Back in November I wrote about doing collage illustrations for Theatre SKAM's 2014 Season Booklet. http://balampman.ca/search/label/Theatre%20SKAM. It was epic; I laughed, I cried. Producing all of those collages in short order was some kind of Herculean task, and took a fair bit of sleight-of-hand with regards to coming up with suitable elements for each of them.
The first one I tackled was JOAN, above. I had never met Joan Mans, but was somewhat aware of who she had been, and that Matthew Payne (Artistic Producer of Theatre SKAM) had been friends with her and had written a play about her. Matthew came over with a plastic bag filled with Joan artifacts for me to use, things that he had been given after Joan died. If I remember correctly all of the things that were in that bag (and it wasn't that big): small map books, photographs, a few bits and pieces like coasters, government documents and ticket stubs... that sort of thing. Most impressive of all were many many small sheets of paper upon which Joan had written short homilies about life: ways to be, ways to see the world, ways one should behave. Going through Joan's things had me feeling privileged and humbled- I had never met this woman, was apparently reading what was most important to her, and was handling all that was left of her "earthly possessions".
There were... emotions.
I went through all of her writings, looking for something to use in the collage. Truly the only thing I wanted to use was the little piece you see above- "Be who you are and risk the consequences". Whether that small quote is actually the most representative of who she was I'll never know, but it appeared that way to me at the time. And it definitely spoke to me personally.
AND NOW TO THE POINT! Theatre SKAM has started an Indiegogo fundraiser, seeking help to mount Matthew's play, JOAN. The mostly costly perk you can purchase in this fundraiser, if you'd really like to loosen the purse-strings and help Theatre SKAM, includes the original Joan collage, shown above. Take a look, here: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/joan-a-play-about-art-memory-and-friendship.