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Collect/ive MARCH 2011 THE HALF ISSUE ISSUE ONE | VOLUME ONE


What’s inside

7 11

Lauren Parker “East of Wonderland

Mike Bailey Gates “Imaginarium”

26

Sarah Smiley “Winters Last Queen”

34

Brooke Shaden An Interview


Dear readers,

It is often said that art is the perfect combination of the need to be perfect mixed with fleeting, manic thoughts. My brain is often like that, ideas hit me like bullets through glass and blend together in millions of colors. This magazine are those very thoughts of others streamlined into a magazine. A clear purpose yet everything is different, everything is beautiful.

Enjoy, creator/head editor


Meet the staff Sarah Haege

Lauren Withrow

Moriah Freed


Collect/ive magazine is looking for creative individuals to write and create art for the magazine! We are accepting submissions so if you have an idea for an article or a photo story email us at coll ectivema gazine @ g m a i l . c o m

An open call


Identity


East of Nowhere Short story by Lauren Parker

Oh what a terrible thing it would be to get your senses all tangled into a tightly wound ball. Hearing what you read, seeing what you smell, feeling what you see, what a beautifully terrible thing that would be. Out of all the beautiful things that were and all the terrible things to be, why that could quite possibly be the most beautiful and the most terrible thing of all. The Moon has aspirations, didn’t you know? We all spill our secrets east of Wonderland and forget our dreams in the middle of the day. As the world spins on we become shells of ourselves, mixing in with the palettes of imported thoughts and exported notions. Tariffs are never to our favor. And why should they be? In the world today every dream is expensive, every possibility comes with a cost, every idea appears with a price tag written in blood. If it’s not your own blood, it’s the sacrifice of the son. Where is the uniqueness if there is nothing new under the sun? Our identity—yours and mine—are the same. We are the same. All our dreams and realities and choices—they are all the same. All terribly and beautifully the same. Identity is found in the senses, it is found in the smell of our dreams, the touch of our thoughts, the sound of our fears and hopes. Who we are and ever hope to be is wrapped up in the single reason for life on the earth. It’s wrapped up and tied with a price tag of blood. Only with forgiveness is there remission. What are the Moon’s aspirations, you ask? Quite simply, her goal is to glorify. That is her purpose: to radiate and to love and to shout for joy. Her purpose is to expand the senses beyond her own soul and to penetrate a dying world. Let us gather and soak in the liquid crystalline diamonds that surround us every day. Let us recall the beginnings of the world and the price our souls are worth. Let us never forget our hopes and dreams and the very purpose that builds the tapestry of our identity. And then, oh then, what a terrible and beautiful thing we will be.


a poem + by Amelia +


I’ve written a letter and left It in my unmade bed. For the sheets were smiling As you lay there this morning, Rolling in delight at your coveted presence, A rock in the feral white waves You held me and tamed them.

+

Ringing was my heart but so was Your phone again Then the sheets were scowling Indignant and bitter at you standing Screaming fiercely at your sudden departure, Crumbled rocks and broken lighthouses You deserted me and released them.

+

So The And

the

letter

+

was

written

rope removed from the garden now I’m there above our unmade

shed bed.


The Young Artist Story by Sarah Riedl

Photography is rapidly becoming a very popular form of expression for teenagers and young adults. But the young do not only limit themselves to this way of expression, we also try ourselves in graphic design, fine art, writing and many other forms other forms of art. One may ask why creating art has become so vital for this group of 14-25 year-olds. Well, as we all know, in this age we develop our personalities and go on a journey to find our identities. Going through a lot of different phases is hard and we need something to handle it. When talking to friends or parents isn’t enough, art is always an outlet. “It’s almost as though I am catching up with an old friend who I had once battled with”, eighteen-year-old Lexi Mire says about her writing. Most of the young creators nowadays start experimenting with art at a very young age and, rather than focusing on the technical aspects of their creations, they use them to convey their emotions and feelings. Consequently, this leads to a very close connection between the teens’ art and their personal development. Young artist Rebecca, 21, says: “When I wasn’t able to explain myself through words I would just take my camera or my pencil and let my hands do the rest of the work.” For her, as many others, the age when you begin to become an adult but still want to hold on to the feeling of being young, was a troubled time. When you’re growing up, you get confused and sometimes you feel as if everything is just a big mess. Creating helps us young people to calm down, focus and clear our heads. Additionally, art can serve as a sort of psychological analysis of oneself: When you create something and then go back to look at it months later, it is quite apparent to yourself how you’ve changed since that moment when you scribbled down these words or put the colours on this canvas. In a way, art almost forces us to reflect upon ourselves – it confronts us with our emotions, shows us how we once wanted to be, thus making us realise how we really turned out. Through creating art, we divide ourselves into a million little pieces that then are assembled again, and during that process we change. We show our secrets to the world, we are brave and we become what we are supposed to be. The young artists of the 21st century do not simply create a piece of art – they take pieces of their identities and visualise them. I think it is safe to say there is no better way to develop your identity than through art.


Lexi

Mire

Rebecca Bossi


vogue


“thy hair

is my kingdom A Fashion story by Moriah Freed


Thrifting

+Style Article written by Moriah Freed

Unless you happen to have wads of cash lying around or treat yourself to a regular five-finger discount (which I strongly discourage) your photos most likely do not feature the latest designer clothing. While asking the model to bring clothes or even using your own can work, I find that thrift shopping for outfits is a very entertaining and inexpensive option. First off you should start by researching a few local thrift stores. Some of my favorites include Value Village and Last Chance, but I tend to avoid larger ones such as Goodwill and Salvation Army because the clothes tend to be pricier and there is more of a ‘sorting process’ where a lot of interesting props and clothes don’t make it to the stores. When I’m shopping specifically for a shoot it is also very helpful to arrive at the store with some kind of idea of what you are looking for; it doesn’t need to be incredibly detailed, but something along the lines of ‘pink skirt’ works. I am someone who can spend hours in thrift stores, and when I have a goal of some sort it helps me get in and out without being overwhelmed by all of the thrifty goodness. One hassle of thrifting clothes is that in many cases you may find the perfect article of clothing in the wrong size, shape and even color. There are a few ways to fix this. Of course it helps if you find clothing that you may wear after the shoot, but if not the low price is a definite plus; if you need to, cut something shorter or even dye it a completely new color. Customize it in anyway you see fit, and if you mess it up it isn’t the end of the world. If you aren’t the craftiest person, oversized clothing can often be fixed by belting it at the waist, or you could go for more of a layered, oversized style instead. Other options can including rolling hems, tucking in extra fabric, or for special cases I always carry a few extra clips to my shoots to fix clothing if need be. Anything that makes that makes the fit better or better suits the look you’re going for is fair game. Happy thrifting!


Although the beige dress looked like a maxi dress in person, once on the model is became awkwardly short. We tried to draw attention away from the length using dramatic heels.

The pink skirt used in the rapunzelesque shoot was something that my sister ran out and got for me while I was preparing props. It is a size 2X and not the most pleasant item, but when tied at the waist it works all right.

The incredibly baggy floral vest was belted and the floral skirt rolled at the hem. The cardigan in the photo was thrifted as well, everything totaling under $10.


Winters Last Queen a fashion story by Sarah Smiley


exposure


Risi n g star An interview with Alex Stoddard Interivew conducted by Lauren Withrow

First, will you tell us the story behind your beginning as a photographer? I don’t know that there’s any ‘story’ to it, really. I’ve been taking photos for about a year now, and it was something that I started on a whim. Back in the days when MySpace was still socially relevant, I got into taking a bunch of those awful, over-contrasted profile pictures, and my friends, only God knows why, told me that they were good, and I believed it, so I just started taking photos of me in different situations and testing out different lighting and whatnot. It wasn’t until discovering flickr and Rosie Hardy’s work that I became aware of concepts. I spent all my savings on my first (and current) DSLR, and I guess that’s where I am now. What is your reason behind being a photographer? I’ve always liked to tell stories and invent these surreal situations. I would draw a lot as a kid (until I realized that I was terrible) and took to writing instead. I would write so many stories and pump all my creativity into them, but as I progressed, I found it more difficult to finish them, because I wanted every detail to be perfect -- every comma in place, every word deliberate. It got to the point where I would open the thesaurus for every other word, searching for a more elevated synonym, something that fit the tone and would make me sound.. well.. smarter. (I don’t regret it, though.. Helped me out a lot on the SAT.) So from writing, I found photography, and I think I like it best. I’ve realized, too, that it’s one of the most accessible forms of creativity today. So few people take the time to sit down and read anymore, and paintings aren’t appreciated by as many as they once were. Pictures are everywhere you look. Everywhere. We are exposed to so many photos nowadays, and a greater number of people are likely to see your photo of a take on Little Red Riding Hood than read your interpretation of the tale on your blog. Ma jority of your pictures are self portraits and are very centered on a specific theme/story line; do these stories project areas of your life or are they completely fictional?

I’d say for the most part they are fictional. I’ve never chased after a loved one’s car or eaten bugs from a fly zapper as I’ve depicted in some of my recent photos. My life is completely boring, even in the typical whiny teenager sense. I think what I show are pieces of what I would like my life to be like - little snippets that might make it a little more exciting or surreal. I’m a firm believer in the idea that originality is so rare these days. Everyone’s art is a combination of everything they’ve ever seen or felt that has made an impact on them. We all have noticed how you use clothing or very little clothing to help set the mood or to help complete the story, so my question is what is your view on nudity in all forms of photography? (including fine art, fashion, etc) So glad you’ve noticed! I try to reserve nudity to photos that strictly call for it in order to complete the idea. I’m not talking about going shirtless or in my boxers or whatever - I do that more sparingly, sometimes because I want the photos to appear timeless or because I have no other clothes that will work for it. Nudity, though, I try only to include in the very, very natural shots, the ones where I attempt to portray a really intimate relationship between man and nature... almost a “oneness”. In regard to its use in photography, I think it can either make a photo wonderful or cross the line into inappropriateness and trashiness. Going naked for the sake of going naked is stupid. I believe the times where it is most effective are the ones in which the person’s recognizable facial features are hidden.. If you want to make it about the body, then make it about the body. Make it about the naturalness. In fashion, there are some times where it is acceptable for the model to expose him/herself, like when it compliments the article of clothing. Sometimes nudity is used in fashion simply to make a statement, to bring an edginess, and that’s kind of stupid and kind of smart. It’s stupid that nudity is what catches the public’s attention, but in some cases, it’s smart, because attention creates interest and interest creates sales. Sex sells I would like to see that change, though. I’d like to see the interest come from some other place. It cheapens the photographs that use nudity to make an actual valid statement.


“Nature of The Womb” This is probably my photo that represents the most intimate relationship between man and his natural surroundings. It is a ‘prequel’ to “Nature of Man”. In “Nature of the womb”, I wanted to portray myself as a fetus within the earth, waiting, growing, before it bursts from the earth and is ‘born’ in the subsequent shot. Both were taken in the same spot. There’s this big tunnel-like hole that leads from a dry creek bed through the side of the wall and up out of the ground above. I shed my clothes and crawled inside, making sure to smear myself with mud along the way, as to make the shot appear more convincing. In post-processing, I combined nine or so images together into a square. (I had panned the camera left, right, up, down several times and taken a bunch of shots so as to expand the frame.) Afterward, there was a bit of color correction and curves so as to make myself stand out more against the background. (Below)

“The Book Burning” Lastly, this is one of my older photos, but I still love it more than most. My mom, being the woodswoman that she is, built this great fire for me, and, with the help of my little brother, threw handfuls of ripped-out book pages into the air around me while I snapped away. The theme is obviously about censorship and society’s willingness to allow others to control what they read and are exposed to. (Above)

“A Century Without Rain.”

While it is a pretty simple photo, this is my favorite one I’ve ever taken. The concept was pretty spur-of-themoment as I glimpsed the black umbrella just sitting there in my garage. As the title implies, I wanted to show a boy who has brought out his umbrella for the first time in one-hundred years, as a drought it ending, and in such a time, it has accumulated enormous amounts of the cobwebs from lack of use. I threaded a bunch of fake spiderwebbing left over from Halloween through the spokes of the umbrella, and my cats made it way more difficult than it needed to be, as they kept jumping into it all and tearing it to shreds. When I went to edit the photo, I just adjusted the lighting and used the background from a previous rain photo so as to emphasize the arrival of rain. (To the right)


an interview with

Brooke Shaden by sarah haege


job (which I hated) and, in a fairly blind way, took the leap into doing photography full time. It was not easy as all. I went into the fine art world thinking it wouldn’t be as hard as people said because I had an exhibition lined up. I had fairtale dreams of selling a lot of prints and making money, when the reality was that I made no money at all and, in fact, lost quite a bit. Since then I have found my bearings and I have never regretted my decision. I can’t imagine doing anything else!

You seem to have fixations of sorts on certain concepts/ideas. What draws you too these concepts and what do you hope to achieve in examining them?

Could you tell us a little about yourself and what you do? Sure! When I think about who I am it is impossible to separate photography from that description, even though it has only been a real part of my life for the last two years. Everything that I do revolves around photography from what time I wake up in the morning to how I schedule my day so that I can shoot at the perfect time with the perfect light. In a large part, I am my photography. Outside of photography I spend most of my time with my husband and cats and on the phone with my family back in Pennsylvania. I am a fine art photographer, and that is how I make my living. When I started out everyone said it would be impossible to solely do fine art, and for a while it seemed that way, but I’ve managed to stay away from the types of photography that I do not have a passion for. I exhibit in galleries (I am currently represented in Laguna Beach and Amsterdam) and I teach workshops. I have a big passion for both of these things and hope that I can branch out and do more.

When did you first start experimenting in photography and when did it become a serious full time job? I picked up my camera in some sort of a serious way in December 2008. A friend of mine called me up and told me to hop on Flickr.com to look at how creative some of the images were. We both loved what we saw, and she asked me if I would start doing photography with her. We lived in different states, so we decided to do self-portraiture. She lasted about a week in our photography project, but I could tell I was hooked for life. It was the first time that I felt I had a true passion and connection with something without having any reservations. I began doing photography full time about a year after I started taking pictures. In February 2010 I quite my full time

I absolutely do go back often to certain concepts. Even when I think I’ve put something to rest I find myself, even a year later, harping on a similar concept but wanting to put a new twist on it. I have a deep love for dark fairy tales, especially images that are reminiscent of a fairy tale. I love looking into death and using such a finite thing to reflect on life. I also find myself bordering my aesthetic on surrealism and creating scenes that in some way lose touch with reality. There is something that I fine incredibly beautiful about death and the way that death forces us to examine life. I love thinking about the fragility of life. I am also constantly drawn to nature and so it makes sense for me to pair my subjects with natural backdrops. I think I am able to achieve what I want in my images the most when they are clearly drawn out and I know exactly what every detail should be like.

Where do you draw your inspiration from? I went into photography with quite a clear idea of what I wanted my images to look like. I knew that I wanted diffused light and bold subjects and I knew that I wanted them to have a dark edge, and so I often draw upon my own taste for imagery as inspiration. I have a very dark imagination and sometimes it feels endless with the dreamscapes that I want to translate into reality. Often times I build my pictures around a prop, as I find it easier to create a story if there is a starting point and something to build off of. Sometimes I take inspiration from locations, and other times from fairy tales - especially Little Red Riding Hood! Other times I am inspired by paintings, especially the classics and Pre-Raphaelites. I think that method of painting with a murky dark background and bold subject is very effective, and something that I often try to achieve. Lastly, I am inspired by certain artists, though typically not in a very direct way as I try my best to keep a unique aesthetic. I am inspired by Jamie Baldridge, Tom Chambers, Gregory Crewdson, and Julia Fullerton-Batten.

Your work contains a lot of digital editing (all beautifully done), how would you say that effects the definition of your work


as photography? Do you see your work as photography or something else? My photos are definitely manipulated, all to varying degrees. I think it is important for me to stress though that for an image to be successful after manipulation, it has to have some level of success before it is edited. I strive to create images that are technically sound and precise when I am shooting so that nothing relies on the post processing. I am not using any effects that are all digital, and a lot of people who come to my workshops are surprised to find out that I use only the most basic Photoshop tools to edit my images. Because I am self-taught, I found the most basic tools first and then ended up using them in unconventional ways. I would even say that I use nothing more than a photo retouch technician would to edit fashion images. Everything that I use I shoot myself (aside from credited textures) and no part of my process is all digital. This is why I

would not say that I am a digital artist or mixed media artist. I see my work as photography because most of what I am doing to my main picture is adding other pictures (self-taken) on top of it to create different effects. Aesthetically most changes are made with curves adjustments and the erasure tool, so it is all very simple and highly photo-based.

A big aspect of the art world these days is social media. You have a prominent online presence, in what ways has this helped you as a photographer and in what ways does it limit you? Social media is by and far the biggest reason why I started photography and the biggest reason why I was encouraged to pursue it as a career. I never, for one second, take for granted the help I have received along the way. It has been invaluable to me. I think that social networking is an important part of most artist’s futures these days, but it is not the end all be all. Social networking has helped me in many ways. I have licensed images for album covers, book covers and movie posters because of people finding me on Flickr or Facebook. I was recently found by two galleries in two different countries because of Flickr and Facebok as well. However, especially when starting my career, it did not play a big factor in getting jobs. I booked all of my exhibitions in 2010 by writing to galleries and keeping


for me is the ultimate in teaching experiences. I have a deep passion for underwater photography and I think it will be a really fun and unique class. I will be having a solo show of my large works in Amsterdam in May and will be participating in art fairs in London, Amsterdam, San Francisco, and New York this year as well. I will also be working on my second book.

What are your views on “photography” clichés that everyone is so obsessed about these days?

my fingers crossed. No one that I worked with in 2010 knew anything about my online social life, so it is possible to be an artist these days without having an online presence. However, I am finding it helpful more and more in terms of my career because I am currently looking for sponsors and having numbers to give people and social sites to look at is very helpful. I thought that by having my work online a gallery might be turned off to representing me since the work would be so readily available to view, but this has not been the case. I have found all galleries that I have met with to be very hip to the online community and do in fact encourage the use of online media. Most people in the art world need to promote themselves, so I think most people are happy when an artist is able to self-promote.

What are your plans for the future? I have a list of goals that I made for this coming year. One of those goals was to travel to another country, and I got to cross that one off when I went to England in January (so exciting...first time outside of the U.S.!). I plan on teaching several underwater workshops beginning in the Spring/Summer, which

I think it’s great when people see something they like and then try to achieve that effect because it is good practice, but there becomes a time with clichés (hence the name) that it becomes about doing something popular instead of doing something with passion. There are so many clichés out there, and all I can do is try to stay away from them as much as I can. I certainly participate in the ever-growing levitation cliché, but hopefully not in a way that is seen as cliché. I try to create story and atmosphere around my trick imagery and I think those types of photos are very organic to my style and portfolio.


Profile for Collect/ive  Magazine

Collect/ive Magazine || March 2011  

Featuring work from : Mike Bailey - Gates, Moriah Freed, Sarah Smiley, Alex Stoddard, Brooke Shaden, Lauren Parker, Amelia Oakley, Sarah Rie...

Collect/ive Magazine || March 2011  

Featuring work from : Mike Bailey - Gates, Moriah Freed, Sarah Smiley, Alex Stoddard, Brooke Shaden, Lauren Parker, Amelia Oakley, Sarah Rie...