Friday, May 29, 2015

Another early summer weekend, and I have already made much of May, backyard cook-outs and lakeside weddings and tiki bar expeditions.  This weekend will be a quieter one, with a little mexican food/margarita action tonight, but probably mostly just housecleaning and mental mantainance this weekend.   April was a bear and May still had me running, so I need a two day span of solitude to recoup.  Otherwise, it's the usual layouts and cover designs and maybe a little writing when the wind is right. It's been raining all afternoon, and muggy. but it's supposed to clear to more mildness later. It's still my favorite time of year, summer, but not quite yet summer, but not really spring.    In a couple weeks, I have a weekend in Iowa planned, a short camping trip to Wisconsin, talk of a possible Michigan visit in July, then Independence Day hi-jinks, then a short vacation August,  and then like that it will probably be over and deplorable winter again.  But I am taking refuge and solace in these early sunrise-mornings, these long, lingering evenings.  In my routines after I get off work at 7pm and still actually have some daylight left at the end of the day..

Thursday, May 28, 2015

new titles

Just a sampling of what we've been getting up to this spring @ dgp...

Friday, May 22, 2015

Incidently, in the vending machines I mentioned below, there are some little mini original ACEO's I did inhabiting one of them.  They are just ink drawings (well, more like doodles in my case) on some cards that showed up serendipitously on the free table  They'll be in the machines until they are gone and replaced by something else this summer and each is signed and dated on the back.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

So it has been a busy couple weeks as we hit the end of the semester and already I am ironing out  more creative plans for summer.  I tend to be up early and reasonable productive most days, despite the early shift, and while the weather is a little schizophrenic (sandals one day, heavy coat the next) I am getting by. There is the usual press business --not just current books, but also beginning to read submissions for both next year's books and our snazzy lit anthology project, plus some work for Aesthetics of Research, including some cool mermaid stamped little promo goody bags that featured the zine below (some copies were also squirreled away for zine series subscribers), the buttons we've been making from discarded books, and some really cool clay pendants from one of the LAS faculty members.  We handed them out to the best answers to the question "How do mermaids reproduce?"  during the college's Manifest celebration, which this being an arts school and all, got some rather hilarious and awesome answers.

We also have a full slate of vending machines up that include not only some of the stuff listed above, but also some original little drawings by me (I think there's about 20 of them--so get one before they're gone.)  I'm plotting a few other interesting little  work-related summer diversions now that the library is a ghost town, including some silly taxidermy collages for a zine  and maybe some artsy scavenger hunt / geocache action.

Friday, May 15, 2015

5 random things

1.  Today on the bus, I realized I was listening to three french women talking and was understanding about 50 percent of what they said.  The odd thing was, I barely realized they were speaking in french until after a couple of minutes had passed.  Apparently my four years in highschool and one semester of college skills haven't atrophied as much as I thought.

2.  Today's grocery delivery included the most luscious. plump, bag of sweet cherries I've ever encountered.  I had to fight to keep from eating every single one before I left for downtown.  I will no doubt finish them off as soon as I get home.

3.  Today is the college's Manifest celebration and we've been working hard cooking up some freebies and vending machine goods to promote the Aesthetics of Research project, including some goodie bags that were only handed over to the best answers to the question "How do mermaids reproduce?"

4.  In other mermaid news, I'm formulating a plan for our next anthology project (in fact what I hope will be a continuing series of book art projects.) which may be a box or may be a sheaf, but will include things like broadsides and prints and chapbooks and whatever else we can dream up.  And not just for mermaids, but other things in the future like science and Japanese horror movies and all my other favorite topics.  More like maybe a monograph (in pieces) devoted to a certain subject or theme. It'll be in the vein of the Cornell project and Billet Doux and Rebecca Dunham's Fascicle. Keep an eye out for a submissions call very soon.

5. Another semester has come to an end and I will be decompressing this weekend (well, after Saturday's library shift) with an end of term drinking excursion and a cookout on Sunday.  Bring it, summer.  I've been waiting on your forever.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

 Another springtime sunday where I find myself confined to the library, but it's mitigated by the fact it's acually more like he pacific northwest out there today and not at all springtime in Chicago (as if that can acually be defined.)  So far today, I've laid out and designed a cover for Melissa Eleftherion's second book with dgp, have reseached a couple of journals I might be submitting to, and done some general writing related clerical tasks.  I wanted to actually do some writing, but I'm a little scattered and chilly with A/C cranked up in here, all of which makes it hard to concentrate on any one thing.
We are going into the final week of the semester, so I have one more weekend shift next Saturday and then I have an entire summer of free weekends--well mostly, at least once June rolls around.  It's been a rather swift ride since early April, so I'm looking forward to getting back to my usual routines. Since everything has been catch as catch can since winter and my ever present behindness, I'm also looking forward to getting back on track with some crafty stuff for the shop and some new more hands on visual projects.

It's also Mother's Day, and I've been watching all the posts on social media over lost mothers, the estranged mothers, the neglectful mothers and feel lucky that I actually have a pretty good relationship with mine (once I was over that teenage angst period and she was much less crazy--or maybe I was crazy and she was angsty).  I also feel like more and more I am becoming my mother, not so much in the details of life, but in my attitudes and gestures. The things I find myself saying. Our lives are vastly different and I realize occasionally that at my age, she already had a teenage daughter. Two daughters.  Had been married to my dad for almost 15 years.   Had gone back to work after my dad was laid off.   Had battled diabetes and cancer and the loss of both her parents.   And yet we look the same.  About ten years when I was going through an unfortunate perm phase, I had cut my darker hair a bit shorter than I was comfortable with and the resemblance was rather terrifying. (so much so that I vowed to keep it long from here on in.)  As toddlers (above), we looked much the same, though her hair would darken eventually while mine stayed blonde. The crazy thing is that while I would say my sister looks infinitely more like my dad and paternal grandmother, there is also something very similar in her and I that has made people suspect we were twins on occasion (though I don't see it beyond our occasionally similar hair color exploits.)  My maternal grandmother was raven-haired and slender and yet every year, my mother looks more and more like her, so I suppose maybe so do I (or at least I will twenty years from now), but again, I don't see it.  Perhaps it's a little like genetic legos, different combinations, but all the same pieces.

Sunday, May 03, 2015

art, or something like it

I have some new collages being exhibited as part of the Art in the Library series.  Their genesis was the cover that I did for Jessica Bergamino's double set of books for the press and I decided I liked the effect and should play a little bit more with it.  They will be up through early summer on the 3rd Floor of the Columbia Library, 624 S. Michigan.  if you are in the neighborhood, you should also stop on the 1st Floor to see the Aesthetics of Research installation of poems from Tara Boswell's Don't Come Crying to Me, pick up a mini-broadside from the vending machine, and check out the zine exchange offerings.

spring fever

April has, as it often does, slipped fleetly out from underneath me and I find myself in May.  It's not all that surprising , what with all the trips to a fro and general busyness in the form of wedding showers and readings and art openings and birthday festivities.  April has vanished again, but this weekend has been the warmest, mildest span of weather in a while.   I've been doomed to two library shifts, but I've been wallowing a bit in the warmth outside and walking about (well, as much as I can with the NFL nonsense parked in the park across the street.) Now that summer is more than just this strange mirage, I've been making my summer itinerary of things I want to do hell or high water --The Printers Row Book Fair, movies in the park, the Randolph Antique Fair, beach cookouts.  Meanwhile, inside,  I've been working on layouts and writing up interview responses and attending to general press business.  I've making cool little found zines for the zine exchange (see above).  I've been working on the blonde joke poems and some of the strange machine pieces. I've been thinking about summer clothing purchases (and maybe making a couple--see below), stocking up on sandals, and putting away my winter things.  Bring it on.