This is a nice map, a good map, my father’s map… It’s the map that guided me from that bottomless Sparta-pit in the United States known as Wyoming all the way to Georgia. If you look closely, audience, you can even still see the highlighted trail my father made for me because he understands that I can even get lost in the shower if I keep my eyes closed too long.
__Mission 1: Take the map… destroy the hell out of it. _
Aye, aye! Mission was a go for me the instant these rather simple instructions were given. You know, I thought it was too much in the beginning, but I do thoroughly enjoy the freedom of this class. So, I suppose, the question now is… what didn’t I do to this map (don’ttellmyfather)?
I had a strategic list started that I was planning to scan n’ share, but it was KIA the moment I arrived at the step involving my shredder; it decided it was going to be greedy and consume way more of my map than I wanted it to. I was upset, to say the least (doesn’t take much, does it?), and crumbled my list into a ball and threw it away before proceeding to throw a hissy fit. What I do remember from the Map Destruction Process is:
- Ran it over… then backed up and did it again
- Sat on it
- Stepped on it
- Stabbed it
- Tried to get my cats to scratch it (ineffective, even with the aid of catnip)
- Spilled soy sauce on it (unintentional, that was my fiancé’s doing — and it was stinky)
- Burned it
- Shredded it… (I type this with grit teeth)
Then, since it was an option, I tried to put the whooole thing back together again. But not with just tape, oh no. Puh-lease. I used everything from toothpaste and safety pins to bubblegum and band-aids (Hello Kitty band-aids because they have super-special awesome healing powers). Essentially, I was left with a mess — an artistic mess:
__Mission 2: Take the map… make something out of it._
At my second mission debriefing (a.k.a. class) I was then told I had to take whatever I had done this to this map and now pull something even more artistic out of it — take it from an artistic mess and make it into a solid artistic piece. This time, I actually kept my notes:
At first I was just planning to do something cute and whimsical, like the lines of sheet music you see in the image. No matter what I wanted it to be I wanted it to be a representation of ME — my fight, my story, my life. The longer I stared at it (and the more I got oh-so helpful feedback from Lee Jasmin, you remember him, audience) the more I began to see something else . The strips of paper the shredder had produced reminded me of skeleton fingers. And from there it was just a snowball effect; the idea grew and grew and grew until…
My first 3D project! Oorah! I gotta say, even though I had to run to Walmart at 4 in the morning to grab some more super glue, this was the most confidence I’ve had with a project yet. I really didn’t put much optimism into it in the beginning — I figured I’d give it a good try and then go back to my first idea. Mwuahaha! Can you say ‘perseverance’, audience?! The very second I formed that first finger out of paper I was sold. I not only needed to finish this for a grade, but I wanted to for me. Frankly? It gets my story across perfectly.
You’ve seen me refer to Wyoming as a bottomless Sparta-pit, that’s because it is. I spent 14 years of my life there, and although some of those years were not wasted ones, the others, well, were something damn close to wasted. Wyoming has this way of sucking people in, like a black hole, and never letting them back out. I was determined not to become part of the statistic. So the skeleton hand (constructed from the Wyoming map and bits of map from the other states I traveled through) is me, and I’m reaching out of that hellish bit, scraping my way towards Georgia — towards SCAD. It was not an easy battle, no siree, that’s why I cut so many scratch marks into the page, to give you, audience, an idea of that battle.
Littered around the page, since I needed to figure out a way to play more with the negative space, is ash from the pieces of map that I burned to better resemble a hellish pit and the labels from all the other states I used.
__Mission 3: Survive the Critique_
Of course, nothing in life is ever easy. Most everything you want, you gotta fight for it tooth and nail. At least, for me. Not that I’m whining again; I actually enjoy a good challenge. But not this morning… the morning of the critique. It wasn’t the actual critique that was the issue, it was getting there.
My car had a relapse.
So while it was busy on the Suicide Prevention Hotline I was busy being stalled out on Abercorn Street waiting for assistance. I was an hour late to the critique. Of course I was — the one time I’m 115% excited to get to class and get feedback… and I can’t get there. I was pretty sure my chance was blown. The moment was gone. Pack up. Go home. You’re ruined.
But I made it. And thanks again, C. Matthew Jackson for being my owl once more. This guy is some new kind of awesome, I swear.
Everything turned out alright, with the exception of my appearance. Messy hair, cried off makeup, and a puffy red face is no way to start describing something you’re proud of. Then again… maybe it is, maybe it added a whole new dynamic to my project that I was just too emotional at the time to realize. Huh.
The biggest chunk of feedback I received was that there was a desire for me to do something more with the background — more ash, more scratches. Which is funny because I was afraid of cluttering the background with too much of that stuff. Always go with your instincts, audience.
You better get off the page, audience. I rigged this mission log to self-destruct upon completion.