eveything is based in fear, that's why people don't just get out there and do what they love. How would we transform the world if we all just said no to the BS and said yes to living. Rollins seems to truly live his life at 100% - sucking the marrow out of his expeirience on the planet. That's very punk rock and a great lesson in not racing toward death like we're all out of control. We are the masters of our lives and experiences.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


So, I recently was told that a local non-profit art space was going out of business and that an Executive Director search was going on. Having been a veteran of a particularly successful small arts non-profit I said naively - "Gee - why didn't I know about all this...I would have been interested in applying." I was told "oh, it was a very "exclusive" search...they were looking for someone with their own money..."!!! What the fuck!!! Since when were non-profit ED's supposed to be people of privilege? Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I thought that was the board of director's be "in" the moneyed crowd and speak on behalf of the organization to raise funds. Have boards forgotten their roles in arts non-profits? My observation is that most boards are willing to sit around and graze on their social luncheons and say what fabulous work "their" organizations are doing while they are actually doing very little for the organization in question. Too many cases in point here in my local art market...what is it like in the rest of the small non-profit art world...thoughts?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Masking Identity

Several recent experiences have me thinking about identity and the sharing of the true self. I'm terribly disturbed by the apparent phoniness I see around me and indeed perpetuate myself in the name of being a polite member of society. These masks are part of the everyday compromises that we all seem to be willing to make in order to feign survival in the wholly unnatural social order that is the world of earning our livings and fitting in. This is the reason that people don't speak up and tell oppressive or even misguided individuals our true thoughts when asked for an opinion when money is in play. Pure simple survival. The very real fear of judgment and the repercussions of truly speaking ones mind in the environment of business causes us to create sub-personalities to deal more gracefully with these situations. How do we cast off these masks to become truly effective communicators who stand up for our ideals without completely alienating the other party?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Art Studio Sale!

Several Unfair artists and I are planning a holiday studio sale - low prices on high art!
Dates / Times TBA - but plan to attend.
I'm studio-cleaning and have some treasures that I'm going to be letting go of for low, low prices to make room for new, fabulous work.
Stay posted!

Back in the darkroom....

Ok, I've be lazy an in absentia. Well, not really, I've actually been working my tail off which hasn't done much for keeping this blog updated.

So here's the low-down...
I've just completed study sketches for a new body of work and I'm totally jazzed to get photographing and printing. The work will be dealing with the themes of cloaking identity and shaping our outward appearance for public consumption.

The images I have started prepping will be very different from my older work. I'm looking for a clean, simplified expression of identity vs. the more lush, ornate work I have been accustomed to. I think this will be challenging for me because I'm so used ornate imagery and using the less is more philosophy is very new to me but feel that is one step I need to take to grow as an artist.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Artist Talk - LVAA's Food for Thought

Kat Squared - tintype from digital positive 2007

I'm no stranger to stage fright, that's why I choose to be behind the camera instead of in front of it. So I surprised myself by agreeing to do an art talk for the Louisville Visual Art Association (LVAA), now which I find myself in preparations for. Artist talks are truly wonderful and I really love to hear about inspiration, motivations and the subtleties of craft from people who amaze me with their work and visions. So now I’m in this role and I have to admit that while I’m confident in my work, I’m a little nervous about following last month’s speaker Jim Grubola who did an intelligent and interesting presentation at LVAA’s Food for Thought. Jim’s talk was truly inspiring and covered his art historical inspiration, his love of grids and rendering reflections as well as photographic images of his real-world references for his art making. Not to mention that his speaking style was warm and unpretentious, and possessed an element of humor that left the audience with a good sense of his artwork and techniques. Indeed he will be a hard act to follow.

Still, I’m look forward to my presentation and know that the bar has been set pretty high. I believe I’m up to the task with only slight apprehension about speaking to a room of art-lovers and connoisseurs. My talk will focus primarily on my photographic work in historic processes and I hope to be as engaging a speaker as my predecessors in this Food for Thought program.

For more information of the Louisville Visual Art Association and the Food for Thought program visit:

And on James Grubola:

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Cat and I

This is a picture of me with a photo of my cat Gabriel. I love this cat in a crazy cat lady way. I don't kiss his little gray lips or anything, but some of the finest moments in my life revolve around making Gabe purr. Once while I was doing work for my Tattoo/Fetish series my mother, who is normally adores contemporary art, asked me why this series ( was so disturbing and why couldn't I just take pictures of kittens on glass tables. I struggle with the kitten-art thing because truly I would love to be taking adorable pictures of cats all day long, but that doesn't seem like a good path for a contemporary artist. Maybe I'll get a chance with some commercial art someday, but it seems like mostly dog fashion (Collars and Couture) is what I get the opportunity to do. I'm not knocking the pups at all, I love doing that stuff, but it seems there should be fashion industry ops for cats too, ya know?

Mariposa Study #2 - painted photograph

Owl butterflies from Key West sanctuary. They look like little cosmic tree fungi with big eyes.

Mariposa Study #3 - painted photograph

I'm a bit obsessed with butterflies and took a slew of pictures down in Key West at a butterfly garden. Over the last couple of years I've used the images over and over again in various art pieces but have never just printed the single frame images. Several months ago I was leaving for an art residency and looking through my photo archive. I was struck again by the beauty and vibrant colors of the butterflies and thought I should really do something with these in bold, vivid color - but what? I printed a few out and started to play with some fabulous inks I got for Christmas from my beloved's mother. What a fun way to spend a residency! I love the combination of ink with the photographs and thrilled to start combining my love of photography and illustration.