Top 3 reasons the Spring 2014 call for entries is a month late. Or, why you should be in Baltimore on March 7th.

  1. I stumbled into a parallel universe and spent the last four weeks finding a way back.
  2. Gremlins in my computer had a month-long party and refused to post the call.
  3. What call for entries?

Actually, it was a deliberate choice to push this one back. Why, you ask? 

Three letters (or four words, if you prefer): SPE.

In case you haven't heard the news, we'll be giving a panel discussion at next week's national Society for Photographic Education conference. It's called Make, Stamp, Ship, Receive: Four Years with the Postcard Collective. We're scheduled for 1pm-2:45pm in Keys 3-4 on Friday; if you're attending the conference, come by and say "hello". We'll have lots of these fancy postcards (see below) for you to take home and/or send to friends colleagues, loved ones, or complete strangers.

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Now, what does all this have to do with the call for entries? Upon examination of our annual schedule, you'll notice that the call for Spring exchange entries typically ends on March 1st. Since our SPE panel is scheduled for March 7th, the folks in the audience would have to wait until May to enter. I don't know about you, but I'd likely forget about my excitement over the course of two months. Put simply, we wanted to provide SPE conference goers the opportunity to be considered for participation in the Spring 2014 exchange.

The exchange will still happen on May 1st.

Having said all that, go fill out our entry form for the Spring 2014 Exchange!

The Postman's Choice

Today, I received a postcard in "hommage à Ben Vautier." The piece was The Postman's Choice from Flux Year Box 2 and the man who sent it resides in Berlin. It was fitting because my most recent submission to the Postcard Collective comments on Mail Art subversion and it is a path I would like to continue to pursue. This post provides that inspiration.

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In "The Assault on Culture: Mail Art," Stuart Home writes: "Individual Fluxists also dreamed up methods of subverting the postal system and increasing the involvement of postal workers in their mailings. The best known example of this is the Ben Vautier postcard "The Postman's Choice" (1965). This was printed identically on both sides with lines ruled out for different addresses and space for a stamp. It was left to chance and the postal authorities to decide which of the two possible addresses it should be delivered to."

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It was easy to see why the post office delivered it to me due the location of the address on the card above. I feel badly that Jack Saunders was not able to participate in this action (or be a recipient) and I cannot help but think that should be remedied.

Daniel Marchand on the Cinematic Perspective, -32 Degrees & Involuntary Sculptures

Daniel Marchand is one of the of the Postcard Collective’s most ardent participants. His images exude a sense of calm in a harsh climate and beauty in destruction (whether it is natural or human made). He walks through the countryside and the cities, elevating the commonplace and shedding new light on what is easily overlooked. This fall, I quizzed Daniel on his extensive number of submissions and here is some insight to his creative process.

Jacinda Russell: So much of your work indicates walking and taking note of your surroundings. Sometimes I think you are a street photographer and other times, you photograph in the manner of Lee Friedlander (specifically his relationship to the landscape). Who are your influences?

Daniel Marchand: I have always been an avid walker. As a child, I walked to school every day, regardless of the weather, even during the most severe of snowstorms. When I visit new places, I walk to discover them. When I first visited Beirut just after the civil war in 1994, I walked back to my hotel (a one hour walk) after dinner at around midnight to get a better feel of the city. This may have been crazy, but I still have memories of what I saw then. So I guess walking has made me more aware of my environment and has in some way influenced how I see and by extension how I photograph. 

I could not however single out one photographer who would have had a marking influence on me. When I see a landscape, I cannot but think of Ansel Adams for the skies, but I am also very much drawn to the work of Ed Burtynsky. My landscape work is probably a mix of both styles.

Many viewers of my work have pointed out to me that there is a definite cinematic influence. This could be explained by the fact that I was attracted to cinema at a very young age. My first attempt at conceiving a scenario and starting to shoot at 18 was never completed when a close friend who was portraying the main character died in a tragic accident.