I jumped at the opportunity to do independent studies during my time at The Art Institutes. The following books were born out of the need to tell aspects of my story, events that shaped and molded me into who I am. The books combine photos and words to make for a rich reading/viewing experience. They serve as time capsules filled with memories. I am grateful for the chance to share them in their entirety for the first time online.
"We named the house THE UNDERGROUND. I treated it as a living thing. Always working to do what would bring people back. I wanted this place to pop into people's minds, for them to never forget." - excerpt from THE UNDERGROUND
This book documents my experience of living and running a party house in Downtown Milwaukee. From it's humble beginnings of just some friends attending to parties with over 300 guests, it was a wild and turbulent ride during my early 20's.
Throwing parties was a way to create living art. The murals that I painted on the basement walls, the costume themes, the drink names, the music playlist, and the mood set by the never failing court of THE UNDERGROUND - it was a living breathing visual parade. At every party, there was a camera that would float person to person. The camera acted as an all seeing eye, the most loyal guest, and captured all the debauchery that ensued in that house.
Being in your early 20's is a difficult time. One is expected to fly the coop and start becoming an adult. I think so many people this age come together and party to excess because they are trying to find where they belong. My friends, my crowd - that was my family and we all went through it together.
I thank my mentor, Connie Gage, for all of her guidance and help on this project. I also owe a thanks and a head nod to everyone who appears in this book, thanks for knowing how to throw down and bringing out the animal in me - it was needed.
This book is a collection of recipes that I created containing mostly raw ingredients. It came about after receiving so many requests for recipes after showing others food photography. I have always had a connection to plant based foods, especially vegetables. After becoming vegetarian at 12, I had to learn how to cook for myself. Over all those years, my style and taste has evolved but the appreciation for beautiful and natural food remains.
"There is a silence underneath me, memories sit nestled in stillness. I stand and wait to understand why I am captivated. This land is my land, it is not your land / and someday there will be someone saying that to me." - excerpt from THE FARM
I grew up on a farm in Mukwonago, WI. As an only child with no neighbors, the land was my playground and friend. I spent hours outside and the earth beneath me became such a part of me that I carry it with me wherever I go. Small farms disappear. I am the last of my family that held even a slight interest in farming, but I decided to take a different career path. So, the farm will go. It is a sad experience to watch your land sold off piece by piece, altered, and gas stations built. But, this is the evolution of that space that is currently happening. This book examines the emotions that I connect with my home of origin and how the removal of farmland can change a family.
Available for gallery exhibitions.
THE UNDERGROUND and THE FARM are accompanied with prints for gallery showings. If you are interested in showing either of these in a gallery setting, please contact me.