Composites from the time of COVID19

7 April 2020

Work published in Issue 01 of Quarantzine: Click Here

Check out my Zine, Egg

24 March 2020
Egg features all these awesome COVID-19 related illustrations in a super awesome Zine format. Why Zine? Hey, why not… and it is a bit more fun than using a copier : )

We are experiencing a pandemic of epic proportions. Life has changed for all people- from the self-quarantine to the run on toilet paper. Viruses are particularly repulsive in that they attack cells and inject viral DNA- turning the cell into a breeding ground of the virus (ick). Viruses are also beautiful in an organic, almost flower-like way. Seeing the global spread in real-time, or near- real time was scary, and as a healthcare worker, I was very worried about how we would take care of all the sick people if the virus continued to spread unchecked. I was more concerned that the government was not moving fast enough to prevent the spread of the disease, and most concerned about people who didn’t think that this pandemic was a big deal. My images change over time as my feelings toward the pandemic changed. My first composite image is below, when I felt like the pandemic was going spread with the force of an atomic bomb. My last images were more hopeful as the strategy to best manage COVID19 developed. The big wave of sick patients which was predicted for my area did not occur, and, as a healthcare professional, I feel more confident about our future.

21 May 2020
Coronavirus capers:

Week 6-7 Peer commissioned micro-project: Psycho-Anatidae

For week 6-7, I had the opportunity to assign- and be assigned- a micro-project to complete this week by my classmate. I assigned my classmate the exercise of creating a psycho-geography around her home. Interestingly, she assigned me the same thing, however, with a creative twist: to follow my poultry exploring the world as they do.

What is a psycho-geography?

In Situationist Guy Dubord‘s 1955 essay Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography, he defined psychogeography as “the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behaviour of individuals.” Put simply, psychogeography is the exploration of the psychological effects of an urban environment.

Ridgway, M. (2014). An introduction to psycho-geography. The Double negative. Accessed:

The term “psycho-geography” does not apply to my assignment if I use the definition listed above. It seems to me that the rural landscape preceded the urban, therefore, the term should apply to exploring the countryside as well. I searched the term “rural psycho-geography” and found a book called Almias by Phil Legard, Layla Smith and Simon Bradley. It’s a wonderful read which describes the geography, history and mystery of Almscliff, a craggy outcrop in Yorkshire, UK. It is illustrated with creative photographs of the rocks and the immediate countryside.

What is a rural psycho-geography?

Legard, Smith and Bradley (2010) state that “The idea that psychogeography can apply to an environment which is not ‘consciously organised’ suggests that that, as with mundane geography, psychogeography can present broader arenas for exploration than solely urban space. As a discipline,geography itself is not solely about the urban, but also suggests further‘pleasingly vague’ branches of art and science  such as psychogeology , psychometeorology, psycho-  politics , and so on.

Legard, P., Smith, L., Bradley, S. (2010). Almias: Rural Psychogeography. accessed:

Pleasing vague branches or art and science seem like an invitation to a creative challenge, to me. My classmate related that she had had a bad experience with a mean goose and is, subsequently, afraid of geese. Most people that know I have geese relate that the geese (or chickens, ducks or other animals) are scary (mean, aggressive, terrible, etc). I haven’t had that experience. To me these critters are (mostly) delightful. They are my outdoor environment, my psycho-geography.

To better describe this phenomenon, I would like to propose a new term, psycho-Anatidae, which, after Guy Dubords essay would be “the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of an individual. Or, as Ridgway adds, the “exploration of the psychological effects of an [Anatidae] environment”. The Anatidae family comprises of over 40 sub-families of birds, include geese and ducks. The Anatidae environment, in my back yard, includes the trees, brook, grass, woods… and other Anatidae.

As this micro-project assignment was for me to record the (geography of) psycho-Anatidae (which I argue contains other Anatids), I dutifully followed my geese and ducks and recorded them from their (low) point of view. However, displaying these photos might be problematic as they could prompt feelings of discomfort with the subject matter (for the goose-phobic). I would like to display my work AND promote Anatids as lovely, approachable creatures. I created an alternative display mode and media:

Psycho-AnatidaeDecor ™

Longing for the poultry-farm experience? Afraid of live animals?
Psycho-AnatidaeDecor ™  bring a positive poultry milieu to your home: These soft and durable Bekkie ™ Throw Pillows are adorned with cheerful depictions of your favorite Anatidae. Colorful Bekkie ™ Throw Pillows portray the soft and cuddly side of the Anatidae, and make a perfect gift for the goose-phobic in your family. Bekkie ™ Throw Pillows are made from organic cotton, filled with 100% fair-trade kapok and are made in the USA. Text me for more details!

Micro-project: Macro exploration

I experimented with a new, inexpensive 22 mm hyper-macro lens, taking dozens of shots of my hanging plant basket. This hyper-macro has a 4-4.5x magnification, revealing incredible, otherwise invisible, details.

Incredible detail

Lessons which I learned using this lens for an hour: Working with a hyper-macro is a lot like working with a microscope- small camera movements seem very large within the visual field. Shooting at f2.8 changes the depth of field into a narrow band, perhaps only millimeters wide. This lens needs a lot of light, or a high ISO. Additionally, the lens requires very close proximity to the subject. I am enchanted by the secret world of these flowering baskets, and created a mini photo book, which I think would make an excellent gift for someone.

Big little accordion book, front
Big little accordion book, back

Micro project: “I’m Afraid of Americans”. July 4th Edition.

Micro-project: I challenged myself to try to capture the essence of families enjoying the 4th of July, American Independence Day, at a local lake. I am using the photo app, Hipstamatic, as a method of creating the sense of vintage sensibility. The title, “I’m afraid of Americans” is a song by David Bowie which captures a bit how I feel about going to my local lake. Although I live in a small town, I really don’t know anyone. So,

I’m afraid of Americans
I’m afraid of the world
I’m afraid I can’t help it
I’m afraid I can’t . David Bowie. 1997.I’m Afraid of Americans.

The Big Drink Line-up.