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May 2013


Issue Four


Inspiration for the Creative Entrepreneur

In this issue of Show Pony Magazine: Opportunity

Photo by Jeremy Lawson

A Letter from the Director of Art

A FEW THOUGHTS FROM DAVID CENKO Over the next few years, anytime anyone needed a brochure, logo or help with a class, I would assist, just to build up my humble little faux-leather bound portfolio. That’s such an important rule -- never turn down a chance to better yourself, no matter how rudimentary you may think it is. You never know when such a “simple” thing could turn into something bigger and better.


he hardest part about success isn’t starting, it’s getting that first opportunity -- just to get your foot in the door. You know you’re good, you know you have something great to offer people, but how the heck can anyone else see what you have to offer if no one will give you a chance? In this issue of Show Pony, we feature the stories of those who have experienced both self-made opportunities and those that knocked on their door. Opportunities are a lot like relationships or friendships -- sometimes you have to be in the right place at the right time. However, sometimes you really have to work to achieve them. Over my career, I am still very grateful for my first opportunity that helped shape the rest of my life as a graphic designer.

I’ve been designing digitally for around 18 years. I’m actually not formally trained as a graphic designer, I graduated with a degree in Journalism from Ball State University. Once I saw my first MacWorld Magazine article about digital illustration, layout and design, I was instantly fascinated. So in 1995, to learn the craft, I bought (with the assistance of my parents) an old floor model Macintosh Performa 5200 from a Walmart in Muncie, Indiana. From that first time I launched a borrowed version of Illustrator 5.5, I knew this was for me -- all I needed was that first opportunity. But who would give a kid without a graphic design degree a chance?

From there I got my first opportunity. A friend from grade school had mentioned that his sister, who was a Creative Director at a Northwest Indiana newspaper was looking for a graphic designer. Opportunity #1. I interviewed with them and was offered the job. I was then teamed up with the design group and helped create newspaper ads and collateral for local businesses to the area. I stayed at that job for almost 2 years and absolutely loved it. That simple opportunity then progressed to jobs in Phoenix, Chicago and now Los Angeles. I often think to myself, where would I be without that first opportunity? It’s hard to say, perhaps I would have broken into the field another way, but, I am very grateful for the path I took and the people that I met along the way. It wasn’t always easy, but, even the bad experiences give you something to learn from. Thanks for reading.

I spent years developing my portfolio -- using made up clients -- designing and writing everything myself as quickly as that little 75 MHz processor would allow.



Celebrate Every Meal Antique Taco owners Rick & Ashley Ortiz bring their unique blend of market Mexican fare and antique décor to Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood.


SHOW PONY MAGAZINE – Issue Four – May 2013

Features 3

A Letter from the Director of Art David Cenko shares some of his thoughts


A Life of Pie Friends and family are a recipe for success at The Pie Hole.


New Market Tracy Wilkinson and Simon Storey have joined forces to launch Store-LA.


Maker By Nature Architect Simon Storey is an expert on doing more with less.


Celebrate Every Meal Antique Taco shares their unique blend of market Mexican fare and antique décor.


One Piece at a Time Sought-after furniture designer, Jason Lewis, shares his journey.


Product Design + Intellectual Property Rights Scott Beach explains copyrights, patents and commercial marks.


An Interview Flora Wiegmann speaks with Los Angeles artist Kate Costello


Through the Eyes of Myles Kwesi Hutchful One man’s journey from investment banker to successful photographer and filmmaker.


She’s Crafty Kristin St. Clair welcomes us into her studio and shares the details of her evolving career.


On Solid Ground Backyard gardener turned urban farming advocate, Tara Kolla is finally back in business.


A Place of Amazement and Beauty Located in the Marais area of Paris, Ofr is a bibliophile’s dream come true.








Rebecca Hill Editor-in-Chief/ Director of Photography

David Cenko Director of Art

Scott Beach Legal and Public Policy Editor

Jeff Edsell Web Developer

A special thanks to all those who made this issue possible Kate Costello Photographer

Myles Kwesi Hutchful Photographer

Through the Eyes of Myles Kwesi Hutchful One man’s journey from investment banker to successful photographer and filmmaker.


Jeremy Lawson Photographer

Steve Krason Photo Retoucher

Lisa Weatherbee Photographer

Flora Wiegmann Writer

New Market Tracy Wilkinson and Simon Storey have joined forces to launch Store-LA.










ong-time friends Matty Heffner and Sean Brennan, owners of The Pie Hole, began their partnership with a book of Matty’s family recipes and Sean’s experience in the hospitality industry. Today their business is a thriving collaboration that includes a pastry chef, enthusiastic staff and a community of friends.

companies, fashion and retail, students and professionals, artisans and models, all provide the wonderful balance of The Arts District.

The Pie Hole is located in the building which formerly housed the famous, Joel Bloom’s corner market, in the center of the Los Angeles Arts District. What aspects of the neighborhood made you choose to open your business in this location?

The process of opening a restaurant is often a complicated and daunting endeavor. As small business owners, what were some of the challenges you faced in the beginning stages of opening your shop?

SEAN We were looking for a location with a sense of community, a real neighborhood. The Arts District is full of creative, interesting organizations and people. As we were building the space out we were lucky to get to know people who stopped by just to wish us well and share their excitement. Those relationships still stand, and we feel very lucky to have such great people supporting us in our community. >

The Arts District is filled with wonderful independent shops and restaurants. In what ways do the business owners in the neighborhood collaborate to support one another? SEAN The businesses in the neighborhood seem to complement one another. Even the other restaurants, bakeries, and coffee shops all come into The Pie Hole and hang out. The mix of design and media >



We shop with our fellow business owners, support their shows, and provide caffeine and pie to aid in their pursuits. It’s all about creating and maintaining great relationships. We want other small businesses to succeed and support them.

SEAN The permitting process was extremely daunting, especially since we had a limited budget and the building infrastructure was so damn old. In the final two months of the shop opening there were so many moving parts it was hard to stay organized, focused and positive despite setbacks. We just focused on keeping a positive attitude and working hard. Once we were open we became busy and keeping up with demand has been a challenge. Pie is expensive to make so we learned to manage our expenses right away. It was also a challenge at times to explain the concept to everyone. We make everything from scratch, use high quality ingredients and pay people a livable wage. Those elements make our pie expensive compared to the factory made stuff in the supermarkets. When store-bought pie is the only experience someone has had, paying six dollars for a slice is difficult. That’s why we treat people well and make sure it’s the best pie they’ve ever had. >


Angel City Steak & Ale Pot Pie, Earl Grey Tea Pie

Mexican Chocolate Pie with Espresso Pastry Cream

Partners in Pie: Sean Brennan and Matty Heffner

What resources do you suggest the city of Los Angeles could provide in order to support and encourage independent entrepreneurs? SEAN The city can provide a more expedient permitting process: everything from waste management, electrical compliance, health department, and parking regulations. In addition, entrepreneurs could benefit from more commercial enterprise zones to entice new businesses, and more tax credits for small businesses to increase their workforce, buy equipment, and invest in neighborhoods. >

You have stated, “We believe a pie shop is a living institution, a neighborhood gathering spot, and a welcoming environment for all.” Can you share your philosophy on the importance of belonging to a community? SEAN The basis of any good business model is repeat customers. You have to create a relationship and there is no better way to do that than to surround yourself and your guests with good people. We treat everyone extremely well and hope they come back and become regulars. It’s a symbiotic relationship when you have a community minded business in a neighborhood that appreciates you. You have to create a place where people want to be so they will return. A community’s well-being is dependent on the quality of relationships among the residents. This social capital creates a sense of belonging and in turn enhances the overall health of a community. This is our goal, one slice of pie at a time. >



How has your connection to the residents and members of your local business community enhanced the viability of not only your business endeavors, but the quality of your life? SEAN We look forward to work each day and feel an obligation to provide the highest quality product and service to our community. That sense of responsibility is heightened when you have such a close relationship with your neighbors. Everyone we work with – vendors, to neighbors, to non-profits we donate to – are all part of the network we rely on that is based on solid relationships. Difficulties are much easier to cope with when you have great relationships with those whom you need to problem solve with. When we set out on this adventure we knew we had to create an environment we felt passionate about and loved spending all our time supporting. You have to love what you do, that’s an important aspect of quality of life. >

Sean and Matty, can you share your thoughts on the importance of choosing business partners who not only compliment your skill set, but also share your dedication to creating a business that reflects your personal integrity? SEAN Going into business with someone is like marriage. It’s commitment and building a relationship on trust and a common vision. Our base is honesty and a shared idea of what we wanted to provide to people, which hasn’t changed to this day and never will. If you want to create an authentic experience for your customers it has to start with the ownership and trickle all the way down to each cup of coffee. The foundation to all of that is trust, which is not all that easy to come by. We have a common trait: we are honest and tell it like it is. That is not to say we aren’t polite or are stubborn, it just means that we both got along because we always say what we mean. Matty is my partner in all the definitions of the word and I can’t value that enough. >

MATTY Sean and I believe in what we do and what we are creating. Sean’s skill set is complementary to mine in a lot of ways, and that always keeps a fresh perspective. We try to adapt to each other’s strengths and weaknesses. In the end, you are asking a customer to trust you: trust that you are serving them something amazing, trust that it will be worth their money and trust that they will walk out happy and want to come back. The only way to ensure that kind of trust is to have a group of individuals working with you that share your core set of values. That is what sets us apart from anyone else. And the customers see that and it makes them feel like they are part of it. >



The Pie Hole offers pie by the slice, individual savory pot pies, and delicious coffees



Sean, how have your previous career experiences – teacher, bartender, wine director, consultant and manager – contributed to the success of The Pie Hole? SEAN The crew at The Pie Hole probably get sick of hearing this but I believe life is a grand experiment and we bring the skills from our own personal tool box that we have gathered through our life experiences to everything we do. I’m methodical about skills that I want to develop and try to manage for my weaknesses, characteristics that take time and experience. I’ve enjoyed serving others since I was very young, which is a strand that I try to bring into every aspect of my life. Teaching helps me stay patient and bring a coaching mentality to training. Bartending gave me the ability to serve all kinds of people in just about any situation you can imagine, which I like to call my therapist skill set. In managing and consulting it has always been about organization and bringing clarity to thinking around complex ideas. If I see commonality in success across a diverse enough organizational spectrum, it should be scalable. I have enough experience to know that I have a lot more to learn. I also know that surrounding yourself with people who believe in a shared vision, functioning as a learning organization, is the best bet for success. >

Matty, The Pie Hole began as a life-long dream you shared with your mother, Becky Grasley. What were some of the key factors in your ability to turn your aspirations into a reality? MATTY Above all, I believe you have to put away your fear of failure. Early in the process, when my mom and I were talking about opening a pie shop, we said that it didn’t matter if we were successful or not. It only mattered that we gave it a try. >

Can you elaborate on your experience of working together as mother and son? MATTY It can be challenging, because no one wants to disappoint his mother! But in the end, my mom trusts Sean and I to run the day to day and push the business forward. I am just happy that she was able to see her life-long dream realized and that I got to help her do it. >

All of the pies served are made from scratch using a combination of Becky’s and (Head Chef) Beth Kellerhals’ recipes with locallysourced ingredients. How does this commitment to craft enhance the flavor of your pie and the experience of visiting your shop? SEAN I think the key to our success has been that we have something for everyone. We have an amazing chef, Beth that comes up with amazing pies, some that aren’t your typical offerings. Some of her pies appeal to all of the many “foodies” who visit us. We also have my mom’s recipes that are classic and time honored and appeal to people who just love pie. Beth is the chef and when executing a take on a family recipe we are always amazed at how awesome it is. No matter what kind of pie you choose, it will be made with fresh, local and seasonal ingredients. All of the pies are the direct result of the skill and hard work of our chef, Beth and our awesome kitchen staff.

What pie flavors can we look forward to enjoying this spring? SEAN Local fruit, especially berries will be in season soon. Before we determine our menu, we need to taste the fruit and try recipes. I’m not going to ruin the surprises, but I guarantee they will be amazing! >

Beth, in addition to your education at The French Pastry School in Chicago, your background includes adventures traveling to China to learn Kung Fu and calligraphy. How have your diverse artistic and cultural experiences influenced your creativity in the kitchen? BETH Traveling and living in another culture is exciting and terrifying at first. After some time you make a few friends, learn a few words, eat something local and delicious and life settles. You have to be open to what happens during that day because that is part of the fun. I think life in a kitchen is like that on a daily basis. >

Beth, tell us about your collaboration with The Pie Hole founder and ‘pie mother’, Becky Grasley and her son Matty. How does your skill and creativity combine to enhance her recipes and vision for the menu? BETH It’s great to be able to build from the tradition their family has. It gives The Pie Hole its soul. We are a true family-run organization and take inspiration from each other all the time. When developing new pies we have the tradition to stand on and the culinary skill of the kitchen staff to make the menu exceptional. >

Beth, you are from the Midwest and also attended pastry school in Chicago. Have you found that living and working in LA has changed your techniques and recipes because of the larger variety and availability of seasonal ingredients? BETH I love the Green City Market in Chicago, but I didn’t go on a regular basis. I love that LA has a farmer’s market on every corner, especially the one by my house! I rush home from work on Tuesdays so I can walk there. I always stuff myself from the little food stalls before I make my purchases. The ingredients here in LA are inspiring to the cook’s craft; I like the creative challenge that it brings. It keeps me inspired and connected to amazing ingredients. >


The Pie Hole Los Angeles 714 Traction Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90013

Chef Beth Kellerhals

Earl Grey Tea Pie






Moon Lamp




shared love of design has always been the foundation of Tracy Wilkinson and Simon Storey’s friendship, and it continues to inspire their business collaboration. Launched in 2012, Store-LA sells handmade furniture and accessories by Storey, which combine seamlessly with Wilkinson’s hand-built ceramics and woven lamps. Wilkinson’s career as a fashion designer, brand owner and now creative director have given her the experience to develop her hobby into a flourishing online marketplace. As demand for her handmade products continues to grow, her work methods and business model continues to evolve.



You are originally from small town in the English countryside: Can you share some of  the elements of your upbringing that inspired you to pursue a career as an artist and designer? > Trying

to get out would be one!! I was your typical kid growing up in a small town and feeling like I was missing out on a big exciting world. Looking back I see how the landscape and natural beauty has influenced my work now, but I certainly didn’t appreciate it at the time. I was introverted and felt very happy to work on projects alone, making things and drawing. I only realized that a career in design was possible in high school, through the encouragement of a teacher. I was encouraged very much by my school and my parents to pursue a career in design. My parents were, and still are, very practical Yorkshire folk, so I met them half way...choosing fashion, which seemed to be a field that could provide a living for me. I think it would have been more difficult if I had chosen sculpture or fine art.

Can you elaborate on your career in the fashion industry and tell us what role that experience plays in TW Workshop? >I

worked in corporate fashion for years, both in New York and Los Angeles. I initially moved to the US to take a position at Banana Republic and then went on to work with J Crew, Nautica, Mossimo and others before branching out with my own collection in 1999. mon petit oiseau was a women’s collection that sold to Barneys, Fred Segal and hundreds of boutiques

Morengo Hanging Planter

in the US, Japan and Europe. In 2007 my partner pulled out and I needed to close the business which was a rough decision. I continued to work in fashion, as I do now, on a consultancy basis. I honestly feel that once you have had your own business, it becomes something you are comfortable with and need to do. I was pretty happy working freelance as it allowed me to pursue my other loves: designing, making furniture and eventually designing and making the ceramic pieces. It was only when my friends started asking me if they could buy the ceramics that I once again started to think about getting back into running a business.  The experience of having the fashion business helped me define what I want to get out of my work, what I need to do to be creative and where I want my business to go.

Your fashion career allows you to pursue your pottery work without being financially dependent on the sales of your products. Do you feel this creative freedom has enhanced your business because it has allowed you to stay true to your vision as opposed to re-creating popular pieces to ensure sales? > Yes,

I do. Although my goal is to be self sustaining with the items I design long term. It makes it easier to build a business and take more risks when I have some income from consultancy work, which I love. It is so varied and keeps me connected to the fashion world.



Store-LA is a collaboration with architect Simon Storey. Tell us about some of the elements that allowed your friendship to grow into a successful artistic and business collaboration.

Can you discuss a few of the many ways your collaboration with Simon has enriched your career and encouraged your artistic vision to develop?

> We

> Simon

discovered early on that we really admired each other’s aesthetic. As time passed we would share ideas and techniques of manufacturing items. Simon has had more experience in developing prototypes and seeing an idea through, whereas I have more experience in marketing and selling. I originally sold my work on Etsy, but I was starting to develop an idea for my own site when I saw the work Simon was doing.  At that point he was developing pieces without a firm idea of how he would get them to market. I just thought his designs were brilliant and wanted people to see them; so I went over for tea and the whole idea for Store-LA started then. 



and I exchange regular emails that go back and forth with photos, plans and ideas. It was Simon’s idea for me to develop some ceramic pieces with the hand woven basket tops, which then led me to do basket wrapping on the pots. Eventually, I developed that technique into hand-tied lampshades. We have a very open line of communication and trust each other’s judgement. Having said that, we don’t work together every day, or even every week. We are both very independent personalities and I think we respect that about each other.  Simon and I come together to work on a collaborative projects, or we meet to show new ideas and share resources.

As an established artist, in what ways do you continue to evolve and challenge yourself to create innovative new pieces? > Both

Simon and I have concepts that then lead to other ideas and there is just not enough time to devote to all of them. We have to pull back, if anything, and allow the ideas to be fully realized and then move on to the next thing. The challenging thing for me is because so many of the pieces I design are handmade, as demand grows, it leaves me less time to design new items. That is why I am trying to balance the handmade products with more items that I can hand off to someone else to produce. I don’t want to lose my love of making by hand so it has to remain as part of my business. The challenge is just figuring out the balance.

Sexy Black Mini Pot

Dover Mini Hanging Pot

Do you feel that choosing to purchase products made by hand contributes to the well-being of our economy? If so, why? > I am

not sure that making items by hand contributes to the economy as we have known it, but I do feel that our economy is changing. Generally, I think people are sick of having garages full of old plastic stuff they don’t use any more and we are drowning in waste. Our parents’ generation would choose purchases more carefully and keep it for decades. This handmade niche market was hard to do even just a few years ago, as it was difficult to sell enough to financially sustain yourself. Today, the internet opens up new markets for the small manufacturer. Products have an easier way of being seen and purchased by like-minded people. In that way, artisans can survive and even thrive in this new economy and new business models can emerge. I don’t think it will create as much wealth to individuals, but it has the potential to support a decent living for more people and allow for more creativity.

Tracy Wilkinson TW Workshop/Store-LA



maker by nature

Architect Simon Storey is an expert on doing more with less. Just 15 feet wide, the modern home he designed is the perfect showroom for the innovative products he has created for Store-LA.




ou are originally from New Zealand: Can you share some of the elements of your upbringing that inspired you to pursue a career as an artist and designer?

New Zealand is so remote that DIY is a necessity. It lead me into working with my hands a lot and also coming up with creative solutions to ordinary things. This culture of creation naturally lead me into the practice of architecture and design. >

There is a lot of efficiency inherent in my house designs and honesty of materials. This too comes from the ethos of doing more with less.

Store-LA is a collaboration with fashion designer Tracy Wilkinson. Tell us about some of the elements that allowed your friendship to grow into a successful artistic and business collaboration. I think because we come from very different backgrounds that working together is complementary. We both have our independent experience and ideas and we can choose when to overlap these, and when to keep them separate. Everything on Store-LA is designed individually, although we are planning a few new products that will be more of a mix. >

Can you discuss a few of the many ways your collaboration with Tracy has enriched your career and encouraged your artistic vision to develop? It’s always nice to be exposed to how other people think and work. It is so easy to get caught up in your own modes of production and thinking so working with Tracy gives perspective. >

Can you elaborate on your career as an architect and tell us what role that experience plays in Store-LA? Architects are makers by nature and Store-LA is all about making. Tracy is very process oriented and is always coming up with new objects. Store-LA is really just an aggregation of all our different ideas made real. >

Your architecture career allows you to pursue your product design work without being financially dependent on the sales of your products. Do you feel this creative freedom has enhanced your business because it has allowed you to stay true to your vision as opposed to re-creating popular pieces to ensure sales? Yes, I always joke that no one is going to buy anything I make because I don’t have to be concerned with sales. Ironically the first thing I sold on Store-LA was a couch weighing a few hundred pounds that I had to ship to Kentucky! >

As an established artist, in what ways do you continue to evolve and challenge yourself to create innovative new pieces? Hard work. Long hours. There’s really no substitute for these two things that I have discovered yet. Also the work is always different so innovation is required constantly. >

The design for the Wow and Flutter speaker system originated with a trip to the thrift store. Can you share your moment of inspiration and how you turned an idea into an actual product? Yes, Wow and Flutter resulted from a trip to a local thrift store where there is piles of hi-fi equipment, literally a mountain of speakers. The design started with a similar jumble of stacked speakers, but I thought that was just a copy of what I had seen already. >

So the boxes then took on a more triangulated shape and became a figurative mountain of speakers. I love puns so this worked out in so many ways.

Wow & Flutter Loudspeaker

Golden State Lamp Shades

Dishwasher Safe Table

Grown Switch Lightswitch



Simon Storey Anonymous Architects



Advertise With Us Show Pony Magazine reaches a young, engaged, and inspired audience. We are interested in partnerships with businesses that share our values and encourage the aspirations of our readers. We look forward to hearing from you! If you would like to advertise, please contact us at







he process of opening a restaurant is often a complicated and daunting endeavor. As small business owners, what were some of the challenges you faced in the beginning stages of opening Antique Taco?

> Finding a location was the biggest challenge we faced.

We often thought, WOW this street or area has so many open storefronts, they must be excited a new business is looking to move in. We learned quickly that was not always the case. Most landlords want a Starbucks to open up in their space not an unknown taco joint. We had to go through the struggle and rejection to make the space we found so much sweeter.

What were some of the key factors in your ability to turn your dream of owning a restaurant into a reality? > Purchasing a non-refundable plane ticket had something to do

with it. We would talk endlessly about starting something on our own. Like most people we get stuck in our daily routine and for us it took something big to shake things up. We purchased one-way tickets to San Miguel, Mexico, gave our two weeks’ notice at work and started our journey toward independence. After we took an inspiration trip throughout Mexico and Europe, we settled back in Chicago with a clear vision of what we wanted. We would always ask, ”if not now, when?” It is so easy to push back your dream because roadblocks get in your way. The idea of independence kept us going. We wanted to be the bosses of our future.




You are located in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, an area filled with wonderful independent shops and restaurants. In what ways do the business owners in the neighborhood collaborate to support one another? > Wicker Park is such a unique neighborhood. We feel lucky to have found a location on

Milwaukee Avenue with so many creative people. The neighborhood greeted us with open arms. Emporium Arcade Bar has brought such a wonderful nightlife to this stretch of Milwaukee Avenue. We love working with the owners, Danny and Doug, on events. They don’t serve food and we don’t have arcade games so naturally we are always recommending each other to guests. The Emporium is also the only place we deliver to (for free). We are always doing trades with Tim, who opened Transit Tee’s across the street. Transit Tee’s does custom decals and signage, something Antique Taco is always in need of with our changing seasonal menu. Every time I have a design idea I walk over to Transit, and nine times out of ten the answer to “can you guys do this,” is yes.


One of your most exciting and innovative collaborations is your guest chef series for charity. Can you give us the details about this project? > Surrounded by so many great

restaurants in Chicago, we wanted to get other chef’s take on a taco. The “Guest Chef Taco” gets featured for a month and each sale benefits a selected charity. Allowing the chef to select their charity of choice makes it even more personal.

Rick, in addition to several classic Mexican dishes, your menu includes items such as Horchata Milkshakes, Rosemary Margaritas, Habanero Popcorn and a Marshmallow/Chocolate Pop Tart. What elements of your heritage and cultural experiences have most influenced your creativity?


> I grew up in an Italian and Irish neighborhood in Chicago. It was tough being the only

Hispanic kid in class so instinctively I tried to fit in. As I grew older I became more interested in how my family got here. I have always been drawn to using Mexican ingredients in nontraditional ways. At Antique Taco I wanted to blend the freshest available foods from the Midwest with my Mexican heritage. Our menu reflects my experience from every kitchen in which I have worked, my education from Kendall College and my travels abroad.



Ashley, you have stated, “When thinking of how to design Antique Taco, I knew incorporating antiques in the restaurant was a must.” What were some of your inspirations for the concept and design aesthetic of the property? > Designing Antique Taco was, and still is, so much fun. We

wanted the restaurant to be cozy, casual and creative. We have all looked at catalogues or magazines and thought, “this place looks fun.” We wanted our guests to feel like that when they walked in. People can get stuck in their ways thinking about what a taco joint should look like. This taco place looks different to some, but to us it looks just the way we wanted it to. Rick and Ashley, you are quoted as saying “Antique Taco is a combination of everything we love: flavorful food, antique style, and the comfort of home.” How have your respective talents combined to create a thriving business? > We always say to each other, “I could never do this

without you.” Rick sees the flavors in the food and I see the beauty. We like to divide and conquer, we know our strengths and over time have learned our weaknesses. Knowing we can’t do everything is a hard lesson to learn, but one we have accepted as we continue to grow our business and our brand. What have been the most rewarding aspects of owning your business? > Seeing an idea come to life. Growing a brand. Having people

take your ideas more seriously. Being around people at their happiest, eating with friends and family!

Antique Taco 1360 N. Milwaukee Ave Chicago, IL 60622 42






urniture designer Jason Lewis made his first pieces – bedside tables made from poplar and marble tiles – when he was a teenager. A hobby that began, in Lewis’ words, as “just messing around in my dad’s basement workshop,” has evolved into a thriving business. When he began experimenting in the workshop, he never considered the possibility of designing furniture as a way to make a living. “It never occurred to me that people did this kind of thing as a career,” Lewis remembers.   Lewis went on to earn a degree in economics, but found himself wanting to do something more physical and tangible. His search led him to seek out new ventures and he came upon the rare opportunity to apprentice at the Chicago Bauhaus Institute. The program was run by an accomplished woodworker named Berthold Schwaiger, now deceased, who taught his apprentices the furnituremaking knowledge he learned while progressing through the guild system in Germany. The apprenticeship program Schwaiger created

in Chicago offered a similar education and experience to those students who were genuinely interested in learning the art of making heirloom quality furniture. “Once I discovered the Chicago Bauhaus Institute offered to teach you to be a professional woodworker the idea really stuck with me,” says Lewis. In exchange for a tuition-free education, Lewis committed himself to working in Schwaiger’s studio for one year without a salary. The apprenticeship not only allowed Lewis to learn the flow of creating a piece from start to finish, but he also gained valuable experience in the business of working on client commissions.   Today, Jason Lewis runs a successful design studio. His stunning line of handmade modern furniture is highly sought after by architects, interior designers and prominent companies such as CB2. Lewis recalls, “After I finished the program it didn’t seem like much of a leap to just keep going.”

Please tell us about the early days of your business: How did you gain your early clients and what were your first commissioned pieces? I basically started out as simply and cheaply as possible. I was mostly building furniture for myself and the occasional charitable family member. After a while I moved into a new shop, which allowed me to share space and tools with other people. The space also had street level exposure so we built out the front as a display window and managed to get some clients that way.  I also started to get commissions through referrals and word of mouth. I was just taking on anything that came my way and trying to do good work for people. >

Black Walnut Bench





Every summer during Neocon, the worlds largest international trade fair, Morlen Sinoway Atelier hosts the Guerrilla Truck Show. The event set up is in a parking lot and offers creative individuals a temporary gallery space within the back of a moving truck. You participated in 2007, and were subsequently approached by Crate and Barrel. Can you describe that experience and tell us about your current design work for CB2? The director (at the time) of CB2 was at the show and saw the furniture I had at the event. She introduced herself and asked if I would be interested in doing some designs for the company.  So I started working with them: submitting designs, working through concepts, prototypes and trying to find things that would work with their aesthetic.  It was definitely a new experience for me and pretty different than the type of design and craftsmanship I had been doing up to that point.  However, it has been a really great ongoing relationship.  I have had a few pieces in the catalog over the last few years and a couple new designs coming up later this year, including a dining chair and a drop leaf table. >

In addition to design commissions by private clients, much of your design work is for commercial spaces. Can you elaborate on some of your recent projects and collaborations? Often the work for commercial spaces is not so much design work as it is fabrication. I am usually working with an architect or designer on the project and building something to their specifications. Although, even if you are working off of a drawing there are always visual and construction details to be worked out. >

I just finished some furniture pieces for the lobby of an apartment building, which is a beautiful old hotel that is being restored and modernized. I also have done a lot of production work for a local company called Icon Modern – tables and other furniture for retail and commercial clients – all built with wood from trees harvested in the Chicago area.

How has your collaboration with CB2 enhanced your career and influenced the evolution of your design aesthetic? I think the collaboration has obviously given me exposure that I wouldn’t otherwise have had, especially putting my name and designs in front of a wider audience. It has opened up the way I approach design and taken me out of the pure woodworking world. The manufacturing process and market are so different than my background, and it has really challenged me to approach designing furniture a different way. >

Tell us about the “Lewis Chair” incident. Do you have any advice for artists and designers concerned about their work being copied and sold? Last year I discovered that another furniture company was producing a copy of one of my chair designs, and they were even calling it the “Lewis Chair.”  I was actually able to get them to stop selling the chair because they were using my name. It would have been a lot harder to stop anything just based on the fact that they were copying the design. Legally, if there are enough little details different between the two chairs, then it is technically a different chair and not considered a copy.   >

The whole issue of protecting your designs is a tricky one for exactly that reason; a few little differences and you have a different product. This may not be the best approach, but honestly I don’t think about it too much. Most of my designs are not hugely original to begin with. I hope what sets my work apart is the execution, the detail and the level of craftsmanship. Those elements are harder to copy.   Issue Four – SHOW PONY MAGAZINE


Sideboard/Media Cabinet – Reclaimed Douglas fir and hand-shaped Corian door pulls.

Black Walnut Rocking Chair with solid wood frame and upholstered seat.

In your experience, have you found that large companies are shifting their values to include working with independent artists and sourcing material locally? I do see momentum in that direction, both as someone involved in design and just as a consumer.   You can see it with companies like CB2 and West Elm who are searching out smaller, independent designers or manufacturers. I have noticed the same companies are also really showcasing that connection as a part of their brand. >

There is also an increased appreciation and demand for material that is locally sourced or reclaimed, and definitely a lot more people working and building with it. I think people respond to not only the story of the elements as part of an effort to buy sustainably made products, but also just appreciate really beautiful materials.

Jason Lewis Furniture 346 N Justine #308 Chicago IL 60607 48


In 2012, furniture designer Jason Lewis discovered that another furniture company was producing a copy of one of his chair designs. Read about it on page 47.

Product Design + Intellectual Property Rights BY SCOTT BEACH The ever-increasing ability of applied artists and industrial designers to cost effectively design, produce and globally market their wares has led to an explosion of new products. Uniquely designed merchandise is now easily found for sale online from designers dedicated to lovingly producing superbly crafted items. For small business owners participating in this bourgeoning marketplace it’s important to determine what, if any, intellectual property rights you have in your new product designs. Intellectual property (IP) is simply a legal concept recognizing property rights in creations of the mind. Through IP law, owners are granted certain exclusive rights to a variety of intangible assets, such as musical, literary, and artistic works; discoveries and inventions; and words, phrases, symbols, and designs. Intellectual property rights include copyrights, patents, and commercial marks. Each of these IP categories is acquired differently and, if applicable to your product, then provides the owner with a specific bundle of legal rights.

Copyright Copyright protection gives the holder exclusive rights to copy the work, distribute the work, display the work, perform the work, and make derivative works. The copyrightability of industrial design, applied art, and fashion design products is one of the most confusing aspects of copyright law. The United States Copyright Act provides that copyright protection exists in original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression. It then lists categories of “works of authorship,” which includes “pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works” (“PGS works”). So, PGS works are eligible for copyright protection. But, what are PGS works? The Act defines PGS works in two parts. The first part lists the types of works that fall within the category, including “two-dimensional and three-dimensional works of fine, graphic, and applied art…” The second part of the statutory definition states that “works of artistic craftsmanship” will be considered PGS works (and, thus, copyright eligible)

Scott Beach is a writer and consultant who specializes in public policy issues that effect small business owners.

only “insofar as their form but not their mechanical or utilitarian aspects are concerned.” And it continues, “the design of a useful article” will only be considered a PGS work if its PGS features are identifiable “separately from, and are capable of existing independently of, the utilitarian aspects of the article.” A useful article is “an article having an intrinsic utilitarian function that is not merely to portray the appearance of the article or to convey information.” They’re any design product where its inherent function is utilitarian. Examples of useful articles include bicycle racks, lighting fixtures, furniture, board games, household appliances, dinnerware, work tools, clothing, and belt buckles. You get the idea…basically most things that industrial and fashion designers create. Since useful articles are not eligible for copyright protection as a matter of law, designers are often left with little recourse under copyright when someone else usurps their work. However, the Copyright Act does allow for the possibility of partial copyright Issue Four – SHOW PONY MAGAZINE


protection of your product designs. It’s the above statutory language excluding wholly useful articles from PGS status (and, thus, copyright eligibility) that also gives rise to something called the separability doctrine. The separability doctrine is the legal grey area where protectable PGS works and unprotectable useful articles meet. For products caught in this grey area, the availability of partial copyright protection turns on the separability doctrine. A determination of separability, either physical or conceptual, is a prerequisite to copyright protection for the design of a useful article. In fact, courts have applied the separability doctrine to the designs of countless everyday objects – from furniture to lighting fixtures to shoes to mannequin heads – to determine whether the design features of an otherwise ineligible useful article may themselves qualify as copyright protectable PGS works. Confusing, right? Well, basically, industrial design, applied art, and fashion design products require a three-step sequential analysis for courts (and you) to determine whether a product is copyrightable. First, as a threshold matter, the court determines if the product satisfies the first part of the definition of a PGS work. Second, if it does, it’s potentially copyright eligible and the court must therefore determine whether the product also meets the definition of a useful article. Third, if the product is a useful article, the court must determine if the product satisfies the second part of the PGS works definition – the separability requirement – by analyzing whether the PGS features of the product are identifiable separately from and capable of existing independently of the utilitarian aspects of the overall product. If the product satisfies all three of these inquiries, its nonutilitarian features can receive copyright protection. The utilitarian aspects of the product, however, will not receive copyright protection. A simple example is a wood chair with an ornate sculpture on its back panel. The chair meets the first part of the PGS work definition, as it’s a three-dimensional work of applied art. But, a chair is obviously also a useful article because its inherent function 50


is utilitarian. The overall design of the chair then is not copyrightable. However, if the court determines that the separability doctrine applies to the ornate sculpture then that feature is copyrightable. If we are to presume that it’s this unique sculpture work that attracts the designer’s customers, then just being able to prevent others from copying the sculpture alone is obviously advantageous. Be aware that the separability doctrine is not a panacea. “Owl Girl,” created by artist Alison Frey, uses Asserting copyright over vintage materials and organic dyes to create a product’s constituent her one-of-a-kind dolls and furniture. parts is not as easy as it sounds. This is because it’s not only a confusing legal concept, it’s sketches related to your product all qualify also a confused area of the law. Since the for copyright protection even if the physical Copyright Act passed in 1976, the thirteen product itself does not. Building brand circuits of the U.S. court of appeals system awareness using these copyrightable have created about five different legal tests materials will build consumer associations to determine if a design feature meets the between your product’s design and your separability doctrine standard. The result is company that competitors cannot then copy. that a design feature meeting the standard for separability in one appellate circuit may not meet the standard for separability in Patents – Utility Patents another appellate circuit that has adopted a & Design Patents different test. Until the law is changed or the Industrial and fashion design products may Supreme Court decides which separability qualify for protection under federal patent test applies nationally (in March of this year law regardless of whether or not they are the Supreme Court, in fact, refused to hear utilitarian in nature. A patent is a government a case that may have resolved this conflict), authorization to an individual or organization there’s no universal answer I can give you conferring an exclusive title or right to make, to ensure the more artistic features of your use, or sell some creation. Patents can designs are protected. It’s best to seek legal protect the utilitarian (utility patents) and counsel in the area you do business. design (design patents) aspects of products, so long as both are new and nonobvious.  Even though most industrial and fashion But, patents require a considerable cost design products themselves are not and time investment. Unlike copyrights, copyrightable, copyright law can still provide which are not required to be filed with the some help. Creating supporting peripheral government, patents must be applied for materials for your products can help and granted by the United States Patent and stifle competitors. Manuals, photographs, Trademark Office (USPTO). promotional material, packaging, and

Utility patents, which protect functional inventions, can cost many thousands of dollars in attorney fees plus additional fees to the USPTO.  Also, utility patents typically take several years from the initial application date to final grant. The time investment is most relevant when compared to the commercial life cycle of a product, as utility patents remain enforceable for 20 years from the date an application is filed. Although the functional aspects of designs are less prone to be overwhelmed by trends than are the ornamental aspects, you need to decide if your product will have a commercial lifespan long enough to justify the cost and time required to obtain a utility patent. Design patents are intended to cover purely decorative and nonfunctional aspects of a product. Design patent protection is used for products across a wide range of industries, from the design of dinnerware and pharmaceuticals, to the design of fashion items and electronics. Like copyright protection, design patent protection is not available for functional aspects of a product’s design. Compared to other forms of IP protection, design patents are shortlived as they last for only 14 years. But since they do not require a product to be in use, design patents can provide valuable protection while a company is developing the product and working to establish market awareness. Unlike non-patent forms of IP, there is no requirement to establish “acquired distinctiveness” for a design patent. Rather, the subject matter of a design patent, like that of a utility patent, must be novel and nonobvious. A design patent will be invalidated if the design is not new, or if the claimed design would have been obvious to a designer of ordinary skill in the field at the time the design was made. Design patents do cost less than utility patents to establish.  However, due to the limited scope of protection designers may have to file for many design patents in order to prevent imitations, and the fees start to add up quickly. Design patents must be applied for within one year of the public offering or sale of a product or you’re barred from seeking design patent protection.

If granted, a design patent owner can prevent others from using a design when an ordinary observer, familiar with the patented design, would be deceived into thinking that the accused design was the same as the patented design. Thus, another designer may avoid infringing the patent by making small variations to the design. Also, you can’t prevent others from using your patented ornamental design on a product that is unrelated to your original one. You can only prevent others from making the same or a similar product adorned with the same or similar styling or decoration.

Commercial Marks – Trade Dress A third form of IP protection potentially helpful to product designers is called trade dress, which is a type of commercial mark. Trade dress is a product’s overall look that functions like a traditional trademark. In other words, once the overall visual impression of your product becomes so distinctive as to create an association between that image and your business it becomes protectable. Trade dress protection can be for a product’s entire design – as with the registered design of a Coke bottle – or an aspect of the design. Trade dress protection offers the longest-lasting IP protection, but is usually the most difficult to establish. Under federal law, trade dress entitled to protection must be non-functional and distinctive. Distinctive products have a clearly articulated design or combination of elements (like shape, color and pattern) that has acquired distinctiveness through secondary meaning so that consumers identify a product’s trade dress with a particular business. Courts consider numerous factors to determine whether a design has acquired distinctiveness, including how long the design has been used, efforts to promote a connection between the design and the business offering the product, and purchasers’ association of the design with a specific company. It generally requires substantial time and publicity for a business to establish that its product design has acquired distinctiveness. Like a trademark, trade

dress can be federally registered, but is not required to be to establish protection. If trade dress is established, though, it allows your business to prevent others from imitating your product design in a way likely to cause confusion amongst consumers. So, enforcing a trade dress complaint requires a designer to prove that its product’s design is non-functional and distinctive (establish trade dress), and that consumers are likely to confuse the alleged infringer’s product for that of the designer. Typical challenges to asserting a trade dress complaint pertain to how the design is defined, whether it’s distinctive enough, and whether it has acquired association amongst consumers with a single company. Businesses interested in establishing and maximizing trade dress protection should carefully develop a marketing strategy that creates a strong association between the product design and the business even before a new product launches.

Conclusion As you can see, the scope of intellectual property protection for commercial products can be quite limited, and may not be available at all for many designs. But, given the variety of protection options available, there are creative strategies available to protect industrial design, applied art, and fashion design products. That protection will often require a combination of copyright, patent, and commercial mark for any given product. The earlier your business implements these strategies, the greater your chance of successfully protecting your novel products.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE SCOTT BEACH TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS, PLEASE CONTACT HIM AT SUBMIT@SHOWPONYMAG.COM Show Pony Magazine provides general information only. Show Pony Magazine does not guarantee the accuracy of this information. This is not legal advice. Show Pony Magazine is not responsible for any legal advice, information, or assistance that you may obtain by using the Show Pony website or magazine. You can only obtain legal advice from a lawyer. To contact a lawyer, use a referral system in your state. Issue Four – SHOW PONY MAGAZINE









Kate Costello, an artist based in Los Angeles, has the knack for activating a room. Her work can both draw attention to the physical attributes of a place as well as make a viewer conscious of his/her own body within it.  Her sculptural work can highlight our own bodily presence by directing (or preventing) our movement through a gallery, and as a consequence, inhibiting us from getting a close-up view of her drawings.  What I’ve noticed, though, is that this same awareness occurs when I look at a series of her photographs, exhibited first in 2011 at Wallspace Gallery in New York City, and later at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. These striking images present her studio as stage and her large-scale drawings as set. In the foreground, a nude model is poised in a position borrowed from classical painting. The final, perhaps intangible element, is the relationship between the model and artist, and that rapport is caught by the camera in the moment of image-making.   In 2012, some of the same images, without the models, were published in X-tra Magazine. The experience of viewing this group, called Set-Ups, is starkly different. As Kate prepares to make additional images for the series, I asked her to elaborate on how the figure first found its way into her work and how its presence changed her process. 


I remember years ago you mentioning to me that you had begun working with people in the studio and that was proving an interesting challenge. I’m wondering how you began to incorporate live bodies into your work? > I started working on these photo-

graphs in 2005 and they slowly unfolded over the next 6 years. It was a combination of things. I made a series of portrait bust sculptures that were based on archetypes or literary figures rather than likenesses, and began looking at other traditional veins of art to work with. I was also interested in finding a way to bring another person in to the work because I work in a pretty solitary way. Around this time I saw a big Rousseau show at the Tate that focused on how he was making these lush, jungle paintings, none of which was part of his experience but rather fantasies that he rendered in the paintings. It made me interested in inventing an image or a collage in one’s mind and then rendering it.  So there’s the backdrop, a drawing or painting that is an artwork of mine, there is the studio space, and there is a pose that is taken from another work of art – mostly late 19th/early 20th century paintings – and then there is the rapport between myself and the model which mimics the classic artist - muse relationship. I see these as roles for each model and I to play.

Historically speaking, women who modeled for these classical paintings often became intertwined with the artist’s personal lives. The title of the New York show, “Kiki & Me,” referred to a prominent model from the 20s.  > The title of the show is a good

shorthand for the series, referencing Kiki De Montparnasse who lived in Paris and worked as a model for a number of artists and was an artist in her own right.  However, I became interested in that relationship before I started thinking about her. I was thinking about these paintings and about the relationships that the artists would develop with different women who would become part of their lives.  I feel it is important to develop a rapport with the women I am working with, and important for the photos that the nature of the relationship appear.  I aspired to attaining some glimmer of that.

I would assume that inviting a stranger into your studio and asking them to model nude would require trust on both sides. How did you achieve this? > When I began looking for models I

cast a wide net. However, over time, I came to realize it was important to me that they be women who worked as artist’s models. It made such a difference in the way they came into the room and took the pose. They already had a

conscientious approach to making an image with their body and participating in someone else’s project. I wanted everybody to think that it was an interesting situation to be in and to be comfortable with it. Desire is part of the conversation, a desire to participate in a particular type of image-making, rather than something that is titillating. I am trying to make images in which the women seem super present as themselves, and not as a place to project a fantasy. When we met I would ask them about themselves and how they got to live modeling. Each woman is involved in something else outside of modeling. One woman races motorcycles in the desert and several of them are actresses. One woman told me she finds it interesting to work with her body in different ways: to be active and leading with her emotions as an actress, and to be looked at and still as a model. I would tell them about my interests and work as an artist. That’s where I would want to meet them intellectually. It’s a strange kind of alchemy. 




You’ve described this process as a performance, which is time-based, and yet the final product is a photograph.  How do the elements come together in the moment of the shot? > I think of the photograph not as a

document but as a moment taken out of a long unfolding of time. After first meeting a model I would consider her: how she sat, what her natural body language was and how a pose would suit her. I would then imagine a backdrop that would work with the pose, and with her. Some of the images have more of a painterly quality, correspondences between the body and the background drawing, with the play of light and little moments like that.  In some of them the woman and backdrop are in different realms and some I tried to pull together visually. There are a few types of tension present in the photographs; one is in the different understandings between the space of a drawing and the space of a photograph of a body or person. You look at them differently; one involves distance the other elicits empathy.

Although the Set-Ups do not have a body present, the chair, stage, or space within the photo allows us to consider the possibility of it being inhabited. It is almost like a still-life that refuses to be static, and in turn, has more potential. 

I’d like to ask you about the size of the prints. Did you think about scale as compared to the viewer’s body?

> The Set-Ups photographs are kind

> Yes, it was a new and strange ex-

of notes, spaces in which I thought about the photograph before it happened. I would take the photos as tests to prepare myself; thinking about how I wanted the elements to come together and if there was something specific I wanted to talk about with the model while we were taking the photo. The process is similar to the way I think about the architectural sculptures that I make: identifying allowances of different spaces, working to create spaces that are places apart, leading the viewer back and between the space of a drawing and real space, creating spaces that are made for looking at images, spaces for contemplation, and fantasy spaces.

perience to decide the scale at the end of working with these images. I thought about printing them at a larger than life scale, a life - sized scale, or just a large format photograph. Ultimately, I returned to my initial idea for an intimate size.  I thought of relating it back to painting. Specifically, the size of painting that a painter might make for himself: a study,early, or quick version of a painting similar to the studies that I make in my sketchbooks

I also think the intimate size helps to convey a particular moment in time instead of a grandiose print that would lean more toward the momentus. > I also realized that I wanted them




to be something that the viewer really stepped up to. Looking at the photographs involved coming closer to them rather than standing way back.  It was important to me and vital to understanding the image as well.   To experience it as a whole, standing with it. > Exactly.




through the eyes of myles kwesi hutchful story by rebecca hill photography by myles kwesi hutchful



Man Smokes on Retro Vintage Cargo Bicycle Jaipur, Rajasthan, India

Myles Kwesi Hutchful began his career as an investment banker who spent his lunch hours taking photographs as a hobby. Today, he is an award-winning photographer and filmmaker who travels extensively for several projects and assignments. A multimedia artist dedicated to human rights, he shares what drives his commitment to tell the stories and empower the lives of the people he photographs.

You were born in Ghana and grew up in Canada. As a teenager, you returned to Ghana and discovered photography. Can you tell us how you began taking photos? > My love for photography developed

at an early age. I enjoyed observing photographers at work and the reaction of their subjects to the camera. My interest intensified during my years in high school, but I never picked up a camera. My high school, an international boarding school in Ghana, was very strict and did not permit the pursuit of any interests outside of the established school curriculum. But finally my moment came. I began shooting my first year in college when I received my first camera, the Canon AE- 1, as a birthday gift from my best friend. My first project, Cloud Cumulus, was a photo exhibition of clouds illuminated by black lights. I filled the whole big room, even the ceiling and the floor, with photos of cloud formations. The black lights created an illusion of floating in the clouds. It was fun and the show had a great turnout.

Safiya, a Sudanese refugee, stands in front of her makeshift home, Krisan Refugee Camp, Ghana

Your career began as an investment banker, however, you continued your love for photography by spending your lunch breaks and weekends with your camera.  What was the catalyst for turning your hobby into a career? > I started working as an investment

banker immediately after college. My plan was to go to law school after gaining a few years of working experience. I never considered photography as a career option. Photography was sacred. It was my escape from reality and I thought pursuing it as a career would take the sanctity out of it. While still working as a banker, I casually showed some of my work to a longtime friend, Jamie, who worked at Workbook Stock (now Jupiter Images). Impressed with my photography, she invited me to their office for an image licensing portfolio review. After several of my images were selected, I softly started exploring the idea of photography as a way of making a living.   It took me a few years to fully make the transition.  Ultimately, the catalyst for making the change was overcoming my fear of failure and fear of the unknown.

Documentary photography and filmmaking are generally not thought of as a lucrative profession. Can you tell us how you have balanced supporting yourself financially with your dedication to working with nonprofit organizations? > Documentary photography and

film are generally not seen as lucrative professions, but they can be quite fulfilling.  If making money is your only goal, then obviously you will need to consider other career options. To answer your question, I support myself by doing a diverse range of media assignments that utilize my photography and

cinematography skills as well as my analytical, research and project management skills. My company, InLight Studio, creates beautiful, captivating and effective media for individuals, corporations and non-profit organizations. We also provide research, media consulting and project management services to various clients on a variety of media projects. I have a deep passion for complex issues related to human rights and often try to secure assignments that fit within that context. These assignments are usually with nonprofit organizations. My personal philosophy is that every assignment should have an impact. It should challenge me and help me grow as an artist and as an individual. It also should convey something interesting, unique and meaningful to the viewer. When I’m not on assignment, I work on personal projects such as: The Bicycle Project, The Street Portrait Project, Doors & Windows, The 50mm Project and Hey! Freckle Face! all of which can be found on my photography website. Art collectors often purchase images from these collections.

Some of your work documents refugee communities and victims of conflict. How did you develop the ability to create genuine connections with this community, and establish the level of trust necessary to create portraits with authenticity? > Three words come to mind:

honesty, integrity and compassion. Refugee communities and victims of conflict have experienced a great deal of pain and trauma, and have also been exploited in many ways. Therefore, they must be treated with care, respect and compassion. It is important that they understand the significance of your passion, presence and purpose. If you believe



in what you are doing and are able to clearly communicate the benefit of your project, you will create a genuine connection and establish the trust necessary to create authentic work. It is also important to be firm but diplomatic and never allow yourself to be discouraged by those who don’t believe in your mission.

Please tell us about how you first became involved with the Krisan Refugee Camp and how did you initiate your collaboration with the UN? > A friend heard the UN office was

seeking a photographer to shoot a calendar of refugee portraits to auction for a fundraising event. The goal of the event was to raise funding and awareness for the refugees living in Ghana. At that point, I had redefined my portfolio with three little words: beautiful, unique and timeless.  This meant that any image retained in my collection, and all subsequent work, had to fit within the framework of those words. As I contemplated the refugee calendar project, I decided the idea of a calendar was a very ‘timed’ concept and conflicted with the word “timeless.”  What happens to a calendar when the year ends? I also wasn’t sure if a calendar was the best way to raise funding and awareness for the many refugees in Ghana. I respectfully declined the assignment, but offered them a recommendation for a photographer that would be a good fit for the project. That evening, I spent some time reading about refugee crises in different parts of the world and decided that this was a project that could have a huge impact. I called UNHCR the next morning and asked if they would be interested in a documentary film. I explained while calendars are good medium,



a documentary film would be a more compelling way to engage the audience’s interaction with the refugees by allowing them to see, feel and experience their pain and witness their hope. The UN agreed and we went into production.

In association with the United Nations Refugee Agency, you recently directed and produced a documentary film on the struggles of refugees living in Krisan Refugee Camp in Southwestern Ghana. Where does your interest in this subject matter originate from? > The interest originates from my

heart. The worst thing for me is becoming jaded and insensitive to the pain of others. I find it difficult to accept, as normal, any form of inequity or inequality.  I think most of us have an interest in creating a fair and better world that is free from unnecessary pain and suffering, but some of us take a more active approach than others. To take action, people need to be informed and aware of the issues. I take pride in bringing certain issues to light. Personally, I feel more alive when I know what I spend most of my time doing has an impact on the lives of others. 

Your film, Walking in Darkness features interviews with refugees in Southwestern Ghana as they share their memories of lost loved ones, and their struggles to survive after enduring rape, torture and near death experiences. How has documenting this difficult subject matter personally affected you and your view of the world?

Krisan Camp has refugees from over 13 countries so it is a boiling pot of tragic experiences and melting pot of cultures. Documenting such difficult subject matter challenges me as a filmmaker and helps to keep me in touch with reality. For me, it’s important to stay open and let the subject matter affect me on a deep emotional level. This allows me to create my best and most authentic work. Walking In Darkness sheds light on the far reaching effects of political disputes that lead to civil wars can affect many generations. I think it’s important for political leaders and citizens of every country to do whatever possible to avoid such disasters. Ultimately, the goal of Walking In Darkness is to get the word out to the public on the unique set of difficult challenges the refugees at Krisan Camp face in their struggle to survive. I also wanted to start a much needed conversation about the international refugee crises. During the last couple of years alone, we have seen a drastic increase in the number of refugees and asylum seekers worldwide as we watched violence unfold in Egypt, Libya, Syria and Iraq and Sudan. Many immigrants and citizens of these countries fled their homes for safer places. However, escaping conflict and violence is only the beginning of a refugee’s struggle for a better life. I hope Walking In Darkness motivates the viewer to take action and those with some resources to donate toward refugee causes.

> The material in Walking In

Darkness is difficult, intense and sometimes very painful. However, it’s very informative and important.

Woman takes a break on Maggi Kiosk Cape Coast Ghana

Nikia Phoenix, Hey! Freckle Face! Project, Los Angeles, California 64


After shooting the documentary, you started the Krisan Refugee Camp Foundation (“KRCF”) to assist the refugees with their daily needs. Why did you feel it was important to continue your relationship with this community? > It is very difficult to experience something like that and not

do something about it. Many of the refugees were initially not comfortable talking to me about their past experiences. It brought back a lot of pain for them. Many of them feel betrayed and abandoned by their home countries and the organizations that are supposed to aid them. I really worked hard to gain their trust.  I made a promise to them that their efforts would not go to waste. Starting the Krisan Refugee Camp Foundation was simply a fulfillment of that promise and a continuation of my passion for human rights. The foundation had its first fundraising event on World Refugee Day, June 20th of last year, in Venice, California. We were successful in raising awareness and donations for Krisan Refugee Camp. Last month, I personally delivered the donations to the camp. The majority vote was to buy rice and share it amongst the diverse community. The refugees were extremely grateful. We hope that we are able to raise more funds this year at our World Refugee Day event. The foundation’s website is

As a viewer, I feel that you have a deep reverence for the people you portray. What do you hope the viewer gains from knowing these people through your encounters? > I hope the viewer sees what I see in my subjects: their

strength, their vulnerability and their humanity. The mass media often portrays certain groups of people very negatively. I love challenging these stereotypes by offering the viewer a different perspective and point of view.

What have been the most challenging and rewarding aspects of creating your work thus far? > The most challenging and rewarding aspect of my work

thus far is the production of the documentary film, Walking In Darkness. The whole process was and continues to be mentally and emotionally challenging and exhausting. During filming, my assistant photographer and close friend, Joseph Chad Hill, contracted malaria and passed away shortly after he arrived in Los Angeles. Joe and I had been friends for 8 years and losing him was extremely painful. Before losing Joe, I was already emotionally exhausted from the stories of pain and trauma that the refugees had shared. However, it was also rewarding because it provided the refugees at Krisan Camp with an opportunity to share their stories with the international community. It was even more rewarding to see that they had not lost their hope and faith in humanity.

Myles Kwesi Hutchful Photographer & Filmmaker



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any creative talents dream of being “discovered” upon graduating college. Can you describe the events that lead to connecting with the Martha Stewart Craft Department.

> Right before graduation, The School of Visual Arts, holds a job fair for the graphic design majors.

I was hesitant to go to the job fair but decided “what the heck, why not?” I brought my book and a few little weird 3D things I made. A person with a Martha Stewart Omnimedia name tag approached me. I was skeptical, but she was very nice and gave me her contact info. The next day, she called me to set up an interview with the craft department. From there, I was in — part of the Martha world.

You began your career as a freelance artist for Martha Stewart Living. Can you share some of your job duties and how you collaborated as part of a creative team? > I was freelancing with the craft department at Martha

Stewart Living Magazine: assisting the full-time crafters, helping out on shoots and driving vans to photo shoot locations. At this point I was collaborating as much as I was just doing what I was told. I was just taking in any knowledge I could. I learned how magazine stories come together, what needed to be done for a photo shoot, what roll each team member played and the overall Martha Stewart aesthetic. It was a complete learning experience like any first job.



This freelance opportunity lead to developing craft projects for Martha’s television show, which lasted 7 seasons. How did working on the show enhance your career and challenge you to create innovate projects?

Many people envision crafting as a solitary endeavor. However, you were a member of a 13 person Art Department on the television show. Can you share your philosophy on successful creative collaboration?

> Martha Stewart’s show started the September after I

> The Martha Stewart art team was an amazing group of such

graduated college. I freelanced all summer and into the fall with the magazine and then got a call from the television show’s craft team. I interviewed with them and began to learn the ropes of a live daily TV show, which was very different from editorial work. I liked the fast pace, quick turnaround of projects and overall energy of television. Being part of an esteemed team at a young age was an amazing opportunity and challenged me to create the best work I was capable of.

talented people. Between Martha, the art director, set stylists, and the craft stylists, we were capable of handling any artistic endeavor. My favorite time of year was probably Halloween when we would do a huge set changeover and transform the studio into a different world. That’s when we really got to work as a full team and collaborate entirely. The key to me is that everyone gets along and is comfortable sharing their ideas with one another.





Can you tell us how you went from a behind-the-scenes team member to appearing on the television show? > Martha really felt her staff was talented and should take credit for what they were capable of. She would

say “you should do this with me” when I was reviewing the process of a craft project with her. Then I would create it with her on television. After my first appearance, the producers continued to schedule me to be on the show. Martha likes to teach and loves to learn so when I was on-air with her, it was natural to be showing her and the audience how a project was made.



In December 2012, you released an e-book/app, “Make Your Wedding: Inspiration, Planning, and DIY Projects,” which features 30 original DIY crafts and 20 video tutorials.

Can you please tell us about your upcoming projects and what you are currently working on?

I imagine that publishing a book filled with original content and video is a huge undertaking. What were some of the biggest challenges with creating this project?

small jewelry line inspired by loosely on pirates and memento mori. I’m hoping to launch the line summer 2013.

> A producer friend from Martha introduced me to the author

of the book and we partnered up to create it. I developed all the projects and Amy Nebens wrote all the copy and instructions. The biggest challenge was providing the reader with a diverse collection of projects including a variety of techniques. I wanted to illustrate for the bride-to-be the different ways she can add a handmade touch to her wedding, whether its through the invitation, the décor at the reception or even the little gift she can give to a bridesmaid. All the projects can be personalized and the techniques shown are informative for any person wanting to create handmade things.



> I am currently working on a number of things, one being a

I also volunteer at New York City’s first wildlife rehabilitation center, the Wild Bird Fund, and spend some of my time off working with the animals and the great team of people at the center. In addition, last summer I was the Art Director of a short film set in the 1950s. The film, Woo Woo, is screening this month in San Francisco. For the premiere this summer in New York, I’m working on a grouping of mixed media collages to go in the art show accompanying the viewing. For current happenings, you can check out my website,



As told to Rebecca Hill


y husband and I purchased our home in 2001. At the time, I owned a small marketing and public relations firm. Gardening was just a hobby back then; I didn’t really know anything about it and I had no professional experience. I never considered myself to be a farming person. I remember looking out the back window when we bought the house and seeing a jungle in the yard that was completely overgrown. After my husband and I cleared everything we saw this blank slate, and that’s when my brain starting spinning. However, we then realized we had a half acre of land that we didn’t know what to do with. I realized that maintaining and landscaping the property was going to be a financial burden, but it needed to get done. I wanted to find a way to make our property produce something to help make ends meets, so the land had to be self sufficient.

Growing flowers is truly my passion. I love everything about the process: selecting the varieties to grow, finding the seed and looking for perennials that have interesting blooms. Edible plants like Cardoons are more interesting to me for their flower.  Of course, I love food but my inspiration comes from imagining the shapes, colors and details that will emerge from the soil. When I look through seed catalogs to pick varieties of flowers to grow, in my mind’s eye, I’m usually putting bouquets together as I go. I visualize what certain flowers might look like together: pairing shades, forms and textures. Nature is a wonder of flowering branches and stems. I find joy in putting colors, textures and forms together; I enjoy nudging happiness.

Silver Lake Farms owner, Tara Kolla

Then a saw an issue of a Garden Design Magazine which featured Sue Keating, owner of Sweet Pea Gardens, who became my inspiration. She is based in Surry, Maine, and when I read her story I decided that I also wanted to grow Sweet Peas. In the spring of 2002 I put some seeds out and in March the first flower bloomed. That was the first time I smelled a sweet pea and I was completely hooked. I decided to go to Pierce College, (formerly known as Pierce School of Agriculture), to study botany, soil science, horticulture and landscape design. I knew I was not going to make a living just selling sweet peas, so originally I thought I would become a landscape designer. In 2004–after passing my inspection and obtaining my certification from the Department of Agriculture–I closed my public relations business. That year I officially opened Silver Lake Farms and went to market. I was at market for six years and then I got shut down. Thanks to some very cool people in Silverlake, including mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti, that the Food and Flowers Freedom Act came about. This legalized urban farming in residential zones, and put me back in business. We do everything by hand at the farm, which is currently made up of small growing grounds in residential neighborhoods. Luckily, generous homeowners Laura Gabbert and Andrew Avery heard about me and invited me to grow flowers on their property in Glassell Park. In exchange for growing on their property, we turned the weeds and compacted ground into rich, dark, organic soil in which we could grow flowers. Once the soil has been cultivated and the beds are ready, I take great pleasure in transplanting flower seedlings. For me, the transformation is the joy. Our arrangement includes me paying for the water and helping the owners maintain their property. In return, I am able to sell the flowers I grow on their land.



Silver Lake Farms grows only pesticide-free, completely natural flowers

Silver Lake Farms grows only pesticide-free, completely natural flowers

I currently sell my flowers at two farmers markets in Los Angeles: Silverlake on Saturdays and Hollywood on Sundays. The market manager for Hollywood is fantastic. Her name is Alexandra and she is very supportive of all the hard-working farmers at this and all SEE-LA organized farmers markets. Good market managers are few and far between. She is really a wonderful curator, which takes a really special set of skills. At the Hollywood Farmers Market my stand is between Sabrina of Sheer Rock Farms, who grows and artistically displays gorgeous greens; and on my other side is Deb of Drake Family Farms who sells artisanal goat cheese, again, beautifully displayed.  Both these ladies are wonderful and we have a great time working next to one another. As a market vendor, my style is unusual; my display is all about showcasing the art of the flower and its natural beauty. It is what draws customers to my stand – photographers too. People like to capture life and all that nature invites at the market. I am grateful to have loyal regular customers who like to spend time

at my market stand. Finding a moment of zen on the banks of a streaming crowd, they quietly select stems and blooms and arrange them together, occasionally asking me for input. Having these kind of relationships allows me to consider my customers when I pick seed.  I think to myself, “Anne would love that! Rachel loves pastel anemones!” I truly love that aspect of what I do. I arrange flowers into bouquets that my customers enjoy for a week, if not longer. First-time customers are amazed at how long my flowers last in the vase. There are tricks to extending vase life: making sure your stems are bare and clear of leaves, changing the water every day, keeping your vase out of direct sun, especially in a sunny window that traps heat. I also recommend putting a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in the water. Keeping your cut flowers away from ripening fruit is also a good idea. Ethylene gas, as much as it softens hard avocados, will cause cut flowers to expire faster. It is really important to me that people understand where their flowers come from and how they’re grown. As a small flower grower, I have found that I have a lot of educating to do. I have encountered a couple of flower shops who have told me their customers don’t care where their flowers originate from. However, my experience has taught me that if you give the customer a choice, I think they would choose to buy local and organic. Thus, one of the aspects that I have recently added to my business is the Seed to Ceremony program. Brides come to me with their wedding date and I tell them what flowers will be in season when they get married. A few months before the wedding we sow the seeds. Then the day before the wedding, the couple will return to harvest and cut their flowers. I think the moment before the wedding day it is helpful to calm your nerves, be in a peaceful environment and relax with your loved ones. We cut the flowers together and then I start designing their arrangements. Seed to Ceremony gives me the opportunity to work with people who believe in the farm to table movement, care about serving organic local food and also care about where their flowers come from – their wine as well! Issue Four – SHOW PONY MAGAZINE


Silver Lake Farms Tara Kolla






The day I arrived Ofr was bustling with activity; the shop was busy and the gallery was hosting a sale with items from local fashion designers. I was greeted by a group of stylish women sitting on the benches placed outside of the shop. They were enthusiastically inviting me to check out the sale, or at least I think they were. Although I don’t speak a word of French, I was warmly greeted by owner Alexandre Thumerelle who was eager to share the latest projects initiated by Ofr.


ocated on an unassuming street in the Marais area of Paris, Ofr (“pronounced “oh-eff-eehrrr”) is a bibliophile’s dream come true. Part concept store, part bookshop, the space is literally filled to the ceiling with independent fashion magazines, art books and limited edition accessories. The store’s eclectic mix of products is carefully curated by owners Alexandre and Marie Thumerelle. 80


A family-owned endeavor, this brother and sister duo have created much more than a shopping destination. Since opening its doors in 1995 Ofr has also offered a meeting place and support system for the creative community. The back of the shop doubles as an event and exhibition space for emerging artists; all of whom have signed and dated the wall leading back to the gallery. This small space also plays host to a huge amount of positive energy and a very welcoming vibe.

Thumerelle, along with his sister and Ofr co-owner Marie, regularly collaborate with artists and brands to publish limited edition books such as the sought-after Guide Paris. The yearly manual – filled with local favorites and original artwork – was sold out by the time I arrived. However, I was able to get a copy of their retrospective book On Fire, which represents their first 15 years of outstanding projects and publications. With so many notable aspects of their business to discuss, I was surprised when Thumerelle lead me outside to show me what he considered to be Ofr’s most significant contribution, the groups of friends gathered on the sidewalk. “This is the most important part of what we are doing here,” he said, “creating a community.”



Ofr. Bookshop, Librairie 20, rue Dupetit-Thouars (Carreau du Temple) 75003 Paris


Show Pony Magazine - Issue 4