Not your typical holiday card

 
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The Death Row Support Project connects someone on death row with a non-incarcerated person to write letters to each other. It’s a chance to offer a friendship to someone very removed from society while providing space to get to know this person and “dispel some of the misconceptions and fears about prisons and the people locked away inside of them” (DRSP website). Although I am not currently writing an inmate, DRSP invited folks this past holiday season to send holiday cards to those on death row. I volunteered to send cards to 11 men.

This became a little practice in pen and ink, collaging and color theory - I created a unique card for each person, exploring different patterned and textured paper and found joy in various color combinations. I’m hoping these simple, hand-crafted designs brought a little more brightness to someone who might lack the warmth and connection I take for granted during the holiday season.

A little plug for DRSP - If you’re interested in participating but cannot take the time to write someone, DRSP is always accepting donations, especially of stamps!

Happy 2019! Here’s to more connecting and bridging gaps in the new year.

Old school dodging

 
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This past holiday season I came back from a trip to Eastern Europe with a full roll of black and white film. With that I had finally convinced my dad to show me how to develop and print film like he did in the basement at our old house, in the bathroom he had converted into a dark room. This time he set up the makeshift darkroom in a walk-in closet at my parents’ house, complete with a custom-built shelf, dark room lighting and a little heater to make sure the chemicals stay at the right temperature.

The results? I learned the "dodging" and "burning" skills that came long before it was something I learned in my intro to Photoshop class, as well as how to lighten and darken, f-stop, paper quality, and more. It’s neat to step away from the computer and be part of the process. Here's a few of the printed photos!