Uppercase Magazine

James Gordon Irving in Uppercase Magazine by Leslie

What started as a simple blog post has turned into my first printed article in magazine. Sometimes it's interesting how things happen. You can never quite plan the series of events required to produce a piece of work and many things need to be "just right." 

After I wrote that blog post, I began to wonder about Mr. Irving and the limited information about him online. My husband is amazing at tracking people down, as he did for his book 1950s Radio in Color, and I asked him to see what he could find out about Irving. His secret? Librarians. They know everything.

Initially, I just wanted to interview Mr. Irving for my blog and I thought it would be cool to meet him. It turned out to be very difficult to arrange a meeting though, he was sick at the time and it was hard to talk to him on the phone. The idea kind of faded away, until I met Janine at Uppercase Magazine shortly after ALT Summit last year.

She remembered the Golden Nature Guides and had an issue coming up about the creative side of science. An interview with Irving would be perfect. With Janine's interest, we had a new incentive to make the interview happen. After nine months of trying, we finally met with Mr. Irving in February of 2012.

It was wonderful to be invited into his home and to hear the story about his life and career as a commercial illustrator. He was a remarkable guy who worked very hard and had no grand illusions about himself. Modest, funny and a talented artist, he seemed to have enjoyed his life very much. Sadly, he passed away in August, and while it's unfortunate that he won't get to see the article in print, his son told us that he really enjoyed speaking with us that day about his work and basking in some attention from us. I hope that because of this article, more people will know about the fine work that Gordon did, and that his family will feel it's a fitting tribute.

Janine at Uppercase did an incredible job on the layout, it's really quite thrilling to see words that I have written and photographs that I have taken printed in a magazine! I am so grateful to her for the opportunity to do this and I hope that we can work together again soon.

Visit the Uppercase Blog for some excerpts from the article, my contributor's profile and more information about Issue 15. If you would like to read the article, you can purchase Issue 15 from the Uppercase website, however I highly recommend a subscription. I have one and love receiving these fine magazines in the mail every three months. I always find so much inspiration and information about the creative work that people are doing.

"A great idea can spark from an eureka-moment or it can be the outcome of methodical process. Whatever your method, you will find both the inspirational and the practical in this issue of UPPERCASE

In investigating the creative side of science, we were enthralled with the small bits of matter that assemble and combine to create something greater: on the softer side, coloured molecular orbs of baubles and beads are components of jewellery and art; on the flat plane, pixels, points and grids create the framework for two-dimensional creativity.

Please also enjoy our special feature “Beautiful Bitmaps” in which 26 typographers, designers and illustrators interpret a vestigial component of digital type, the bitmap."

Do you have anything from your childhood that you would like to know more about? I encourage you to research it! Meeting the people responsible for the creative work that we have grown up loving is a remarkable experience, for both sides of the table.

A Peek Inside the Office of Uppercase Magazine by Leslie

I discovered Uppercase Magazine at ALT Summit last January and was so happy to learn that they are based in my college home town of Calgary, Alberta and that the founder and design director, Janine, went to the same school as I did, The Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD), and graduated just a year ahead of me.

Janine and I began talking on twitter and email and one of the projects that I was working on happened to be a good fit for the Fall issue of the magazine. I am so excited that my first published article will be appearing in Issue 15! Stay tuned for more about that in September.

The Uppercase office is filled with gorgeous natural light, plenty of colorful items to inspire and of course all the printed magazines and books that they have produced. I'm so impressed with everything Janine is doing, she's worked hard to build a company founded on her passion and love of design and the printed page, all while raising a young family.

The magazine does not rely on advertising for revenue, so it has minimal ads, but that means getting subscriptions are even more important for them. I highly recommend you get this quarterly magazine delivered to your door! It's filled with inspiration, creative people doing incredible work and lots of amazing stories of people living their passions and dreams. Just click on the link below or in the sidebar. 

(Disclosure: I am an affiliate of Uppercase and receive $1 for each sale made through these links, but even if I wasn't, I would still be telling you to get in on this incredible magazine. It's THAT good.)

Thank you to Janine for letting me stop by the office, hang out as long as I wanted and take pictures! It was awesome to meet you in person and see where the magic takes place. 

Note for local Calgary creatives: Uppercase is located in the Art Central building in downtown Calgary on the corner of 7th Avenue and Center Street. The building is filled with galleries, studios, cafes and shops and it's totally worth a visit if you haven't been there before. Be sure to pop into Uppercase and see what they have to offer.