My hands are shaking and my heart is fluttering.

The idea of publishing a magazine has been floating in my mind for many years, but I didn't make the decision to proceed with it until this past Christmas. Deidre and I began working on it in earnest in January. I still can't quite believe that we accomplished so much in just three months. UPPERCASE magazine is really the culmination of a dozen years of freelance graphic design experience and four years of this creative entrepreneurial adventure called UPPERCASE. All the skills I have acquired over the years have been put to use... and then some! It has been an amazing learning experience and so creatively satisfying.

Blanca Gomez provided the perfect cover image. Blanca, I am so grateful for your generosity. Thank you.

Deidre, thank you for your inexhaustable flow of ideas. And for truly putting your heart into it.

Thank you, Glen, for writing some terrific articles and for listening to me talk about the minutiae of the magazine's progression.

The shipment of magazines is on its way from Winnipeg and we expect them tomorrow. Everything's on schedule for the launch celebration this Thursday from 5pm - 9pm. In the meantime, I'm transforming the gallery space for the treehouse show, adding new subscribers (thank you!), filling our biggest Eclectonote order ever, and sending out Jen11 orders. I'm going to leave this post up for a while, to bask in the moment... and I've got a lot more work to do!

See you on Thursday!

Type Tuesday: Papier Valise

Papier Valise carries exquisite paper treasures and finery. You must pay a visit to Janice's shop, blog and photostream.

Type Tuesday: labels

I found this book many years ago in a used bookshop in Montreal. I've always been fond of the classic red-bordered label and this book cover is particularly beautiful. The labels became an inspiration for a recurring design motif in the magazine.

Type Tuesday: contents

Here's the image from issue 1's table of contents (above), and some outtakes (below) in which I experimented with ink and rubber stamps on balloons.

Books for Jens

A snapshot of the Jen book piles I was making to send to all the artists.

Enormous Champion

I met Jordan Provost and Jason Wong at last year's National Stationery Show, a massive tradeshow featuring well over two thousand papergoods and gift exhibitors, held annually in New York City. Brooklyn-based greeting card company enormouschampion was making its debut, and although tucked away at the end of a very long row of exhibitors, their lovely booth and fresh designs were perhaps the most memorable in the entire show. We are very happy to feature the couple as UPPERCASE magazine's "Dynamic Duo" in issue 1 which includes an interview about their creative collaboration and a preview of upcoming products.

You can take a peek into Jordan and Jason's lovely Brooklyn apartment today on Design*Sponge.

A trip of the imagination

{ 12. }

Rockets of creativity

Adventurous spirits...

This amazing list has grown. Thank you to all the fabulous people who have subscribed over the past few days. I just heard from the printer in Winnipeg and the magazine is just finishing up in the bindery and should be on a truck this afternoon. All systems are go — we're on track for the launch this Thursday!

{ This image is a matchbox label depicting Belka and Strelka, the Soviet astrodogs, via Dan Mogford and his collection of labels. The dogs were sent into space in 1960, accompanied by a rabbit, dozens of mice, a couple of rats as well as an assortment of plants and fungi. They were the first earthlings to be sent into orbit and return alive. }

Happy Monday

It's going to be a BUSY week! The stitch show comes down today and preparation for the Treehouse show begins, the Jen11 book is shipping, there's a huge Eclectonote order to fulfill... not to mention a First Thursday and the release of issue one of UPPERCASE's magazine! {this image is from my Tumblr Scrapbook, via Glen Mullaly's photostream}

The Jen11 book is here!

Jen11 from UPPERCASE gallery on Vimeo.

Order the Jen11 book in our shop (or receive it as part of our book and magazine subscription)
For more information about the show, visit the Jen11 website. We'll start shipping the book next week!

Swedish Vampires

A coming-of-age vampire love story set in a snowy Stockholm suburb circa 1982, 'Let The Right One In' (directed by Tomas Alfredson, 2008) is one of the finest contemporary films I've seen in ages. If you haven't seen it already, I envy you the experience. There is plenty of bloodsucking, but the director stays tuned to the more subtle and brutal forms of emotional violence, establishing compelling characters and intricate relationships.

The Swedish winter landscapes are exquisite and chilling; almost makes me appreciate our endless Canadian winter. Click here to watch a clip.

Godspeed, Great Lake Swimmers!

I am digging the new 'Pulling on a line' video. Hmm. How to describe it? Tom Sawyer meets David Lynch in wooded parlor light amidst pink plumes of smoke and a motley crew of stage animals: a blue-eyed castaway crooner, horned child creatures, and an enigmatic silver-haired tree man. Weirdly wonderful imagery that stays true to the earnest and enchanting vibe of the Great Lake Swimmers.

*Just a friendly reminder that the band will be performing songs from their gorgeous new album Lost Channels tomorrow night (Thursday March 26, 8pm) at Calgary's Grace Presbyterian Church. There are still a few tickets remaining for this all-ages show, and if you are looking for an extraordinary acoustic experience to lift you out of this cold winter spell you cannot do finer that the GLS. See the following link for more ticket information.

And watch for our special tribute feature on the swimmers in the debut issue of UPPERCASE magazine. Fans of the band are also invited to follow the tour on Tony Dekker's twitter site.

We are wishing them a safe passage tonight across the snowy prairies. Godspeed swimmers, but easy on the pedal!

A growing list of wonder and amazement...

Announcing the Suitcase Series: Camilla Engman

The Suitcase Series Volume 1:
Camilla Engman

Artist Camilla Engman may live in Gothenburg, Sweden, but her appeal is international. A professional illustrator and exhibiting artist, her images are whimsical, poignant, humourous and insightful. With her keen eye for finding the extraordinary in the everyday, Camilla documents her inspirations and artwork on her popular blog. Nearly 2000 fans visit her site on a daily basis (with three quarters being from North America) to get a glimpse into Camilla’s creative life.

UPPERCASE is proud to have been the first gallery outside of Sweden to feature her work, in our 2005 exhibition “Best in Show”. We are excited to be collaborating on a book of Camilla’s art and life, the first volume in our “Suitcase Series”, to be released in the fall of 2009. I am looking forward to travelling to Sweden next month and meeting Camilla (and her cute dog, Morran) at long last.

The Suitcase Series presents in glorious detail the lives of select artists and designers. The books are image-based, full of artwork, sketchbook pages, beautiful photographs and artifacts from where the artists live and work. Interviews with the artist are included in both their native language and English. The books’ size will be small and intimate, like a diary/sketchbook and each book in the series would have a special treasure added: perhaps a small limited-edition art print, a vellum envelope filled with foreign paper scraps for collage, fabric swatches, etc. The book becomes a precious souvenir of a creative journey shared between the reader and the artist.

For our book and magazine subscribers, you will be receiving the Jen11 and Camilla books as part of your subscription. If you'd like to preorder Camilla's book by itself, click here. All pre-orders will include a unique keepsake of the project.

{ PHOTO: Elisabeth Dunker }


Type Tuesday: Xs and Os

Follow my tumblr for random images like this.

Shop back online

The shop should be working again - you might have to clear your browser cache for it to load. Thanks for your patience!

Type Tuesday: Flickr's fantastic

I could get lost in the vintage goodness you can find on Flickr. Here are some images from Pantufla's sets.

Temporary problem with online shop

Some of you may be trying to access the online shop (as I am). The host, Shopify, is having some difficulties that they promise will be fixed asap.