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A fine art photo series that imagines a future after fracking.

**UPDATE** JOHN OLSEN wants to collaborate on FRACTURE, so let's make this happen!


FRACTURE will be a fine art series of cinematic scenes and panoramic landscapes that imagines a future world altered by unregulated fracking. The series centers on a family and their experience living in this changed environment. While each image will make it’s own statement on environmental degradation, observed together these scenes will weave into an overall dialogue about our consumption of natural resources, and the resulting effect on the planet.

This series is not a documentary, or photojournalism - it is a fine art series, with an established storyboard - that will reference headlines and actual accounts of fracking related environmental issues. 
When completed Fracture will be a series of 10-12 powerful images that I will exhibit in order to raise further awareness and debate on this pressing issue.


Fracking is slang for Hydraulic Fracturing - a process of extracting natural gas and oil from deep shale rock beds (sometimes as deep as a mile beneath the earth) by forcing a fluid mixture of highly pressurized water, sand, and chemicals into tiny fissures in the shale - this causes larger fractures and allows natural gas to escape. The gas is then extracted along with the fluid mixture - thus creating millions of gallons of contaminated wastewater.

It is a controversial issue - supporters say there is a lot of money to be made and domestic gas to be extracted, but lots of people are worried (with good reason) about the environmental effects, as well as the vast amount of resources needed to complete the process. It has been a largely unregulated industry, with some serious side effects to health and the environment.

I encourage you to do your own research, but here is some basic info, and here is a whole lot more.


I'm Jessica Sladek, I am a freelance photographer and designer in Chicago, IL. I grew up in rural New York State, and have always been interested in environmental issues.

A lot of my work centers around our relationship with the environment, how we effect our landscapes, and in turn how they alter us.


Creating my imagery is really labor and cost-intensive - it is highly conceptualized, planned out, and the lighting is extremely detailed. I shoot on location, and need  a group of professionals to help make everything come together just right. 

It's involved, but it creates an impacting image.

For Fracture, we will be shooting on location for 5-6 days and need funding to rent lighting equipment, pay for travel, food, lodging, and provide a modest stipend for the crew (who will have turned down other paid freelancing gigs to work on this project). This is where I really need your help to complete this project.

We are currently looking for the right location to shoot this project...


The wonderful and super talented Kelly McKaig will be collaborating on this project with me. She will bring her sweet energy and attentive eye to help style this project just right. I am so excited to work with Kelly again!


To create thought-engaging imagery that can add to the fracking debate -images that will leave a lasting impression. With your help, we can create a stunning, searing look into a possible future if fracking continues on unregulated.


Really beautiful fine art imagery, as well as inclusion in the donor list. (If you wish to not be listed that is fine too!) Please check out the gifts and email if you have any questions.

Fracture Title Image : 11"x6" postcard for $35 Pledge
Fracture Title Image : 11"x6" postcard for $35 Pledge

** Pledge Level $1250 may also choose from the following existing images:

Encounters : The Pond
Encounters : The Pond
Encounters : The Dig
Encounters : The Dig
Encounters : The Fields
Encounters : The Fields

**NEW NOTE - Aug31st** : I want to clarify- this is a really complicated issue, but I personally would like to see fracking banned completely. It is an unsustainable method of obtaining energy, and a step in the wrong direction for clean energy. It ruins one resource to extract another (water for gas), and is federally unregulated. In the video, I say the project is about “unregulated fracking”. This is true, but doesn’t mean that I would be happy to simply see fracking regulated, ultimately I think it needs to end completely. I emphasize regulations because I am acknowledging that this practice won’t end overnight, and at the very LEAST we must have sound regulations. I want to create scenes that really awaken people to the serious problems that accompany fracking. In the end of the video, I say “fracking isn’t going away”. This is not my hope - I definitely want it to end - this is why I am devoting my time and energy to this project. I strongly believe the images we create will help raise awareness. But fracking IS happening; and it is currently unregulated. Ultimately, I hope that we can work to ban fracking completely.

Video Music Credit : "Le Songe d'Hacolhi" by Sunhiilow

Hydraulic Fracturing Diagram Courtesy of Scientific American Magazine


Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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  • Pledge $10 or more
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    28 backers

    You'll receive a beautiful digital booklet of the final project, designed by the artist. In addition, you'll be listed as a donor on artist's website, in the project book, and in future exhibition. (You may opt out of donor list if you wish) Lots and lots of gratitude is coming your way...

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  • Pledge $35 or more
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    12 backers

    You'll receive the Fracture Series Title Image as a lovely, 11"x6" postcard - signed by the artist. Reward #1 is also yours to enjoy. (Please add $4 for International Shipping)

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    9 backers

    Packet of 6 11"x6" postcards from the final project. These are large, glossy, gorgeous postcards! Reward #1 included. (Please add $15 for International Shipping)

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    7 backers

    Softcover BOOK of the project, specially designed by the artist, including behind the scenes imagery, notes from the artist, storyboards, AND the final project images. Reward #1 included. (Please add $20 for International Shipping)

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    2 backers Limited (3 left of 5)

    Limited Edition 19x13" Archival Fine Art Print made and signed by Artist. Your choice of image from the series. Reward #1 Included. (Please add $20 for International Shipping)

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    2 backers

    Boxed Set of 5 19x13" archival prints from the series - printed & signed by the artist, with a handwritten note of thanks. Reward #1 included. (Please add $20 for International Shipping)

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    0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)

    Limited Edition 24x16" archival museum quality print of your choice from final series, along with a handwritten note of thanks from the artist. You may also choose existing image (see choices in project description) Reward #1 included. (Please add $40 for International Shipping)

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    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    REALLY?! WOW! Reward #7 &#1 is yours PLUS come spend a day or two on set with us - we will fly you to our shooting location and take good care of you while you get to watch our shoot in action. YOU ARE AMAZING!

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Funding period

- (30 days)