1. How to Photograph Your Artwork

    So you want to submit some of your art for the Spring Zine, but you’re not sure how to document it so that it looks it’s best quality. Here is some advice!

    First, if it’s smaller than 11x17, scan it! The scanners at SPU are very good quality and scan colors very accurately. When scanning, make sure to select a higher resolution and color scan (not black and white). You may also want to change the file kind from PDF to JPEG.

    If it’s a larger piece, or a sculpture, photographing it will be your best option. However, this process can be a little flukey—so be patient and be as precise as possible.

    1. Photograph outside on a cloudy day, to avoid strong shadows and sunlight on a sunny day, or photograph inside in a very well lit room. Photographing your work outside will create more natural lighting and probably be more true to the real colors. If you photograph your work inside, DO NOT USE FLASH. This will create hot spots on the piece, especially if graphite or any glazing is used. You will want to set up lights around it so that it creates an even lighting across the surface of your piece.

    2. When holding your camera to take the picture, try to hold it at the same angle as the piece. In other words, keep the lens parallel to the art. This means that when you crop the image of your work, you won’t have to crop off too much of a corner that got distorted in the image.

    3. Tripods are your friends. This will help stabilize the camera and prevent the image from being blurry—especially if you are shooting in an area that is lower light.

    4. You will have to edit the picture you take. It is most important that you crop the image so that none of the space around the piece is showing, but you may also find it helpful to do color or exposure correction. If you have Photoshop, that is your best option. The computer lab in the art center has Photoshop, which you can use if you have taken Intro to Computer Art. If not, iPhoto is your next best option. I try to avoid using this because it lowers the quality of the image, but it will get the job done.

    Other suggestions: Art Room 4 has a large white wall that is perfect to hang your work on to photograph. This will make lighting easier as well as being on a nice, flat surface. There are also lots of easels in the room that you can use to hold paintings that you can’t tack into the wall.

    Photographing your artwork will always be a challenge—it is something I still struggle with—and it will never be perfect. That being said, if you want some help, contact us! I would be more than happy to meet up with you to help photograph your piece or walk you through the very basics of Photoshop. Knowing how to do this is a good skill to have and makes your artwork appear all that more professional.

    —Erin Miller, Lingua Illustrator


  2. Installation Inspiration

    I have something to admit. I love a good painting, a good prose piece. But the things that capture my imagination the most are installation works. 

    Art installations are three-dimensional, site-specific works, and they are meant to transform our understanding of a given space. This is fundamentally different then, say, walking around a sculpture (like at the latest Senior Show — which you should totally go to!!!). Installation art changes your understanding of height, depth, motion — all the things we take for granted as human beings. Lingua even did a mini one at Exhale in the fall. 

    One of my favorite installations is American artist Ann Hamilton’s massive installation, “the event of the thread.” 

    the event of a thread from Paul Octavious on Vimeo.

    Here’s what one website said about the exhibit: 

    the event of a thread references the building’s architecture, as well as the individual encounters and congregational gatherings that have animated its rich social history. A multisensory affair, the work draws together readings, sound, and live events within a field of swings that together invite visitors to connect to the action of each other and the work itself, illuminating the experience of the singular and collective body, the relationship between the animal and the human. 

    I’m going to stop one minute.

    Can I just be honest and say that I have no idea what this means? I mean, “the relationship between the animal and the human”? “Rich social history”? “Singular and collective body”?

    I’m sure that whoever this person is, they know what they are talking about. 

    But regardless of all this fancy contemplation, for me this piece is pure magic. This piece reminds me of childhood. It reminds me of the magic and mysticism of play. It reminds me of awe, of looking up into the sky as a child and wondering exactly how and why the clouds and sky moved that way. Perhaps, they were tugged along by children’s swing sets.

    -Jessica Beebe, Lingua Editor-in-Chief


  3. Lingua Llama Got Swag

    For me, Seattle magically transforms after spring break. There is no good reason for it, but as soon as the spring quarter starts, Seattle just blossoms into awesome. But even better than sunshine is all the things happening at Lingua this quarter.

    Not only does our spring journal come out (and you should definitely pre-order your copy here), but it’s also the time of year when SPU students write the hardest, create the best, and are just generally pretty hardcore from April to June.

    It’s the time of year to buy a journal to feed your wonderful llama brain with art and literature. Submit your poetry, prose, paintings, mixed media collages, photography, music, metalworks, and hand-painted clogs to the journal. (And submit now! We love getting to take time with your work.) And when the journal’s all ready, make sure you come to our release party! 

    And guys, we have some fun things up our sleeves this quarter. Keep an eye on your Facebook page, Twitter feed, or on the blue skies so you don’t miss the goodies we have in store! But in the meantime, here’s a bunch of links to distract you from homework

    And in case you missed it

    Peace out my friends, 

    Jessica Beebe, Lingua Editor-in-Chief


  4. An Epilogue (of Winter Quarter), aka What the Heck am I Doing Over Spring Break?

    Dearest llama lovelies, the end of the quarter has come! You’ve submitted your artwork and writing and we’ve produced our gorgeously designed (thanks Lingua design team Sarah and Erin) winter zine. If you haven’t grabbed a copy, you can pick up a copy outside our office or go to the Unicom desk during finals week. We’ll also be putting the zine around other places on campus so keep an eye out. 

    Also don’t forget! March 21 (end of finals week) is the last chance for you to save yourself a bit of money. Our spring journal — chock full of excellent writing, artwork, photography, and a CD! — will go up in price as soon as we hit spring break. So order your copy early! Click on the “Order Journal” tab above or on our Facebook page to get your discounted journal today. You can just credit it to your student account (sssh… the parents won’t notice).  

    So if you’re wondering what the heck you’re going to do to keep yourself occupied over spring break, just remember that Lingua is always accepting submissions. And coming up, we’re going to be making a CD! So get composing, get writing, get your art on — do anything to keep yourself creatively alive over break. Then we’ll chat about what you did when you come back.

    As always, we at Lingua are at your disposal. And we really like emails, weirdly enough. So send us things! Good luck in your finals and have a wonderful spring break. 

    Jessica Beebe, Lingua Editor-in-Chief


  5. Lingua Winter Zine Release is Today!


    So, you’ve probably heard of the party. Or maybe you haven’t, or maybe someone told you and you forgot — they’re all understandable situations. But Tuesday, March 11, TODAY, Lingua is having their winter zine release at Emerson lobby and there will be a few lovely things in store.

    First of all, you will be able to claim your winter zine for free, filled with pieces done entirely by students like you. Photography, amazing art, portraits, poetry and prose are among the pieces that have been submitted and chosen for the zine this quarter. But, like I said before, the zine is free and anyone who comes can take one — no elite membership required!

    Second, we will be hosting in the Emerson lobby with a sound system so that a few contributors can do readings of their submitted work. It will be a mellow performance, no bottle-throwing or mosh-pit. But if you want a chance to see Ally Christofferson, Brenda Ray and Joey Leon perform their pieces, join us and support them as they read. Afterwards, they will tell us a little bit about their personal experiences as writers and about their struggles, success, and inspiration.

    And at last, the news that you will get free food: we will be serving some delicious nosh while our writers read and Jessica, our editor-in-chief, hosts. We are planning to have something both sweet and satisfying, hot and cold, simple and elegant. If you are befuddled by that description of our mystery dessert, you should come and find out.

    We would be honored, as the Lingua Llamas, to have you at our release party: join us tonight in Emerson lobby at eight o’clock pm for readings, refreshment, and zines… Drop by and enjoy the llama.

    Hannah Peterson, Social Media Manager

  6. Featuring readings from Ally Christofferson, Joey Lyon, and Brenda Ray! 


  7. 7 Exciting Things You Should Know About Lingua

    Guys! There’s so many cool things happening at Lingua right now! 

    1. Submittable. We are launching a BRAND NEW method of accepting submissions for the spring journal and it’s awesome. Now, instead of dealing with confusing emails and trying to figure out how to format your submissions, simply click on the “Submit to Lingua” tab on our website and follow the instructions! This system is legit and used by a lot of big names like Tin House and the Believer, so you can thank us for teaching you to submit like a pro.

    2. Spring journals only $13.50 this quarter. The spring journal is cheaper than usual this quarter! Right now, you can pre-order our large, glossy, 50+ page spring literary and arts publication for just $13.50 by clicking the “Order Journal” tab above. You can pay with cash, check, or by crediting your student account. The price goes up to $15 on March 20, so don’t wait. You can save $1.50 and buy yourself a very small latte.

    3. Winter Zine Release! This March 11 at 8pm in the Emerson lobby, Lingua is throwing our winter zine release party! It’ll be great fun, with coffee, pastries, and readings from SPU poetry superstars like Ally Christofferson, Joey Lyon, and Brenda Ray. RSVP to our event on Facebook for more details and updates!

    5. This year at Lingua we’re launching a whole new aspect to our presence on campus by offering editorial feedback on your work. Whether you’re hesitant to publish and just want some help, or you want to strategize how to best submit for publication, we are willing to work with you. Simply email us at thelinguajournal@gmail.com to arrange a time to meet. 

    6. Are you interested in helping us curate the spring journal? Every year we put together a board of students who are interested in helping to choose what goes in our awesome, 50+ page, gorgeously designed and printed spring journal. We create both an visual arts review group and a literary review group. If you a) love Lingua, b) are interested in publishing and curation, or c) want a really cool line on your resume, shoot us an email.

    7. Want to steal my job? If so, that’s totally cool, because we’re beginning our hiring process for next year’s editor-in-chief! If you’ve ever dreamed of running a literary and arts publication, then get experience at Lingua next year. It’s pretty cool. You read student work, throw parties, all that jazz.

    Look how happy our mascot is at all these awesome changes!


    And, as always my creative friends: read, create, submit.

    Jessica Beebe, Lingua Editor-in-Chief 

  8. Whimsy for a Winter Day

    If you’ve ever felt that SPU is an artistically and literarily barren campus, you’d be wrong. If you’ve ever felt that the continual gray, cloudy days have choked the color out of this campus’s vision, then you’d be wrong. 

    I think ever quarter, Lingua proves that idea wrong. We love publishing the best art and literature on our campus. And we love color. We love whimsy. Especially when things get cold, rainy, and grey, beautiful art and writing helps us survive the winter months.

    And for this post, I’m happy to prove the naysayers wrong again with some recent images dug up from previous SPU art shows. These students are now all alums, off in the world taking their fantastic work with them. As you’re slogging through a inhospitably wintery Tuesday, be inspired by your predecessors. There’s enough color for everyone. 

    From left to right, top to bottom: 1 ”Personal Icon I” by Mandy Hough, 2 “The Naïve and The Lame” by Mandy Hough, 3 & 4 unknown title of art installation by Sabrina Chacon Barajas, 5 & 6 untitled illustrations by Tracey Ige, 7 Cerebral Portrait by Tracey Ige.


  9. Creative Conversations: Discovery and Community

    Dr. Reinsma, an English professor and a lover of literature, phrased art as “giving us simply who we are”. We sometimes only know ourselves after reading about characters who we truly connect with, or through creating art that reveals a part of our individuality. In this way, sharing our art with one another can be a very personal act.

    Becky Gonzalez, a sophomore student with a love for poetry and good books, confirmed the need for art with these words: “art is self-expression”. The ability to express our uniqueness through a creative medium is a gift, and a way to release our own thoughts and ideas. Art reflects the artist, which might be why truly serious writers and musicians and painters spend countless hours and years perfecting their craft.

    An environment where artists can share their work and expect honest but encouraging feedback is a treasure. Creative Conversations, which takes place in the library every Thursday from 12:00-12:50pm, brings an communicative excitement to the process of sharing work. It is a weekly event where people inside the SPU community get to display their work and then welcome conversations about it afterward. Previous contributors have been Jeff Keuss talking about Stephen King, Suzanne Wolfe speaking about her new novel, The Iron Ring, and Andrew Lumpe giving information on how to make bPortfolios (blog portfolios). The only requirements of Creative Conversations, as stated by their page on the SPU site, is to “bring your curiosity and join in conversations about the discovery, creation, and sharing of knowledge”. Otherwise, it is free and hosted in the reading room on the library’s main floor.

    In case you’ve been procrastinating, today (Thursday, February 27) is the last Creative Conversation for this quarter. Theater professor Don Yanik will be discussing his work in designing scenes for SPU’s theater productions. Professor Yanik is known as one of the most talented scenographers on the West Coast and he designs sets for professional theaters like the Seattle Rep, Taproot Theatre, and the Civic Opera. So get down to the library! And be on the lookout for more Creative Conversations next quarter.

    - Hannah Peterson, Social Media Managerimage


  10. Poetry Repurposed

    (from the Levi’s “Go Forth” commercial, featuring Walt Whitman’s “America”)

    Although wit, catchphrases, and humor are still staples of TV commercials, a new trend is emerging: the use of famous poems read as voice-overs to pathos-invoking ads. These commercials feature poems that would be easily recognizable to most of the college-educated population—or at least identifiable as “oh, that’s a good poem”—along with inspiring clips of everyday American life, linking the brand identity to a sense of national and cultural identity.

    As such, it should come as no surprise that the most popular poet for this new trend is the man who gave American poetry its own identity: Walt Whitman. The first of these commercials I saw was this Levi’s ad, featuring an original recording of Walt Whitman reading his poem “America”:


    Walt Whitman has also been used by Apple in their new iPad Air commercial, and Percy Shelley’s “Ozymandias” was used to advertise Breaking Bad’s finale. More recently, several of the international promotion videos for the 2014 Winter Olympics have featured poems, some of which are contemporary readings of older poems, such as Helen Fairbairn’s “The Winter Spirit.”  However some, like the official BBC Olympics trailer, feature original poetry:


    To all the dissenters to this new trend out there, I’ll simply say that we as a general population seemed to get over the use of Tchaikovsky in Subway commercials. So could this be a new age for poetry? As a poet, I hope so, as long as we keep a certain amount of integrity towards the poems themselves, and I think the commercials we’ve seen so far have struck an acceptable balance. In fact, I bet Walt Whitman would be absolutely delighted to know his poetry was so diverse.

    -Adam Hutchinson, Lingua Business Manager