Jes Lee

Steady on

First, I want to thank everyone that has congratulated me on my latest project! All of the kind words really, really mean a ton to me.

I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t admit that I am a bit overwhelmed thinking of everything that is coming up, and needs to be done. But it will all happen. I have learned to have faith in that, and keep going one bit at a time.

Today was supposed to be a busy day filled with work, followed by an evening with friends. But, due to me still not being back to feeling 100% after the upper respiratory crap I have had the last couple of weeks, and John starting to not feel great again, we are slowing down. Something I probably need more than I care to admit.

So, after work today, I will go home, and curl up on the couch with John, watch a few movies, and work on the mechanical processes of getting images ready for this project. Thanks to a new hard drive in my little laptop, working on those things from the couch is possible!

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This new year is still new



I am still getting the hang of this new year.

I have introduced a lot of new practices into my creative life. Some are sticking well, others not as much.

I have kept up with my film 365 project, and in the process fixed one of my broken cameras.

I have kept up with my ‘morning pages’ journaling practice, though not quite every morning, and not always 3 full pages. But I am journaling and writing more, and it is helping me more than I ever thought.

I have started doing yoga. I went to three classes last week, and really enjoyed the challenge and calm they provided. (Also, yoga makes me feel warm, which I desperately need now!)

I have started working with the studio manager at MCBA on a very exciting project there.

I have started a new book making class at MCBA that will guide me towards making a new editioned book. I admit, I was scared to death to go to this class. I still am, though much less than I was. It is intimidating studying under and next to book artists that I look up to and admire, and feeling like my work belongs. But it has been amazing. I have a lot of work to do on this project, and many articles and books to read to help guide me through this design process, and I am looking forward to it!

Through a very kind friend’s amazing generosity (if you happen to be reading this, you know who you are!) I am the owner of an Impossible Project Instant Lab camera. This amazing little invention creates instant photos of any image you can put on a cell phone. I have played with it all weekend, trying different exposures, making images of cell phone photos and artwork compilations, and double exposures. 2014-02-08 11.31.45

There will be a full blog post on this very soon! I am still too amazed at what it can do to really put in words yet.

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I have had to do more healing this winter than I ever expected to. For the first in quite a while, I finally feel like I have a better grip on it. 2014 is still new and still fresh, and still great.

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Today also happens to be the birthday of the guy I adore. I am very happy to be enjoying 2014 with him. Happy Birthday love!

I am not pretending…

…that these poems are good, or finished. Many of them will never make it any farther than this blog, and that is ok. A few of them will be edited, and re-worked and added quite possibly added to something else farther along. These poems are first drafts. It isn’t easy posting first drafts here where anyone could read them, but it also isn’t easy writing a poem a day and for a week I have accomplished exactly that.

Day 1:

The urge to run
Still tastes new to me.
To go get my love
Jump in the car
And drive.
To pick a cardinal direction
At random
And see what it will eventually show.

My muscles tense as I drive
A sense of responsibility keeps me
To freeways and roads I know
As expected.
Always as expected.

It isn’t all that bad
Staying here.
The princess doesn’t like car rides anyway.
But the desire to escape
Only gets stronger.

I will just drive.


Day 2: (Writing about Digital and her latest persona. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, ask me! Or come see the artwork I will have up in June at MCBA!)

she makes maps
from the photos
plotting journeys
and adventures
making mementos
and journals
a human would treasure.
her treasure
is the raw data
the digital paths
left without knowing.


Day 3: (a long meandering poem)

She ticks off tasks
sets reminders
everything she has been programmed to do
and more

long work days end
where i find myself
brain dead
but there is relief
and a bit
of hope.

The urge to run is a little less today.
buckle down
finish tasks
check mark
check mark
maybe it was the sunshine today
the need to get paid
the need to complete something
the need for relief.

Tomorrow is new
and hopelessly hopefully incomplete
for now.


Day 4: (two short poems about Digital)

She wove stories for
Her human
Using resistors
Like thread
Delicate needlework
Her only hope
That her work was
And that she could
Be loved.
Trees built like train maps
Each branch scattering off
Cross roads
The end of the line
The tip of a leaf
Routes meandering
Journeys to and from.


Day 5: (a haiku, just because)

Snowflakes in April
Seem not so uncommon here
As each spring day flees.


Day 6: (from inspiration on the NaPoWriMo blog: write a farewell to something)

farewell to the night
farewell the the skyline
lit up in millions of tiny lights
farewell to the atmosphere
with the billions of stars and planets
farewell to the moon
farewell to it’s shadowy face
and farewell to the river
the collector of reflections
gathering the lights in it’s watery layers
replicating the atmosphere
duplicating the skyline
and rocking it all to sleep with the waves.
farewell to the night
until tomorrow.


Day 7:

Today was work
nestled in between
two lovely drives spent
listening to music
blasted through car speakers.

Today was work
stuck in between
the not quite daylight hours
that exist at either end of the day.

Today was work
jammed in between
day dreams of trips
of long car rides with music
of finishing this day
this project this series
and floating away.

Today was work
but I am no longer in between.


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Work-in-progress: The walled city

Using a virtual reality machine was the only way

to get over the wall and into the city.

Going there physically, in Real World, was far too dangerous.

The walled city had not been habitable for decades,

yet it’s toxicd environment bread the most interesting creatures.

We went to watch them often.

(Inspired by Cherie Priest’s book Boneshaker)