Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Camel and Monarch...

"...intermittent; familiar; connections in smoking words..."

This was my submission to a "six word novel" challenge in Ficly. Although I'm no stranger to creative writing, this type of exercise was certainly nothing short of challenging. This type of work, assuming you're able to produce something you feel is solid, always generates a real sense of accomplishment despite the handful of words that constitute the achievement.

an update on my journal...

For those of you familiar with my ongoing mission to find a functional journal, I am happy to report that the latest book is working out as well as I'd hoped! For those of you just joining this article-based journey, here's a little background information to get you caught up.

I'm using my journal more than I did before and I'm finding that it's very comfortable to hold and carry. I take the journal on wine tastings, to coffee shops, and even use it while I read (to record words for future dictionary use). And if folding things isn't an issue, there's room in the back of the journal to tuck away interesting items I come across (such as wine tasting sheets). That's a nice feature to have since there's no need to work through drawings, writing, or photography when you know you can take certain items with you. I am rediscovering my interest in journals because I can once again enjoy the experience. I'll try to post some images of additional pages/spreads within the next couple of weeks.

Monday, June 29, 2009

the aroma of publication

After months of floating between ideas for various concepts for publications, I've committed to an idea for my first book. The book will be self-published through Blurb and sold independently through local coffee shops, word-of-mouth, and Etsy. The book will be about???.......sorry, not giving away everything!

I will say this...out of all my ideas for potential zines and books, this particular idea is one of my favorite. The concept creates an interesting connection between imagery and words while having a purely creative focus. Having said that, it isn't a book of fine art; about a third to half of the total content will be illustration, with writing filling up the remaining "space". I'm at the point where I'm creating content, which is a place I thought I'd never see any time soon. As I approach the editing/design phase, I'll post sneak preview photos of sample spreads.

Until then, check Twitter for updates on progress!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

"I'm sure you can imagine..."

"...I'm a work in progress."

(for the background story behind these articles, click here)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

journal #?

But it looks as if this one will stick around!

For those of you who follow my blog, you know that my history with journals is "interesting" to say the least (read more here). Well, my latest journal, the one I thought would certainly fit all my requirements...well, it's no longer in service.

The mental disconnect isn't due to the materials but rather the size and weight. My last journal was fun to use but I seldom brought it with me; when it did accompany me, I never felt comfortable carrying just the journal. Long story short, I returned to a previous purchase that is working better the second time around.

The new journal is leather, around 4"x6", with bundles of pages sown to the spine. It has a traditional journal appearance and is small enough to tuck inside a pocket or, at the very least, carry with ease. Two of my favorite aspects of this journal: a couple of pages partially ripped away from the binding thread during use and it came with a small piece of wax-like paper that I use as a page marker...both of these elements give my journal a bit of a fragile feel to it, which I love.

Here are some images. The scans didn't turn out well but I think the image quality suits the journal's wear and use.


[inside cover, first page]

[sample spread of type experiment]

I hope this journal sticks around for the long haul that is my journey into art and creativity. In as serious a tone as I can muster, I have to say that I'm running out of ideas for portable journals; luckily, I really like this one and it seems to be a good fit. In light of that, I hope my blog won't see another article such as this...because we'll all know what that means!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

"I'm sure you can imagine..."

I don’t remember where I found this picture (I didn’t shoot the photograph) but I’m glad I kept it because it’s become an interesting aspect of my journal.

What I do is visit this journal page at random moments and write a phrase (typically one sentence) that describes what could be bouncing around in the elephant’s mind due to the colorful make-over. The sentence could be the elephant’s literal opinion about the situation or it could describe how the elephant became a canvas. When I glued the photo into my journal, I didn’t have this creative excercise in mind but like most creative activities, it turned into something on its own.

As you might guess, this series of blog posts is about those phrases, published. Each phrase will be displayed underneath the photo, in bold and using a serif typeface.

“…it was either this or a hat.”

So when you see this photograph, or the title “I’m sure you can imagine…”, brace yourself for insight into one elephant’s mind!

{photograph used from a magazine, please assign all necessary copyrights to the respective artist}

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

abstractLatte is GOOD

As a serious writer, I love crafting a bit of typographic goodness in response to my environment (don't necessarily think green, although I do think the green movement is kick ass). Over at GOOD Magazine's online community I contribute comments and articles, sometimes quick prose and other times a more involved ideas-to-words effort.

url: http://www.good.is/community/JoeBlend

For those of you who aren't familiar with GOOD Magazine, the publication is focused on great ideas and powerful thinking in a world that needs those things; their target audience...people that give a damn (their words, not mine). As a gesture of good will, and my way of helping you acheive a more well-rounded feel for their online content, I recommend one writer who has an entertaining and insightful way of communicating thoughts about the world and it's intricacies (http://www.good.is/series/wordliness). I've followed his blog for a while and it's worth the time.

Check out my words, read through the whole publication, or start your own profile in order to contribute your perspective. Regardless of your intentions, decide what's important to you, GOODmark it, or discuss it. Give a damn.