GETTING TO KNOW
JOSEPH PAUL LEIGHTON
Joseph Paul Leighton is a self-taught artist who has spent the last 20 years developing his craft. Although his experience began with graphite drawings, he has since branched off into acrylic on canvas, custom design, largescale murals and sculpture. Leightonâ€™s work portrays an insightful, yet palpable perspective, arousing the senses and cultivating a genuine connection to his art. Leighton is a former combat marine who served two tours in the wake of September 11th and is now a firefighter for his hometown. His private work takes viewers on a profound journey through his own personal experiences. However, his primary focus is on engineering the visions of his clients, through a myriad of art forms. Leighton has completed multiple largescale murals for business owners and for private homeowners alike. Each design includes optional three-dimensional sculptures, quite literally bringing the images to life. His most recent mural can be seen on Highway 95 in Rhode Island. This mural was his largest feat yet at 5,000 square feet, and supported the building ownerâ€™s non-profit sponsor, Metta Students.
Q. Tell me a little bit about yourself! A. Born and raised in RI. I am 35, I have no formal training in art and I didn’t really start to take it seriously until around 2012. I remember hearing a lot about how impractical being an artist was growing up from just about everyone but my parents. I joined the Marines right out of high school in 2001 and spent 4 years in the infantry. I did two deployments, one of which was Afghanistan in 2004. I kept up the art skills I had learned primarily from my father, who is a R.I.S.D. graduate and Landscape architect. I used his lessons in sketching, shading, perspectives and, most of all, shadows to illustrate my letters home and journals while serving overseas. I ended up drawing a lot of tattoos for my fellow marines as well as my own. In 2005, I got out of the Marines as a Sergeant and started my new and current career as a firefighter. On the side I would work a lot of different construction jobs – landscaping, operating heavy machinery, building construction, definitely a jack of all trades and always keeping very busy. Q. How did you get into art? What kind of art do you create? A. In 2012, one of my sisters, who was a graphic designer for a restaurant group at the time, asked me if I could do a mural for Rick’s Roadhouse, a restaurant in Providence, Rhode Island. I said yes despite never having done anything like a mural before. I really didn’t have much of a portfolio at all and honestly didn’t have clue what I was doing, but I said yes knowing I would figure it out. Soon after, I also was approached by a friend to draw a collage of African animals for a cover ad in a hunting magazine. After that is was word of mouth that lead me from one mural job to next.
“I think it’s more about persistence than anything. 10% talent and 90% persistence will get you anywhere you want to go.” at the fire department remind me of the best parts of my time in the Marines. My off time is spent creating, drawing, building, painting, and sculpting— either for myself or commissioned work. Q. What inspires you to create your art? A. A lot of the artwork I do for myself can be easily tied to my experiences in the Marines or the Fire Department. I find it hard to truly describe or convey to others the emotions and conflict involved in being a veteran of both war and all that is involved in being a firefighter. I am lucky enough to have a talent that helps me express it, if only for myself. I think it would foolish not to use a tool like that. There are many veterans struggling much worse who would likely love to have such opportunity. I am also wild life enthusiast, so any study of animals is always fun and not quite as emotive or serious. And any oppurtunity to draw or sculpt wildlife is always fun and relaxing. Q. How do you create your art?
A. Currently, I am working a final design for an 20’x 50’ exterior mural for Xaco Taco. A modern Mexican restaurant in Downtown Providence, formally home to Rick’s Roadhouse. It also happens to be the exact wall a painted my first mural on in 2012.
A. Trial and error. However, for commissioned murals I have a very detailed process that took me some time to refine. When errors can cost money, you have to be confident in your process. I will normally do several smaller studies of any large mural before starting. I can then take the smaller image and project it larger, making myself a stencil to then expand upon.
Q. Is this your full time job?
Q. What is your favorite kind of art to create?
A. No. I am a firefighter and an artist. I find the two very different worlds are a wonderful balance for me. Structure and an opportunity to help others mixed with adrenaline and the brotherhood formed
A. Definitely murals, the bigger the better. I love seeing something big come to life. Sculpting is a close second. I still have a lot to learn about the casting process, but I still love it.
Q. Are you working on any projects now?
Photography by Margaret Brochu
Top Image: Painting hanging in entrance of Xaco Taco in Providence, RI Center Left Image: “Mind Melt” Center Right Image: “Blood Strips” – a Marines timeline collage Bottom Image: Share Metta Mural – displayed on 95 in Providence, RI
“If a painting can speak 1000 words, a mural can speak 100,000.”
Q. Is there an artwork you’re most proud of? A. I would say the custom Wizard of Oz bookends I sculpted as a gift for my fiancée, Tess. I had only done one other real sculpture before, and it was so much fun I couldn’t wait to do more. The other would have to be the Share Metta Mural on the side of route 95 at Thurbers Avenue in Providence. It’s a 5,000 square foot mural that had design input from both the Share Metta non-profit organization and the building’s owners. We were able to combine all of their ideas in a way that works together aesthetically and on a budget. I have never done anything so big that would be on display for so many— so it was a big accomplishment upon its completion.
to the process between YouTube and Instagram. I remember seeing art as a kid and thinking “I’ll never be that good so why bother.” A very immature outlook. Today there are so many unbelievably talented people out there. But being a little older I would say the biggest challenge could be the artists themselves. People are sometimes afraid to put themselves out there. My first mural was not good. I had no idea what I was doing. I have learned a lot of lessons the hard way, and I don’t have the formal training knowledge to fall back on. I think it’s more about persistence than anything. I like talking to older artists. They are less likely to be overprotective of the secrets and little hints that when applied would blow your mind. I think a lot of them would say the same thing. 10% talent and 90% persistence will get you anywhere you want to go. Just say yes. Never be afraid to try. By Margaret Brochu
Q. Do you do any commissioned work? Can you walk us through that process a little? How do you go about getting commissioned work? A. Yes. Most of what I have done for commission has come via word of mouth. I have done sculptures and some small drawings, but most have been murals. Murals, interior or exterior, have a lot of value. If a painting can speak 1000 words, a mural can speak 100,000. There are limits as to how much signage a commercial business can display outside of their building. Rhode Island’s policy is typically 20% of the building’s exterior square footage. However, with a mural you can convey many things through the artwork that won’t be considered a sign. Instead, it is viewed as artistic expression. The challenging part is figuring out what is in the mind of the client. What do they want to see? Sometimes they don’t know themselves, and it’s up to you as an artist to show it to them. I love the reactions when I get right. Q. What do you think the biggest challenge facing artists today is? A. That’s a good question. There are so many out there. It isn’t hard to find inspiration or a guide
t’s a warm Saturday at Lasell College. You could stay in and work, finish up a little bit more of your endless school projects, but you would rather go out and experience the City of Boston. All Google searches suggest that for an afternoon of culture, you should visit the MFA! The MFA is a wonderful museum. It is a huge complex with many different exhibits and events happening all year long. Not to mention how easy it is to get to (a small walk from the Longwood, Fenway, or Hynes Convention Center ‘T’ stops), and once you arrive, the admission cost is waived to all students. The only problem is, you have been to the MFA countless times before. It will always be a beautiful place with amazing art, but there are so many other things to explore! So those of you who are looking for a new way to spend an afternoon in an artsy way, here is a list! Each location on this list has been selected for a few reasons. Firstly, they are all easily accessible from the school. Hop on the T, walk, or grab an uber to get out and see something fresh. Secondly they are all reasonably priced, staying within the “college budget” range, offering reduced prices for specific criteria, and sometimes having free admission days for special occasions. And finally, they are different from the usual grand-hall style of exhibiting traditional art. They each have an element that adds a bit more finesse to regular exhibitions. All that’s left to do now is to get out there and have a fun, new experience!
The Institute of Contemporary Art
Boston Center for the Arts
The difficult-to-understand world of modern art is on display here at the Institute of Contemporary Art. It was designed to be the “renegade offspring of the Museum of Modern Art”, the sister institution to the MOMA in New York City. Anything from traditional art, to music, to interactive performances can be displayed here. It does have a permanent collection of various works, but the real treasure is the drive to promote new artists in the area who haven’t been established yet. Several times throughout the year, there are exhibitions set up specifically to bring that spotlight on fresh new additions to the art world, guaranteeing things you won’t see anywhere else.
The BCA is an entire block of space dedicated to a visual arts campus. This is another venue to nuture aspiring artists of Boston. There is a large collection of gallery shows and many performances on stage all for the audience to digest. On top of all the different exhibits that pass through the institution, many grand-scale events are held here. Take a peek at their full calendar to see a wide variety of huge gatherings, parties, and small, personal classes. A full year of activities is bound to have something to entertain the likes of anyone for a day in the city.
The Institute of Contemporary Art 25 Harbor Shore Drive, Boston, MA 02210 10 AM – 5 PM Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday 10 AM – 9 PM Thursday, Friday Closed Monday Take the Green Line to Park Street, walk over the Congress Street Bridge or the Seaport Boulevard Bridge, turn left onto Thompson Place, turn right onto Northern Avenue, and your destination will be on Harbor Shore Drive.
Boston Center for the Arts 539 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02116 12 PM – 5 PM Wednesday, Sunday 12 PM – 9 PM Thursday, Friday, Saturday Closed Monday and Tuesday Take the Green Line to Arlington, walk down to and turn right on Tremont Street, and the building is on the right.
Museum of Bad Art
SoWa Art and Design District
This is an organization dedicated to showing the worst art to all of Boston. It may seem harsh to showcase peoples’ worst works, but the founders of MOBA consider it a celebration of freedom from societal standards. But it is also a great laugh! I could describe it endlessly, but the best possible way to feel the emotions behind this museum is to go in person. There are three locations where you can find the collection, the largest exhibit hidden in the basement below the Somerville Theatre. Admission is free with the purchase of any event ticket— so take some time before or after a really nice show to explore the exceptional pieces of expression.
What was once a series of abandoned warehouses on the edge of Boston is now a hub of culture. The old buildings have evolved into galleries, studios, showrooms, shops, restaurants, and event halls— all built around cultivating the Boston art community. With so much to do in such a large place, it may seem intimidating to try and take it all on. Go for a nice stroll in the open markets of summertime, partake in the annual art walk, or get to know the artists and their work on first Fridays.
Museum of Bad Art Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square, Somerville, MA 02144
Check out their website for hours of operation, which varies by studio and event.
Opens 10 minutes before the first show of the day. Closes 10 minutes after the last show of the day.
Take the Green Line to the Prudential Center, walk down Newton Street, turn left onto Harrison Avenue, and it will be on your right.
Take the Green Line to Park Street, then the Red Line to Davis, and the theater is in Davis Square right where you exit.
SoWa Open Market 460 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02118
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum sits in the Fenway-Kenmore neighborhood of Boston, a few blocks away from the MFA. The museum was created by Isabella Stewart Gardner, an art collector who wished to share her rare treasures with the world. Both the art and the building itself are a combination of different artistic styles, something that is hard to pull off, but it is presented here seamlessly. With all of the different aesthetics going on and all the different things to look at, there is a hidden gem here for everyone. Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum 25 Evans Way, Boston, MA 02115 11 AM – 5 PM Daily Closed Tuesday Ride the Green Line to Fenway Station, cut through the park, and walk over a couple blocks down Fenway towards Evans Way and take a right. The Museum will be on your right.
Peabody Essex Museum Salem, Massachusetts is on every autumn bucket list. Throughout the rest of the year, many presume there is nothing left going on when all of the witches fly away. The tourists getting out of the way clears the path that leads straight to the Peabody Essex Museum. With exhibits, weekend festivals, and art-making programs, there is a lot to do at the museum. And if the art isn’t enticing enough (and if you are a bit of a history buff), there is a historical library with a collection of local documents, papers, and publications to open your mind even further. Peabody Essex Museum East India Square, 161 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970 10 AM – 5 PM Tuesday through Sunday This is the only location on this list that is not accessible by public transit. Uber, Drive up on your own or with friends, or try to orchestrate a school trip with the vans. By Emma Witbeck
Photography By Emma Witbeck
First things first I guess… my name is Nick Iby. I am a 22-year-old senior studying Entrepreneurship here at Lasell College. I started a clothing line called Adfectu Artwork during my sophomore year of college. Adfectu is what I will be pursuing full time after I graduate this May. Before I talk about my future plans I will bring you up to speed on how I got to where I am.
I was going through a tough time in my life and I turned to drawing to get my mind off of all the emotions and thoughts I had running through my head. I spent around 10-12 hours working on one drawing and when I finished I decided to hang it up on my wall. I didn’t feel better after my first drawing so I produced about a dozen more drawings and hung them
up on my dorm room wall. When friends came into my room they ouu’d and aww’d at my drawings and my roommate gave me the idea to make big prints of my drawings and helped me launch a website. The name “Adfectu” translates into “real feelings” and that is what my work is… my real feelings poured onto paper. Sadly, the prints did not sell but one day as I went to the school cafeteria, a friend of mine pulled me aside and asked if I could draw a daisy with my designs on it and if it could go on a phone case. So I did, and she bought my first ever phone case. Then another friend suggested putting the daisy onto a tank top and then I sold my first tank top. From there, I listened to friends and family about what designs I should make and what to put them on.
After multiple drawings and ideas, I developed quite the portfolio of images, which basically leads us up to now. I offer t-shirts, long sleeves, sweatshirts, tank tops, phone cases, pillows, hats, leggings, baseball tees, and as of last week I have BATHING SUITS, SPORTS BRAS, and WORKOUT SHORTS! (as you can tell Iâ€™m quite excited). All products have custom handmade designs on them. I am continuing to expand and looking forward to see what else is down the road. I have also taken my drawing skills to other mediums than clothing.
As I mentioned before, I get a lot of ideas from friends and family. Some of these ideas have come outside of a t-shirt. I have entered the freelance world of doodling on various things like murals, skateboards, surfboards, corn hole boards, shoes (lots of shoes), cups, and even pumpkins. I am starting to LOVE freelance work and if anyone reading would like to work together, feel free to reach out to me AdfectuArtwork@Gmail.com
phy and have also found a passion for modeling whether for Adfectu or not. Again, if anyone reading would like to work together, feel free to reach out to me AdfectuArtwork@gmail.com or contact Alex, Dan, Marc or Matt as well via their websites
Starting a clothing line has logically led to the exploration of the photography world. Almost like it was planned, my own brother Alex Iby (www.AlexIby. com) started photography around the same time I started Adfectu. He has blossomed into an amazing photographer and has been extremely helpful in photographing me and other models wearing my clothes. Through taking pictures with my brother I have met other amazing photographers such as Marc Klaus (www.marcklaus.squarespace.com), Dan Bullman (www.danbullman.com), and Matt Collamer (www. breakyourboundaries.tv). Some of their pictures are used below. Through them I have been able to explore photogra-
As another logical step, I have found a passion for documenting my life and sharing that experience on YouTube. I document most of my art projects from start to finish and have recently started showing the behind-the-scenes of the photoshoots I go on. So if you are curious about how I made the surfboard, created a rose design or just curious to see what goes on behind my photoshoots, subscribe to “Adfectu Artwork” on YouTube and you won’t be disappointed.
Illustration by/courtesy of Nicholas Kole for On the Verge
s The Life of aFreelance Illustrator
t is not common to hear from an artist that the loss of a job was “a blessing in disguise.” Many art students complete college unsure of what comes next; they anticipate working for a company or taking on freelance projects, but the idea of self-employment can seem terrifying.
Illustration by/courtesy of Nicholas Kole for Jellybots
Nicholas Kole, an illustrator and character designer, saw every loss and every gain as an opportunity. He had worked for a company and enjoyed it, but when the job fell through, he took the reins of his life and kept moving forward. “Freelancing is a leap,” Kole asserted, but he had much to say about the opportunities he gained in creating a brand for himself as a designer. His designs are the outcome of childhood dreams and an art student’s passion. The Rhode Island School of Design alum entered the world of art and illustration by watching his mother, who was an illustrator herself. He started drawing as a child and never stopped. Viewing the creations of popular
animation companies, reading comic books, and discovering the artistic style of Miyazaki fueled his fascination for the whimsical and fantastical. After seeing Lord of the Rings, Kole imagined a career in which he too could craft fictional worlds. Despite frequent moves during his childhood, Kole settled on RISD as his school of choice and found that art school was something that would benefit him, mentioning that he “went in with a rigid idea of what art is.” Some see art school as a waste of money and of time that might be better dedicated to the artist’s chosen craft; others believe that art is not a true career path. Kole, however, found art school to be an opportunity to network, to build his portfolio, and to figure out what art really was to him. RISD represented a chance to hone his art skills and move away from his obsession with Spiderman. As an art student, he was also able to create connections with his professors. One urged him to analyze the pop culture that he already admired and to use his new insights to further develop his own character styles. “Having discipline and structure was helpful,” Kole said. At art school, he was encouraged to
Illustration by/courtesy of Nicholas Kole for Disney
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embrace things he never would have encountered. Recognizing the huge burden of expenses, he explained that he was supported by scholarships and aid and highly recommended art school for anyone who can attend. After college, Kole took a full-time job with 38 Studios, a small gaming company, where he experienced behind the scenes what it took to run a company. Although the gaming studio fell through, Kole saw this as “blessing in disguise”; he was able to work for a larger company and observe how it was managed. Kole has brought those insights and the knowledge he gained at 38 Studios to his current freelance career. Kole compared the company’s demise to the way a dandelion disintegrates. Although his job fell through, he has been able to build on his close coworker relationships in his career networking. To promote himself, he utilizes the Internet: Through Instagram, Behance, and other accounts, he is able to build relationships with possible employers and with fans who praise and promote him. He attends conventions and festivals where artists gather; he prints out portfolio pieces that he can share, sell, and autograph (since he is still a fan boy at heart).
Through his networking and his dedication to his craft, Kole has had the opportunity to work with large companies: Disney, EA, Mattel, and Hasbro. Devoting time to his portfolio, to his personal practice, and to personal projects like Jellybots, Kole has made his childhood dreams come true before the age of thirty. “It is still exciting being recognized by Disney!” Kole exclaimed when asked about dream companies he would want to work with. Nicholas Kole has been able to set himself apart not only by his art, but also through his passion for creative work. Although some may discern a distinctive artistic style, it was hard for him to pinpoint that style. After much thought, he selected three words to describe it: “Colorful afternoon adventure.” Understanding movement and structure while utilizing vibrant colors and expressions, Kole is able to bring characters and worlds to life. Art has always been about capturing a singular moment while also telling its story. Whether through an expressive impressionistic painting, a three-dimensional figure, or a digital rendition of a fantastical world, artists have been recording life, moment by moment. Nicholas Kole is one of those artists who will someday be a household name. By Emma Helstrom
Illustration by/courtesy of Nicholas Kole for Andrew Peterson
Illustration by/courtesy of Nicholas Kole for Runic Games
TARNISHED MICHAEL BUENO
Photography by Alexander Wyman
BUENO An Air Force member and design student at Lasell College with a refeshing eye for photography.
PE RS PE CT IV E. 25
TARNISHED MICHAEL BUENO
member of the Air Force, a Lasell College student, and a photographer, Michael Bue-
no has a lot on his plate. However, it seems to be nothing unmanageable for him. His knack for photography began as a kid, where he grew up around cameras as his aunt was a journalist. Around his final year of high school, he got his first DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera.
His skills improved to the point of getting a cease and desist letter from his high school for doing so many senior portraits for other students. One of his most memorable photographical experiences was capturing the Aurora Borealis in Alaska during some of his time in the military. He talks about stepping out of a bar for fresh air at 2 a.m. to such a beautiful sky. â€œLike any good photographer should do, I had my camera on me.â€?
Michael tries to minimally edit each of his photos, with the hope of capturing all of the beauty that could be enhanced by the editing process, in the actual photo. This is tricky for a photographer, as To be a National Geographic or Time magazine photographer is Michaelâ€™s biggest aspiration, and what drives him forward to keep photographing. Something
they have to really be aware of the environment and know their camera inside and out, so that it can set up accordingly.
he finds comfort in is looking through his photographs and taking in the ways they make him feel, as well as his response to them.
THE FIRST 10,000 PHOTOS ARE YOUR WORST ONES.
In a discussion about Michael’s time in the military, he talks about how his squad traveled all over the United States, beginning with boot camp in San Antonio, Texas. Michael serves as a POL in the military (Petroleum, Oil, Lubricant), more simply described as a fuel specialist. Michael makes sure the aircraft in the sky make it off the ground, and stay in the air. As far as photography within the military, Michael makes sure to not let it get in the way of his work while on site. “Photography really satisfies my creative side, where the military helps complement me as a person with the use of character building...They are both such different paths for me personally, but have made me appreciate the little things along the way.”
By Alexander Wyman
ARTISTS YOUNG & OLD
An Intergenerational Art Show & and The Drive To Create
n March 9th, 2018, an intergenerational art show called Colors premiered at Lasell Village. Inspired by Lasell
College, and sharing its campus, the founders of Lasell Village envisioned a place where the pursuit of lifelong learning would be central to the lifestyle. Living here, residents discover a diverse group of open-minded individuals who share the belief that learning is more than an activityâ€” it is a way of being.
Colors is a great example of this.
It featured artists as young as 7 months to retired seniors, presenting work side by side. The show included 145 different pieces of art, over a variety of different media, including needlepoint, pastels, collage, stained glass, quilting, stamping, water color, oil, and lastly acrylic paints.
STARTING YOUNG The young artistsâ€™ work consists of attempts to replicate classic art, original art with simple art techniques, and illustrations of stories they as a class have read. Some of it is individual work, and other pieces are collaborations, done by the entirety of the class. Though simple, there exists a definite appeal as you see rules of art brokenâ€” using approaches artists to their work that artists would never normally make. Their art is free of structure, created by children unbound by limitationsâ€” passionate work made with
7 The older artists’ creations consists of orig-
of techniques and structure, and understanding
inal pieces, ranging through many different
why they are used. This is art that takes time,
subjects. Their work, however, is the exact
care, and focus. Quilts, realistic paintings, and
opposite of their younger fellow artists, made
needlework art forms that are absent in the
with a slow, structured, and careful approach
work of the children. The dichotomy of placing
to every detail. The children’s greatest appeal
the two different styles of art next to each oth-
is their lack of limitation and freedom in their
er is the backbone of the show.
art, whereas the older artists’ is their mastery
Seeing the different approaches taken by the two
something new (which I did, the moment I got back
groups mixing and working together, creates a
from the gallery). I sat down and just got to work
unique environment compared to any other art
drawing, not caring if what I made was good or
show you may see. Colors initiates an opportunity
bad. This gallery inspired something in me that I
that makes you think about the type of work you
believe all galleries and works of art should doâ€”
could create, and how your work could develop.
compel someone to want to make art themselves.
Being in that gallery creates a desire to make
That raw feeling can be felt by everyone regardless
something new, which I believe comes from the
of age, a feeling of wanting to make something
freedom and energy of youth, along with the
new and explore different color palettes. I would
wisdom and focus of age. I will admit that going
like to see more galleries do what Colors has done.
through the gallery made me motivated to go
It is an interesting concept and presentation.
and try some new styles, or to sit down and make By Paul Clohisy
Title Image - by Ellen Shishko & Barn Students 3 - Painting by Emma Mahony 4 - Photo of Emma Mahony by Sarah Desroche 7 - Painting by Emma Mahony 8 - Art by Diane Johnson 10 - Quilt by Louise Freedman, Ethel Kantor, Martin Katz, Ann Mignosa, Harriet Pemstein, Jim Pratt, Caroline Schastney, and Peter Stringham 11 - Photo by Melanie Sunnerberg of Peter Stringhamâ€™s Quilt 14 - Needlepoint by Judy Green 15 - Photo by Samantha Betty of Jean Stringhamâ€™s Quilt 17 - Photo by David Gallant 22 - Quilt by Judy Becker 2 ,6 ,9, 16, 19, 20 - Margaret Brochu 1, 13, 21, 24 - Art by students of the Barn
Art for the Shaping Feature: John MacArthur
When we envision art, it is almost always an abstract image we come up with. But for John MacArthur, art is something three dimensional — an object to be held and shaped. The following interview focuses on the hands-on aspect of art, as well as the various steps involved in MacArthur’s artful journey throughout school and the real world. Q. Who are you? A. I’m an artist and student who is on medical leave at Lasell. Q. There’s more isn’t there? A. Of course (laughs). Lately, I’ve been working on projects with renowned performance artist, Dave Cole. And I do a great amount of solo work. Q. What types of media do you utilize in your art? A. Mostly sculptures. Wood, clay, glass and stranger media like bone and things like that.
Q. Of these media, which is your favorite to use?
A. If I could be working on casting and glassblowing every day, I would do it. Lately, I’ve been working a lot with wood and experimenting with bone. I’ve been finding the structure is very similar to wood.
Though constructed as an art piece in glass, this hammer can still be used practically in daily life. The hammer-head in this work was crafted by pouring heated material into a glass mold.
Q. How has your experience been working with a very well-known artist?
Q. I n y o ur o pinio n, w ha t do y o u t h i n k is t he m a in pur po se o f a r t ?
A. It feels like it has been more influential and educational than college. In the many ways of interacting differently with tools and objects and sculpting concepts and as far as marketing yourself as an artist, I have learned so much. Access to a workshop and tools has given a great boom to my work. I have my own space in the workshop, and we can kind of bounce ideas off each other all day.
A. Th e a r t i st ’s j o b i s t o h o l d u p a m i rro r t o so ci e t y. I t ’s n o t a b o u t p u sh i n g o n e o p i n i o n o r t h e o t h e r, i t s j u st a b o u t r a i si n g t h e q u e st i o n i n t h e fi r st p l a c e . My b o ss a n d fr i e n d [ Da v e C o l e ] d i d a p e r fo r ma n ce p i e ce b u i l d i n g a mus i c b o x o u t o f a st e a mro l l e r t h a t p l ay s th e n a t i o n a l a n t h e m. A re a l l y g re a t w o rk o f a r t . Bu t i n t h e e n d , t h e mu si c b o x i s n ’t ma d e t o b e p a t r i o t i c o r u n p a t r i o t i c . A st e a mro l l e r i s b o t h a si g n o f p ro g re s s a n d a sy mb o l fo r d e st r u ct i o n .
Q. What sort of themes do you tend to explore in your art? A. While working with casting glass I experimented with changing a 2.5-pound hammer into a glass hammer. That was about the idea of something that is considered functional and, in a way, flipping it. The hammer is a symbol of masculinity, and so you subvert it by making it no longer fit into its utilitarian confines—giving it what’s seen as more “feminine” and fragile traits. Yet the glass itself is so sturdy, that I use the hammer to nail things in sometimes. The message would be that, even if someone [a woman] is beautiful, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t have some physical property of strength, too.
A section of his studio, dedicated to his long art process.
Q. D o y o u t hink y o u ga ined a so lid educa t io na l fo unda t io n in hig h scho o l ? A. Could have been better. Thing is [in that setting], nobody is really pushing you to do something incredible. When I went to community college, it helped me learn the basics, and when I started in a more competitive setting at Lasell, it helped push me to challenge myself. At that point, you really want to love art and make a living out of it. Go the full distance. Put aside video games, sleep, anything that’s in your path. It will probably suck. And, of course, it’ll be worth it in the end.
The artist himself, shown here in the workshop.This is where the bulk of his work is mapped and completed.
A wooden vase decorated with violet for a unique aesthetic.
Q. Since you’ve had experience in high school, in college, and out in the real world, do you feel like it’s possible to do it all on your own, and without these stops? A. Art school does help with things like understanding form and composition. If you already had that understanding, all you would have to do is gain access to tools and start creating. Q. Do you ever find yourself fed up with the isolation that is required of many creative pursuits, including art? A. Yeah I mean, networking is always a big part of it, too. It goes from late nights out with friends and co-workers, to late nights in by yourself. There’s always a big range. Q. What do you think about artists whose art is tied to their drug use. Is it better that they do use drugs and create, or remain sober for art that is more authentic? A. I don’t know that being sober would make it authentic, I feel like it would be quite the opposite. What works for some people, doesn’t work for others. Some people don’t even touch alcohol and come up with wildly creative ideas. It’s an interesting question. What should we value more, the artist or the art?
A painted sculpture made of clay.The piece largely displays a horn—a pattern in MacArthur’s work reflecting masculinity.
Q. In terms of future projects, what’s the next step for you? A. My next goal is to create an entire workshop out of glass. It would have anything from glass hammers to chisels to drill bits. So I could take a power drill and remove the outer shell that’s plastic and then reattach a glass shell to it—keeping the wiring intact. It would almost be like a wider scope in all like, a man’s jewelry is his “toolry”. Q. Do you have any more advice for other creators out there? A. You have to make sure your head is in the right place before you can start making stuff and doing good work. With me, if I’ve been feeling off, I won’t be doing good work. It’s important to have a stable personal life and then things will come to you. You’ll have ideas, and they might not be a finished product, but when you do more and more…you’ll be able to narrow it down over time. Also, it helps if you have someone that you trust and is great in the field. One more thing. Look for non-paying internships. If they have knowledge--and you aren’t starving—that should be paying enough. By Michael Costa
(Top Left and Middle) Shown above is the partial process which MacArthur uses to showcase a glossy finish on the wooden chalice shown in the left frame. (Top Right) MacArthurâ€™s take on a chess piece made out of bone and embedded into wood. Though quite a different material, the properties of bone are very similar to wood, and so are relatively easy to work with. He plans on working more with bone in the future, and may even craft an entire set of bone chess pieces with an accompanying board. (Bottom) Stylized chess pieces made of bone and sitting atop a bone base. Discarded deer antlers are a prime source of the bone used in this project.
TURNING DREAMS INTO REALITY with Darriele Jefferson
Wealthy Empire Co-Owner
WEALTHY EMPIRE INTERVIEW Q. Who are you and where are you from? A. I am Darriele Jefferson (co-owner of Wealthy Empire Clothing). Some know me as Redd. I’m from Brooklyn, New York and currently live in Middletown, New York. I am a Junior here at Lasell College and major in sports management.
Q. What does Wealthy Empire represent? A. Wealthy Empire Clothing represents the true meaning of wealth, which is not just an abundance of valuable possessions or money. On average, a person thinks someone is wealthy because they have a lot of money. We are getting the message across to people that wealth is being rich in health, friendship, love, loyalty, etc. and not just money. Things that are priceless you can say.
Q. How did Wealthy Empire begin? A. It’s funny how this all began. I used have a huge passion for basketball. I’ve been playing ever since I could walk as my parents tell me. I had dreams of playing basketball professionally until my freshman year of college. I tried out and did not make the team. At that point, I needed to face reality and find something else to do. I always received a lot of compliments on how I dress. I was into designer clothes, sneakers and the latest fashion trends ever since I was young kid. With my creative mind and my good sense of fashion, I said “why not start a clothing line?” I brought the idea to my good, close friends John and D’andre. We thought long and hard about what the name would be. One day during this past summer in John’s backyard during the solar eclipse, it hit us and we came up with Wealthy Empire Clothing.
Q. Where do you see Wealthy Empire in five years? A. In five years, I see us really taking off. By that I mean getting a lot of attention in the fashion world. I also see us growing, not growing just as a clothing line but as a business. I can also see us possibly getting into fashion shows and stores.
Q. Who is your favorite designer and how have they inspired you? A. It would have to be Dapper Dan without a doubt. He has inspired me because, in my eyes, he is “Big Bro” to a lot of these designers. He has paved the way for high end fashion designers that we know today. For example, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, MCM, etc. If it wasn’t for him there would have been no sweat suits, hoodies, hats, etc. for those type of designers back in the day. A lot of the celebrities back then would go to him for that type of stuff. He was put out of business because he was knocking off designers. In today’s time, he has his own boutique and Gucci is paying him to make clothes. It is crazy how the table has turned!
Q. What’s your outfit of choice? A. It depends, if I want to feel comfy I would pick a Nike Tech sweat suit or a Ralph Lauren Polo sweat suit. Now, if I’m feeling myself and want to look nice, some designer jeans, Ralph Lauren Polo crew neck white-t, some Air Maxes or Retro Jays, and a designer belt.
Q. Who has assisted in making Wealthy Empire what it is? Photography by Jake Lewis
A. My close friend John Holder (CEO) has assisted me in making Wealthy Empire. He helped me come up with the name and logo. He pretty much has a say in everything that goes on with this clothing line just like myself. He also takes care of shipping the orders out while I am away at school.
Dame Butler (Left) Darriele Jefferson (Right)
By Jake Lewis
Back in Time
A Photographic Journey
hen Dan Campbell acquired his father’s collection of photo negatives he never imagined to be spending thousands of hours in the darkroom developing and scanning historic images. Campbell has dedicated over twenty years to perfecting these images. “My dad has had a large collection of negatives that he gave to me a long time ago, he wanted me to try and do something with them,” said Campbell. Using a darkroom, Campbell and his father printed the photos in a traditional way using very expensive equipment. This method takes a lot of patience and Campbell taught himself how to successfully create the negatives through a lot of trial and error. Campbell has over 4500 glass negatives in his collection, many of these historic images give us a glimpse of what life was like. The original photographs were taken between 1870 and 1930 and the process consisted of taking the collection of developed images, making digital images and printing them out. “As I scan the negatives, I archive them, the negatives are very fragile and are over 100 years old,” said Campbell. With these large negatives, Campbell mastered the technique, but he wanted more than just a
standard size image. “I told my dad, I’d like to see these huge. These 8 x 10 are great and everything but I want to see these them 42 x 60,” said Campbell. “He said to try and do it, so that’s what I did. I took them and ran with it” At the Wedeman Gallery at Lasell, Campbell teamed up with professor of fashion Jill Carey to create an immersive experience called Back in Time: A Photographic Journey. Professor Carey, who is also the curator of The Lasell College Fashion Collection, handpicked garments and accessories that brought back visitors of the gallery to interesting times in The United States. The fashion collection has over two thousand items from the nineteenth and twenty-first centuries. “The fashion helped make it more of an experience. A lot of people were really blown away by the clothing, they couldn’t believe how well preserved the clothing was,” said Campbell. “It was interesting to see people’s take on things, people had a lot of questions. They had a hard time wrapping their mind around just how old the pictures really are,” said Campbell. “A lot of these pictures are from when Carnegie and Rockefeller were coming up from the height of the industrial revolution.” Campbell’s vast collection of rare negatives contain
photos of Geronimo’s tribe, soldiers coming back from the Spanish American war, World War I, World War II and more. This collection serves as a time machine made up of thousands of images, “time is interesting to me and looking in to a photograph is an interesting way to travel back,” said Campbell. His Father clearly saw the value in history when he started this priceless collection that shows us a very different United States. When asked about which of his images were his favorite Campbell said, “I have a lot of favorites, they’re like my kids I couldn’t say I like this one more than the other one. Campbell said that he gets a new favorite every time he starts scanning. “When you look at the negative it’s like opening a present. You can only see so much holding it up through the light. When you scan it though, then you can really go into it.” Most of the negatives Campbell scans get filed away unless they’re damaged. You can view and purchase the archived negatives online at his website (gpc-limited.com). Campbell is currently focused on where to showcase his work next, he said that putting his work in the gallery was a great experience and he enjoyed it thoroughly. By Michael Bueno
Photography Courtesy of Dan Campbell
Everyone has a song that speaks to them. It can be because of the beautiful words sung or the deeper meaning hidden within the notes. Regardless of what it is, something pulls you in.
The Imaging for Graphic Design class here at Lasell College challenges its students to find that very special song which speaks to them, and to illustrate it through an abstract, digitalw artpiece. After creating layers and layers of detail through Adobe Photoshop, the following pages are what they designed.
by Ruth B.
TARNISHED is a non-profit, student-produced publication by students at Lasell College's Graphic Design League (GDL).