Jane Lui's year-long one-take wonder

Here's a fun submission I received this week, from Jane Lui a musician in Los Angeles.

Jane writes, "Long time reader and first-time subscriber to your magazine, so glad to be onboard with your empire. I'm a musician/songwriter who likes cardboard as a medium, and have spent most of the year building miniature sets for a one-take music video that we just released. Hot air balloon, forest machine (moves), city scape for aerial shot.... I like seeing evidence of the hand; this is my approach to life in general. it hasn't made me much money, but has made me very happy."

Here's Jane's video!

In perusing her site, I also enjoyed her cover/mashup of Pharrell's "Happy" — bonus that it includes a typewriter! "I'm classically trained, but like the alphabet, you learn it then throw the rules away to make it yours. I like music, but I love sound. It's really invigorating to find musicality in things not meant for music: handmade music boxes, typewriters, service bells, jugs, suitcases, books, glassware. Some will call it a carefully crafted sound, I think it's just obsessive because I know I'm neurotic. I try to make my stuff feel lovable, enduring, and usually think too hard doing so and forget to eat lunch 3 hours ago."

104 to 50

An artist and professor living in Israel has been documenting the moments in her life leading up to a milestone birthday. As of today, Talia is 104 days away from her 50th birthday. We're happy to see that moment number 152 was accompanied by issues 12 and 13.


Inspiration juice

We received a lovely email from reader, Maria Carluccio telling us just how much she loves UPPERCASE.

"I always save my mag for late at night, after all is quiet. I get my inspiration juice and then the next day I'm all ready to try and create."

She wasn't shy about sharing her UPPERCASE affection in a recent interview promoting her new project. Wall Stories, a line of repositionable fabric stickers, introduces art and storytelling in ways that encourage kids to be creative. The mural sets come with ideas from Maria to inspire kids to create their own stories.


Subscriber Profile: Amanda Kelshaw

How are you creative in your daily life? Being a very project-focussed person by nature, I'm often frustrated by need to really nail any one creative pursuit at a time...so last week seemed to be about learning about letterpress, next week I'm sharpening up my CS5 skills. And it was vintage Vogue reproductions prior to that.

What are you most curious about?
What makes people tick.

What is your most prized possession?
I recently stumbled across (and promptly grabbed, well, paid for that is) a set of pretty lovely 1960 'Home' Magazines. It boasts brand new types of linoleum, appliances and project homes from the time. An absolute treasure trove.

What is your favourite letter of the alphabet and why?
A little biased, but I do find a good serif capital A to be pretty satisfying. It seems quite intent on letting you know that there's only really one for it to be properly formed and therefore legible.

What is your favourite colour?
Grey. Yes, gunmetal. Cliched but true.

What is your preferred creative tool?
A close call between my hands and my eyes. When limited by time (and/or small people), I sometimes Samantha nose-twitch an idea until I can get my hands on the project in real life!



Are you a subscriber who would like to share a profile with our readers?
Visit our participate page to find out how.



When Chryssi Tsoupanarias emailed me this week I received a lovely surprise. "I've been an UPPERCASE subscriber since the very first issue, I love it! It's a really beautiful publication," she writes. A graphic designer for the Canadian furniture retailer Structube, Chryssi has made good use of her back issues: as attractive stacks of magazines in the photos for their latest catalogue. "We've used issues of UPPERCASE in some of the images for our Summer campaign—these will be on our website, in our catalogue (online and also printed in-store) as well as in ads featured in home decor magazines (such as House & Home, Style at Home)."

I love how edited the photos are and happy to see the magazine is appreciated in this way. I can see myself at this white desk, below, with my laptop...


Structube has stores in Quebec and Ontario and will be making their way into Western Canada later this year with a store in Edmonton.

(The cover of issue #14 would go really nicely with that grey couch and green accent pillow, too!)

Subscriber Profile: Emeli Eva Reiart

Available in Emeli's Etsy shop. How are you creative in your daily life? I am creative in everything I do during the day. I was a high school art teacher in my old life but now I am a stay-at-home mom with two cool kids and a giant art studio. I knit, cook, quilt, build, repair, adopt, teach art, sew and create. When I was home with my first child ten years ago I started a silk screening business and now home again I love making wacky art pieces for my etsy shop. I am presently renovating my old barn into a studio to begin a small art school.

What are you most curious about? What is exactly going on in the minds of my children, how personality develops and how create acceptance and tolerance. No biggies.

What is your most prized possession? My photographs. Also, my daughter's big, grungy teddy bear that was mine when I was little. He comes to life at night to protect against monsters & boogymen. He is very important around here.

What is your favorite letter? M. I love the softness of "M" and I love the way it sounds. MMMMM. It is also the first letter of my daughter's name-Maggie. It feels good to write it too. There was a wonderful Sesame Street segment about Me and my "M" that I still hum daily.  
What is your favourite colour? Oatmeal. But I couldn't live without orangy red or industrial yellow.
What is your preferred creative tool? I love Sharpies. I was diagnosed with focal dystonia in my hands while in university to become a medical illustrator so that dream was squashed. While I tried to reconcile myself with the fact that I could no longer use my hands for fine motor skills such as detailed drawing or writing I found that I could still use large pens and large sketchbook to sketch and draw so the Sharpie became my tug boat and my work became large and messy and so much better! Also, the computer. I collect images and ideas and have a major addiction to my Pintrest account!
What is your favourite food? Baked Oysters. The best is with blue cheese and hot sauce baked till the the cheese bubbles. Or with fresh ginger and lime. Oh my gosh. So good.


Drippy babies

I hope you are as inspired as I am by all the different perspectives that UPPERCASE exposes us to. I love rubbing virtual shoulders with people and coming away with a new way of looking at things. When I read the information subscriber Dan Barry sent in about his first solo exhibition in Europe the phrase 'drippy babies' stood out. In my world, it often means a mess that I need to clean up, especially since my one-year-old has taken to drinking out of the dog's dish. Fortunately, I have a new frame of reference based on Dan's alluring work.

MondoPOP Gallery (Rome, Italy) presents:
A solo exhibition of artworks by Dan Barry

Opening Reception: Saturday, May 5th, 2012 from 7-10pm
On View: May 5th, 2012 – June 2nd, 2012

Combinatoria is comprised of several groupings of small mixed media works–ranging from anthropomorphic botanicals to drippy babies.


Dispatch from London: Venice

Actually, Venice Shone is the lovely name of this lovely person I had the pleasure of meeting at the Ray Stitch Meet and Greet in London a few weeks ago. You may recall a previous post about her work here.

In the photo above, Venice holds up the pretty print of a dress drawing that she gave me. Thank you, Venice! I'm going to hang it in my basement sewing room for some colour and inspiration.

I love drawings and paintings of things. Venice does these so very well:

Excerpts from some children's books illustrated by Venice Shone and some curious candies.

Subscriber Profile: Clare Corfield Carr


How are you creative in your daily life?
I draw in lines shapes and patterns mainly, with a bit of collage. I've always drawn. It's a relaxing process for me.

What are you most curious about?
How some illustrators become so successful and the different areas you can apply your skills into the industry. How couples interact with each other, and people's mannerisms.

What is your most prized possession?
My perfume-Oriens by Van Cleef & Arpels. A little bit of heaven.

What is your favourite letter of the alphabet and why?
Many satisfying words begin with F.

What is your favourite colour?
Midnight Blue.

What is your preferred creative tool?

What is your favourite food?
Chicken and leeks with a bit of thick gravy.  


Are you a subscriber who would like to share a profile with our readers?
Visit our participate page to find out how.


Dispatch from London: Ray Stitch (part 2)

I'm home in Calgary again and trying to take it easy since I really pushed myself on this trip and caught a cold at the end of it. Our home's internet, TV and phones were out for the past day so that was actually quite useful in contributing to some down time.

As promised, here are some of the fine folks who attended the Ray Stitch meet and greet.

From top to bottom: Ray Stitch is Rachel Hart's wonderful shop. That's her behind the counter in the teal sweater. / Excellent food for the event. / Lots of people came to say hi! I'm sorry, in my fog I have forgotten some names. Here's Janet Clare with her book, Freya & Fred. / Alex and Pui-Yee browse the latest issues. / That's Francisca Prieto (profiled in issue #12) and me. We look related, I think! / More details of the event and fine folks who supported it by braving traffic and weather.

Subscriber Profile: Caitlin Murray

Print avaliable in Caitlin's Etsy shop.

How are you creative in your daily life?
In my thoughts. In my blog. In my day job as a graphic designer & designer of kids clothes. In the crazy games I play with my my nephew. In the curious way I look at the things. Oh and I make some pretty creative meals for my cat Bloggie too.

What are you most curious about?
Artistic stuff and what Bloggie gets up to when I’m not around

What is your most prized possession?
It varies, right now it’s my mum’s watch…because she died last month

What is your favourite letter of the alphabet and why?
A. Because it’s the start, and things have to start somewhere.

What is your favourite colour?
Blue to wear. Red to look at.

What is your preferred creative tool?
Pencil. Pen. My computer

What is your favourite food?
Anything seafood...oh and saganaki rocks!


Are you a subscriber who would like to share a profile with our readers?
Visit our participate page to find out how.

Subscriber Profile: Cheryl Sorg

A personalized thumbprint portrait by Cheryl Sorg.

How are you creative in your daily life?  
Well, I am an artist, and I spend much of my free time (that time when the kiddos are at school, that is) in my studio, cutting apart bits of text and creating all manner of forms with the snippets.

What are you most curious about?
I am most curious about the workings of the brain.

What is your favourite letter of the alphabet and why?
That is a tough question! Hmmm....I'm not sure. But I can tell you my least favorite, as someone obsessed with playing Boggle on my iPhone, is Q! That Q always messes up my game! I have to confess that when a Q appears on the board, sometimes I just start a whole new game...lame, I know, but true...

What is your favourite colour?
Grey! I love its neutrality and its infinite variationsnot just from light to dark, but how it can be blue-ish, green-ish, purple-ish. My favorite is a grey with a teal cast to it.  

What is your preferred creative tool?
Texts and scissors. I love simple, low-tech materials.


See more in Cheryl's Etsy shop.

Are you a subscriber who would like to share a profile with our readers? Visit our participate page to find out how.


Call for submissions: What's in a Name?

What's in a name?

Illustrate, illuminate, design or otherwise render your first name in a way that expresses who you are. Submissions should be 6 inches wide at 300dpi and uploaded here. Please follow the directions and fill in the submission form at that link.

DEADLINE April 30.

Collecting social media

Weekend Reading

photo by Kristin TheissKristin has fit her vintage cameras into a suitcase. How very UPPERCASE. {You will find an owl t shirt design from Kristin's company KLTworks in issue #11.}

Andrea Jenkins' vintage camera collection

Would you like to start your own collection of vintage photo gear? Hula Seventy's Andrea Jenkins has an excellent article in the current issue #12. These three photos above show a portion of her amazing selection.

Love Letters

I had a cold and was feeling run down, so I hadn't been downtown to my studio for a few days. When I opened my mailbox, it was overflowing with an amazing assortment of envelopes and small parcels. I instantly felt better!

Inside this beautifully addressed envelope with Australian postage was an actual love letter from Lee of bluebirdmill.blogspot.com. In addition to a gushing letter, Lee included some ephemera, an old map, and a photo of herself. I'm blushing!

Laura Schwammann decorated her envelope which contained a Valentine (which made me think of issue 11 with its themes of linocut/sharp and labour-intensive art-making and owl motif).

Christina Crook, one of our writers (most recently she wrote the feature about Angela Ritchie Ace Camps and Creative Retreats in the current issue #12) sent one of her simple and lovely greeting cards. Each contains a vintage embroidered patch. (They're available on her Etsy shop here. Please visit her shop to see better quality images—it's a great concept for a unique card.)

Mister Edwards sent a fun bag of candy and stickers. (Check out this Crap Book - that's right, no S on scrap!)

Janae Easton of Platypusfile sent a soft owl paperweight/beanbag and some prints of her artwork. Finley is enjoying playing with the little owl, but our dog Percy is awfully tempted, too!

And that's not all that was in this incredible mailbox haul! There's a new book by Gemma Correll, an activity journal to document What I Wore Today, a postcard from Eight Hour Day, and a letter from Carolee Wheeler with some tiny stamps and beautiful handwriting that needs further investigation. A publication from Grow Books entitled Pushie, Jr. And a postcard from Stephanie Levy.

Really, you've all spoiled me. I don't remember a February 14th when I had better Valentines than these. Thank you!!!

i love YOU (and you love U)

Do you want to declare your love for UPPERCASE on your own blog or website? Now you can—and be rewarded for your enthusiasm—with our new referral program. Sign up is easy (you can even use your login info from Twitter, Facebook or Gmail), then grab the code for the graphic that best suits, put it on your site and that's it! There are also social media links and emails that you can use that will track your referrals. In the beta phase, you will earn $1 on every sale resulting from the link from your referring site. Once you reach $20 or more in commissions, they will be paid out automatically on a monthly basis.

What to share the love? SIGN UP HERE

Thank you! UPPERCASE readers are awesome.

(Here are some of the graphics to choose from, with more on the way after the testing period is over.)

introducing... peeps!

Hey, peeps!

Do you have something that you'd like to share with UPPERCASE magazine readers? Now you can publish it in honest-to-goodness ink on paper in our new "peeps" section! Think of a peep as a creative cross between a tweet, the community newspaper classifieds and a type specimen. Thanks to lithographic technology, these "paper tweets" leave a lasting impression. And with beautiful typography and design for each message (typeset by UPPERCASE designer Janine Vangool), these peeps transform a classified into something classy.

Have you just launched your portfolio site or redesigned your blog? Maybe UPPERCASE readers would love your shop with a unique offer just for them? Are you starting a special project that seeks collaboration? Do you have a special message for a fellow reader? A shoutout or just a friendly word of advice to share? Just want to see your name in print? That's what UPPERCASE peeps are for!

Easy and inexpensive, just fill in the form to submit your peep for the next issue (Issue #13 will be released for April-May-June). Deadline for peep submissions for issue #13 is February 28.

you've got mail

This is just a portion of the parcels and submissions I've received over the past few weeks. Thank you for sending in such interesting things. I'll do my best to reply, but it may take a while!