Feeling Bookish...

I am so impressed! We have received about 60 submissions for the latest open call in which we ask our readers to interpret themselves as a book cover. This was a challenging concept, but you took me up on it and did an amazing job. The majority of them will be published in the forthcoming issue 7 of UPPERCASE magazine (alas, a few people forgot to follow our size requests or otherwise have unpublishable files—please note that when creating work that might be printed, it is important to build the file to the proper specifications: web resolution doesn't work for print. Print = 300dpi).

We invited some very talented professional book designers to participate as well, and I am thrilled with their work. I will be printing out the best of everyone's submissions for an impromptu exhibition in the gallery for the month of September, so please join us this First Thursday for the show!

Vancouver-based artist Andrea Armstrong did a great cover illustration and even made a mockup:

Andrea writes:

I am a picture book. Not too wordy; likes to hang out with kids; colourful but simple. The thing about a picture book is you can read the words quickly, but to get to know the story well, you have to keep coming back to it to spend time with its images.

I am a picture book about a girl and her chickens. The girl is an introvert; she would rather hang out with chickens than real people most of the time. She’s creative – now don’t laugh, but she invents songs to sing to them, and even wrote a poem about them once. She has a favorite chicken, whose name is, in fact, Favorite. And she’s a little bit odd (hello, she’s best friends with chickens and writes poetry for them.)

I am an autobiographical picture book about a girl and her chickens. True story.

There's a nice mix of illustrations, design and typography in the submissions. Great job, everyone!

By the way, check out Andrea's blog for some great depictions of a drawn version of herself interacting in the real world. Love it!

Type Tuesday: Curious and... crazy!

This image was posted on design*sponge so you've likely already seen it making the rounds, but these pencil tip sculptures by Dalton Ghetti are crazy amazing.

Do you know of other artists, designers and craftspeople who work in miniature? Let us know by leaving suggestions and links in the comments—we are compiling ideas for a future issue.

Type Tuesday: "Do Lectures"

The Do Lectures is a non-profit organisation based in West Wales in the UK. The lectures are all about getting a handful of speakers together in one place, in the hope that they may inspire you to go Do something. To give you the tools and the desire to change the things you care about. To raise funds, Anthony Burrill has designed a poster printed using woodblock by Adams of Rye on A1, 100% recycled, colorset paper.

"Once a year we provide a stage, in a tent in a field, down here in a magical part of West Wales, for inspirational people from all over the world to share their ideas, to challenge convention, to rewrite business models, to change entire industries, to invent better ways of doing things for a world with limited resources. These inspirational talks are then filmed and distributed online free to the world. That's what we Do."

Time to renew!

My dear readers,

Now that we have surpassed our first year, one of the regular tasks of running the magazine is keeping up with subscription renewals. It is really vital that the magazine keeps its subscriber base strong; the hard costs of printing, distribution and mailing are supported by our amazing subscribers. We also pay our regular contributors, illustrators and photographers honorariums for their submissions. Not to mention rent, promotions and advertising costs! It all adds up to be quite an expensive production.

I'm confident that you will see the value in each quarterly issue; everyone involved really provides their very best work each and every time. The funny thing about creating such a high quality production is that sometimes people assume that it is funded and created by some lavish publishing empire. In fact, I am the only full time person involved: as publisher, editor, art director/designer, marketer, distributor and more, I am fully dedicated to making the magazine a sustainable publication.

Vital members of the team are editor-at-large Deidre Martin and subscription/shop manager Jenny Tzanakos. My husband Glen is also taking on more roles as the magazine grows. I am so grateful for all their hard work.

I have just sent off renewal invoices to those whose subscription ended with issue 6. In an attempt to find a more effective and streamlined method of renewal, I have sent these notices as Paypal invoices. In the past, I have sent off reminder emails, but the response rate hasn't always been great since folks forget to go to the online shop or lose the email in their full inboxes. With an invoice, you just have to click and respond to the one message. The other benefit is that we pay less in transaction fees which means that more of the subscription money goes to paying the print bill!

So I hope you don't mind the impersonality of the Paypal renewal method, but please know that I personally see all the renewals and plan on thanking each of you individually for your continued support.

If your subscription has lapsed, you can always renew and catch up with back issues, too!

If you've purchased a single copy or have been curious about the magazine, we invite you to join our family of subscribers.

We love our subscribers and readers and I hope you can see that in every magazine we make. Speaking of which, lucky issue 7 is in the design phase and will be going to print in September. I'll keep you posted of its progress; it's going to be a hearty fall issue! I'm really excited about our cover illustrator, but I'll keep you in suspense a while longer...

again, thank you.


Emily and Josh's home

We all love to peek inside other people's homes, don't we? Thanks to Apartment Therapy, we can tour the lovely home of Emily (Orange Beautiful, UPPERCASE stockist) and Josh (Sidedown Audio). Look for a great article about Specimen Products by Josh in issue 7.

Pattern print

I like the quilt-effect of this design by Joe Kievitt available on 20x200.


Studio envy: Jane Foster

I'd love to sew in this bright white space! I love how the fabric colours pop against the whiteness. This is the creative space of UK-based illustrator entrepreneur Jane Foster who excels at retro and Scandinavian-inspired motifs as well as making things with vintage fabrics.


Featured Stockist: Center Diamond Fabrics

I purchased some beautiful fabrics while staying in Cannon Beach, Oregon. Center Diamond Fabrics was an unexpected find—such a luscious selection of fabrics! I will have to photograph my stash and show you all. I was so taken with the shop that I returned a second time to drop off a copy of UPPERCASE magazine. It was mutual admiration and the lovely shop owner Julie bought a selection of the current and back issues right then and there to sell in her shop! So nice.

They have just launched a web store, so you can peruse a selection of their fabrics and notions.

Many potatoes!

Congratulations to Stu Eli + Janet Morales of Three Potato Four (profiled in issue 4, Dynamic Duo) on their new store in Philadelphia! The grand opening is Saturday, August 28th from 12-8pm if you are lucky enough to be in their neighbourhood. (376 Shurs Lane, Building A)


Call for submissions, deadline extension

Feeling bookish?

If you were a book, what genre of book would you be? Fiction or non fiction? Are you a classic? An adventure tale, western or mystery? Perhaps you're a romance, chick lit or bodice-ripper? For our fall issue, we're asking readers to design a book cover—but not just any cover. How would you represent yourself through words and images, design and typography? Give your book a title, credit yourself as author and the rest is up to you!

DEADLINE EXTENSION: Submissions are due by August 30.
The best will be published in the fall issue of UPPERCASE magazine.

6" x 9" 300dpi (design of the book spine and back cover is optional)
Please upload them here.

Sneak Peek: The Elegant Cockroach

The Elegant Cockroach: Love, Longing & Six Legs

Literature, fine wine and a Spanish guitar are elegant pastimes. But in the big city, passing the time simply isn't enough. The Elegant Cockroach longs for more…

Written by Deidre Anne Martin and illustrated by Stefanie Augustine, The Elegant Cockroach is a charming storybook for whimsical grown-ups and sophisticated children.

This book is a labour of love for all involved. Deidre has poured her heart into the story and has patiently waited to find the right collaborators to see it published. Deidre and I are both long-time fans of Stefanie Augustine (her work has appeared in the magazine and she has participated in past gallery exhibitions). Stefanie did a great job of creating the character design of The Elegant Cockroach and the visual representation of his life and surroundings. It was a pleasure to lend my typographic and design skills to the project and another happy moment for UPPERCASE publishing. We look forward to the launch and art exhibition in UPPERCASE gallery, dates to be announced.

We await delivery date confirmation for the book, but it will be shipping this fall. As you can see from the printer proofs shown here, we are at the final stage! 32 pages, full colour, black cloth hardcover with copper foil with full colour dustjacket. Available for preorder in the shop!

Type Tuesday: Textile Trademarks

We're back from the big road trip! Doesn't it always feel like you need a vacation when you return from a holiday?

I have lots of discoveries to share with you from the past three weeks, some treasures purchased at Renegade, nice shops perused along the way, new stockists and new ideas. But first, I'm going over the printer's proof of our upcoming book: The Elegant Cockroach by our very own Deidre Martin, illustrated by Stefanie Augustine. Stay tuned for a sneak peek of this lovely book later today.

And now on to today's Type Tuesday: Adrian Wilson has an amazing collection of typographic objects and memorabilia from the textile trade. In issue 5, he shared some insight and images from this relatively undocumented niche of graphic design. He has just launched a blog and will be speaking at TypeCon LA this weekend. {Are any of you attending TypeCon? Send us pictures and commentary from the conference and we'll post them for next week's Type Tuesday.}

This image from Conde Nast Traveler magazine

Hello, Portland!

Glen and I will be at Land today (Friday) from 5 to 7pm. We'd love to meet all our Portland friends face-to-face at long last. We hope you will join us for this little meet and greet event. (Plus see a fine exhibition of work by regular UPPERCASE contributor, Frank Chimero!)

I also have a few limited-edition notebooks handmade with makeready from issue 6, free while supplies last. We also have Eclectonotes and some back issues (issues 3 and 5) with us. Sorry, issues 1 and 2 are completely sold out — we even have to ask our own relatives for extra archival copies! There are still copies of issue 4 available, but we sold out of those on this trip and so that issue is available online.


At the beach

Here are some beach scenes from the past few days. Now we're enjoying time at Cannon Beach, Oregon. See more photos here. (I love the ShakeitPhoto app for iPhone!)

Levi's Workshop

I posted about Levi's Workshop before leaving for San Francisco and the space lived up to my expectations: such a nice open workspace, lots of light and cool things to inspire! The Levi's branding was throughout, but subtle and sophisticated. I wish I could have spent the day there!

So lovely

Thank you, Derek and Lauren, for your hospitality. It was very enjoyable to spend time with you in your shoppe. So happy to have met Victoria in person, too!

The Forage bow tie collection by Something's Hiding in Here is superb.

Thanks to all who came by to say hi!

UPPERCASE at The Curiosity Shoppe today!

At long last, I will get to set foot in The Curiosity Shoppe! Join us for an UPPERCASE meet and greet this afternoon from 5-8pm! The Curiosity Shoppe, 855 Valencia Street, San Francisco, California.

***Free UPPERCASE notebooks made from issue 6 printing make-ready while supplies last!


Renegade Favourites

There are really too many! The quality of exhibitors was really high and overall well-curated at Renegade. I took some video of some highlights, but for now I'll post some pics of favourite booths and things I saw.

Margaret of Paper Pastries had a tasty pink and white display theme.


Can you spot Glen and Finley?

What an incredible fair! Too exhausted for much else, but to say THANK YOU to all the lovely people: our hero Danny, our new subscribers, our customers, and our contributors past. present and future. Thanks Glen, Deidre and Jenny. And Finley, the best baby ever! More photos here.