PROJECT: "Time is a Tree" is a photographic documentation of a portion of the creative community in Portland, Oregon (circa 1990 - 2010). There is a wide range of disciplines represented including; artists, writers, film makers, curators and musicians. Many of these people have made a significant contribution to the community through their work. It is in no way comprehensive as it is simply a collection of some of the people I happen to have been exposed to, worked with, and admired. I couldn't possibly photograph every talented artist and musician in town. Not even all the ones I have met and like. So, it is a very subjective selection and I am limiting it to approximately 100 portraits with an emphasis on people in the visual arts community. Maybe more than 100, I will do as many as I can before the November deadline. The photographs are all taken at approximately the same distance and are cropped to a square format to provide a visually cohesive collection. I have about 40 successful portraits so far.
In 2009, I began to photograph some of these talented people standing next to trees. Why trees? Because trees are amazing too. They help us breathe and provide shade and beauty and homes for birds and animals. This project documents a moment in time. These trees are growing along with us. The artist and I choose the tree together. Maybe they have one in mind, or we just walk around until we find a good one (which usually doesn't take long). Already, people involved have told me that this project made them look around and notice trees more.
Some of the local luminaries that are already photographed are Colin Meloy of the Decemberists, illustrator/artist Carson Ellis; novelist Jon Raymond; visual artists Harrell Fletcher and Malia Jensen; DJ, artist and musician E*Rock; film maker Matt McCormick, artist and curators Kristan Kennedy and Modou Dieng, and so many more. I plan to ask two people to write introductions for this book: One who knows about Portland's trees and one who knows about Portland's creative community.
BOOK: Greener Printer in Berkeley is a great, environmentally friendly printer which I will use to do a small self-published run. My computer recently died and I need one to work on this and many other projects. I need it to work on the digital photos and to create the book template. At the moment, kick starter is my only hope. The first $1,200 would go towards purchasing the computer. After that, all the funds would go towards printing a small run of the book. 300 copies of a 5.5 by 8.5 sized full color, paperback book will cost $3,500. The print run could be greater depending on how much is raised. The first 100 books will go to the artists represented. Many of the remaining ones would go to you, the kickstarter pledgers. (I hope)
SHOW: I have not secured a place for the show yet but am looking into possibilities. The show will hopefully take place in Portland during the winter following the completion of shooting. The opening night party will be a chance for everyone to come and celebrate together. My deadline to finish shooting for the project is November. (This will provide for more spring, summer and fall foliage.) The book can then be sent immediately to the printer as I will be designing it in the meantime. If there is no show, I will have a book release somewhere so there will be a social resolution to the project.
Please help me document this important time in Portland's creative and tree communities.
All pledges of $25 or more will get you a copy of the catalog from the 2010 show If I Could Crowd All My Souls Into That Mountain plus a photograph.
All pledges of $50 or more will get you a signed limited edition book plus those other two things.
**International backers, please add $8 for postage. All pledge awards include email updates on the project, an invitation to the opening of the show and/or book release and my eternal gratitude. Thank you so much!
time is a tree - this life, one leaf - but love is the sky - and I am for you - just so long and long enough
-EE Cummings (as freedom is a breakfastfood)
Will there ever be a tree - Grown from the seeds I've sown - Life is a path lit only by the light of those I've loved
-Tom Waits (Jayne’s Blue Wish)