Ghosties exist in a day’s afterlight, the shuttered rooms of houses.
They are the results of creative explorations across methods and materials.
I was looking to contrast the angles and 'math' of the Rabbitboxes with something more organic, and wanted to juxtapose the high concept companionship dispensers with a simpler idea, something more directly emotional.
So… ghosts: universal symbols of death and the unknown after. There must be so many floating around this world. And like the people they used to be, each completely unique in the universe. This is the idea of Ghosties. A variety of mediums and styles evoke the infinite number of personalities that have once walked this earth.
Stand-ins for lost memories and the people who inhabit them.
As humans, we share the experience of loss. Regardless of our differences we have commonality in the crushing reality of losing a loved one. We also share the immense unknowable-ness of what we lose them to… that impenetrable wall, the actual final frontier. There's no way to address something this immense. We can only speculate and pontificate and mostly hope that in some impossible way we will see those people again.
This project is a small way to remember them and the other once-loved souls drifting along the planes of existence.
As totems for ones we’ve lost, something to hold on to.
In process, the Ghosties' amorphous, shifting appearance allow me to let my mind wander and instinct take over.
Pencil, ink, watercolor crayon, acrylics, resin, clay, epoxy, and various plastics have all made their way across my work table. I use these materials on any kind of substrate that will hold pigment: cardboard, outdated psychology textbook paper, small stones etc. Then they get scanned or photographed and additional work is done on the computer.
Letters make words.
This same spirit of exploration holds true for the hand-drawn type. I’ve always enjoyed drawing scratchy letters and they seemed to fit for this project; like something you’d see scrawled along the baseboard of a dark, empty house.
The words used are a combination of original phrases and “found stanzas”: lines from (mostly) songs, tv shows and other pop culture, extracted from their original context and repurposed to convey a darker tone. While it would be easy enough to attribute them to their authors, part of the fun is the mystery (and of course the answers are just a internet search away.)
In addition to using the above to manipulate physical work and create new illustrations and type, I'm able to combine various elements of my work in (hopefully) exciting ways. A perfect example is Virtual Graffiti: street art without the property damage!
There are currently two sculpts of Ghosties:
Version One (two eyes) are the result of my adventures in sculpting, mold-making and resin casting. Each has unique traits: irregularities and mistakes were treated as starting points for characterizations. This was based in pragmatism: I didn't want to let a casting go to waste! Most are made of resin, though some were cast in plastic . Some are varying degrees of translucent while others are fully painted. Dyes and glow-in-the-dark additives we also used. No two are the same.
Mini Mono Ghosties are the second entry into the Ghosties world. These were an exploration of the manufacturing process and were created digitally and produced by the folks at Made by Cooper. They are clear resin with hand-painted eye and mouth, floating in at just under 1.5" tall. A limited number were produced, along with even more limited, hand-finished special editions.