Tuesday, January 29, 2008


This story, my story, keeps taking unexpected turns. Though at first they might have seemed to be for the worse... it is more of a close a door and take a wrecking ball and knock out a wall. Renovations of this scale take a little time, naturally. But this foundation is ready to support a brick shithouse.

letting go
letting go © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

This last week has been fairly packed. Friday I got a call from the art buyer in charge of the pending advertising usage of some of my work. After some digging and general struggling with how to price to not lose a job without cutting myself off at the knees in terms of putting a price to the creative effort, I gave them some pricing. I am still not going to name names until the deal is sealed, but the art buyer said she should hear back within a week. I am still tingly. To celebrate, I ran off to The Perogie Kitchen to fuel our now near-regular Art Bitch Night at Chez Shanners. After cooking up our two alarm grub, we set to task of watching movies in the background and working on our respective art projects in the fore.

presence © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Saturday my mom turned up to deliver a glass tabletop to cover The Shanner's elaborate photographic table concoction I shot her with the previous weekend. But first I drug mumsy to the Mercer Museum which I hadn't visited in almost two years.

tangle © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Hoping to wear her down a bit using the six stories worth of stair in the mammoth, frigid, cement castle, we headed down to make our delivery and get dinner with Shanners and roll back to her place to fuss over the chinchillas, bunns and Betty White. Tireless Maternal Maraughter has now developed an obsession with the furry ones and the Mexican joint down the street from Shannon's place.

stumble © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Ms. Beaver came round for a scantily clad turn 'round the abandoned Fort Washington property I visited a few weekends ago with Gwyn. I had decided it sounded like exactly the right place for a shoot she had been envisioning for us for weeks. That is, had it been 70˙ outside.

shrug © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

She wanted to build a 'lightly erotic narrative' basing the looks around a single piece of lingerie and supporting pieces inspired by Chloë Sevigny's collection for Opening Ceremony and Luella S/S 08. The lighting in the first location was the most cooperative, of course it was whilst it was still brightest out.

organgrinder © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

By the time we got to the oldest house, we were losing light and, on top on this, there were no window panes in the windows to keep out the crisp whipping breezes. Even I, fully clothed was feeling the chill. But all in all success. Capped by fish tacos. Before the end of the night, co-explorateur, Gwyn, had located another location rich with character and furnishings nearby. Another shoot is in the mix.

spanish moss
spanish moss © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Today I landed another editorial portrait assignment for another local magazine. And had people on etsy demanding construct reposts and special orders. And my chum, Joseph Robertson of LAB magazine fame has asked me to consider the constructs for inclusion in the 'collections' theme of the next issue of LAB. You can also see, in teensy tiny form, on the home page of Lifestyle Magazine under the Montgomery Issue tab, my recent cover shoot with artist Dane Tilghman. In one week I have managed to have a foot in fine art, advertising photography, editorial photography, fashion photography and stock photography.... Oh yeah, and graphic design, illustration, and I am judging a photography contest in a few weeks... making me something of a creative tarantula. Hopefully I can maintain my posturing with all these limbs sprawling.

chaise © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

dusk © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

color me

dammed © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

I just got some news of 99.9% certainty that my art might well be used for an ad campaign for a client that makes my design and color nerdiness rear up and beat its chest.






rump © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

But, y'know, totally don't want to jinx it.

I spent the day doing inventory and spreadsheets for my etsy revenues and shopping around for supplies so I can set up a 'proper shop' in my house to help streamline the process. Don't be shy! Stop by!

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Monday, January 21, 2008

shake it loose together

My subconscious has a terrible sense of humor. The more confidently I go forward and purge my waking life of the things holding me back, the more they just show up in my dreams, with faces and names, arguments and violence. Oh and today, Elton John.



Bennie and Jeeeeh heh yetttttttss....

Rattling around in my head at work, endlessly.

the rainforest
the rainforest © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

I've been exceptionally busy and learning all sorts of important life lessons like how much to not charge for shipping prints to other countries. My Etsy shop is doing some hot business, as well as me just straight up selling more prints to people. And I have had a hefty influx of people interested in using my work with dollar signs attached.

In this process of making the things I have at my disposal work better for me, I took a trip to see my first doctor to see if she could lend me some guidance on what to expect, in regards to my current condition. While her firsthand knowledge was completely useless, she led me to The Butcher. As horrifying as his name is, my new colorectal doctor surgeon is nothing short of miraculous. No, he wouldn't have done anything differently up to this point. Except maybe not treat me like a specimen, rather a real, feeling human being.

isthmus © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

But the next step of treatment will not involve any of the gruesome tightening and cutting that has been threatened up to this point because of something he recognized going on which would make said gruesomeness likely to basically ruin me for life. He sat by and listened to me, and questioned me thoroughly, and let me question him back until I had no qualms or confusion left. Not only that, but he said if I have any problems or pain he will get me into the office immediately. And he is only a 20 minute drive away. Doctor Butcher is my savior.

stairwell © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

This weekend, Shanners and I spent a good chunk of time plotting how we can take over Manayunk one step at a time. Over nearly two hours we walked down most every street and alley, tagging all the Bros with their sporting paraphenalia, their dogs and I cataloged the better stairways and façades. Which I immediately set to work on making a wall of... over the spacey backdrop of the film Blowup. This guy is the kind of photographer I want to be. Replete with roughhousing, vacuous models in loud 60s garb, grouchy beatniks too high to speak or move, and murders that we forget about shortly after we stumble upon the possibility of their existence. Shanners and I pizza'd and got our art on hardcore. I also laid her out on her kitchen table for a quickie photo session to do something I had been envisioning for some time. After an arm transplant and 7 consecutive episodes of Heroes, we finally had to collapse under the weight of our deep meaning and mint chocolate chip ice cream.

distant past
distant past © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

This morning I was asked to be a participant in a study conducted by a doctoral student in South Africa on 'Identity and Self Image on the Internet". He wants to examine my self portraits over a year and and discuss my feelings about them in tandem with what is going on with my life. I found myself wondering if I would be amongst a cross section of myspace whores and other self-absorbed riffraff. I'm not sure I can bring myself to say ok with any enthusiasm, especially with the complete lack of anonymity because of the subject matter.

Despite all of the things that seemed to be crumbling around me the last few months and weeks, right now, I feel relieved. I feel better. Not healed, but better and lighter and just about unstoppable. I have a lot of work I need to do, but right now I am ready for it. My hand is no longer strained, it is willing. Lately, I can't stop making things and dreaming up better things while I am awake.

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Wednesday, January 16, 2008


reflection © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

amber's grip
amber's grip © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

soundproof © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

evening news
evening news © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

french twist
french twist © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

awash © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

long rest
long rest © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

undertoe © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008

acknowledging the dark

tender as this
tender as this © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

The photographer needs light to carry on; without, we shoot a void. As a human being, I know there are things that exist only in the darkness, we can ignore because we cannot or do not want to see, or we can seek out so that we might know. I reached in and what I brought back with me, I can't erase it and the immense pain it comes with.

caning © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

I'm sitting on some years' worth of memories, most of which came from brighter times. Whenever I open my eyes I am reminded of this. In two days time I have lost so much. It is too soon to know what I have gained. Or what I can retrieve.

dappled © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

The words are going to be slow to return here to this blog. But I can't stop the photographer in me from looking for the light. So for now, just images.

butter © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

quack © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

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Friday, January 04, 2008

worn in

This is a new year? I beg to differ, I think someone has been out joy-riding in this one and there are scuffs and scratches all over it. I demand a refund.

Sitting in the Crapme pharmacy waiting to have my new antibiotic scrip filled, I stared at the stack of Valentine's candy that had started to accumulate. Reminding me that in barely over a month it has been a year since this whole hole fiasco cracked, lovingly open.

not a toy
not a toy © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

I am starting to emerge now from the deep gullet of the holidays to take stock. The more dreaded holy day was the Christmas portion, half for the bacon preface and half for my maternal confrontation epilogue. To help take the edge off (read: avoid the food missiles being launched at us) Mr. The D absconded with me for a visit to the Zerbe Township Rod & Gun Club.

gun club
gun club © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Strangely I felt slightly more healthy in a room filled with taxidermied mounts, plastered with NRA stickers than I did over Christmas Eve dinner. Beans. With bacon. Potatoes. With bacon. Chicken. Fried in bacon grease. Bacon. With bacon. For dessert, we ensconced ourselves in Heroes dvds and entered a foodless trance that lasted successfully until we packed our bags to head to Lancaster.

lilting delilah
lilting delilah © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Strangely it was actually a relief to get to my parent's house. No pressure to bestow glorious gifts on anyone. No pressure to eat until we collapsed under out own weight. And buckets of fresh, steamed broccoli. Hallelujah. And a steady stream of kitties to exercise with. And shockingly, no fights or dramatics.

driftwood © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Granted, the presence of my mother's former coworker and his family who do not speak much at all English created a certain level of weird awkwardness. But that discomfort was not pointed directly at me. And this made all the difference.

axis © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

The week that followed was wildly lacking in work and productivity, aside from the erection of my big fat etsy shop where I am selling prints! Where I have already sold a print! (thanks Kristen!) Where I would like to sell oodles more prints! Go! Go now!! Am thinking maybe a calendar?! Who knows!

The remaining days of 2007 we spent in the company of people who have taken their devotion to feline perfection to a near-religious level. Mr. D has embarked on a months-long reportage of cat fancier shows, as he himself is rather devoted to cats, he is seeking to photograph people who can eclipse his own, uh, fancy. And naturally their furry friends. And as long as I do not develop an physical (or mental) allergy to said friends, furry or otherwise, I am coming along.

knucklehead © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

At the risk of sounding like a crazy cat lady, I really do love cats. The vicodin is going to start talking right now. I have an enormous soft spot for fluffy cats. Especially Maine Coons. They are gigantic as far as domesticated cats go. Even though (from my reading) the closest thing to having a wild cat domesticated is probably a Bengal (evidently they were initially bred out with wild leopards), you see a Maine Coon stretched out full length and you really have to wonder if they weren't bred out with tigers rather than their namesake.

solar power
solar power © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

Our New Year plans brought us to Philly for a new year's eve par-tay at a terrifically swank penthouse apartment. The deck on top of the world looked down on the Kimmel Center and the finest chunk of the Philly skyline. Plus an amazing spread courtesy the foodie genius hostess and live entertainment, courtesy the guests playing Rock Band vigorously. Though there is little more entertaining than watching someone who has some pretty rampant OCD get hammered and tumble down stairs trying to pick up crumbs. No photos of that, sorry.

I do, however, have some photos from just before the holiday onslaught. Shanners and I played hooky one afternoon to frolic in Manayunk and the NoLibs in the rain with holiday shoppers. And in her bedroom thereafter.

Don't be dirty.

call of the mild
call of the mild © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

We hit up Mugshots Coffeehouse (the other location where Dust and I did not have work being shown), Art Star, and Chic Petique. At said Petique, crack-snack addicted sphynx cat, Mischa grappled with me until I fed her. Her purple SoftPaws no protection for my hands that still bear the marks. She also wore this giant bejeweled collar so I felt like I was fighting an old street woman for day old bagels. She did not want me to touch her. Clearly. She was the one doing all the touching.

mischa © Laura Kicey. All Rights Reserved.

The store was super-cute and the girl who worked their very nice and I must send photos over. I just wanted to tack these on for good measure, since I wouldn't want it to look like I've been sitting on my laurels for weeks. The weather is supposed to bounce from sub-zero to sixties in under three days, so hopefully I will have maybe one day off to play like its springtime and do some artful marketing to magazines while the design work is currently in sharp decline. And making me worry excessively.

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