The Beard

Some people grow their beard for religion, others grow it for sex appeal.

I decided to grow my beard to remember my friend.

A year ago today, Bill and I were looking at some pictures when I saw one of him and Jessie outside of the hospital, he was smiling and had a long goatee.

Noticing he had shaved, I commented on it.

He replied that he had grown it out to serve as a constant reminder of his daughter. He was going to shave it off when she was cured.

As we headed out to the car, he asked if I would like to hold Jessie’s urn on the car ride to the church and I said I’d be honored.

It was when I was holding her that the idea to grow my beard out for a year to remember Jessie occurred.

It was also interesting to see people’s reactions. Friends and relatives either loved it or hated it.  I still get a little angry when I think about the female Australian customs agent who, out of nowhere, said it looked “disgusting”.

But it wasn’t about them,  it was about Jessie.

It was about first day I sat next to her in English 304 and the first thing she ever said to me was, “I like your Jesus sandals.”

It was about all times she helped me as president of the Advertising Club, It was about staying up till 4am in the Inkblot Offices to finish promotion materials for “A Night with Michael Moore”. It was driving back from Baja Fresh singing to Avril Lavigne at the top of our lungs. It was about her giving me my first job in graphic design.

It was about losing one of the very few people on this planet that I could truly rely on.

Losing a loved one is a lot like losing an appendage or limb. You never really “get over it”,  you just learn to adjust to the loss and keep living.

I shaved off my beard today. And I feel like shit.

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Jessie

And We’re BACK!!

FINALLY! It’s been over four months and we are finally settled in our new home in Toronto. Here is a very small peak into our adventures and what Andrew and I were up to. Enjoy!

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Culture, Travel

End of the World Road Trip!

Image by Joshy Robots

I know I haven’t posted in a while, but it’s because I am about to embark on the roadtrip of a lifetime!

Andrew and I are moving from Australia to Toronto, Canada, and have decided to take our time (3 months) in getting there to visit my family and friends in South Korea and all over the U.S.

So much planning, money, and time have went into this and now it’s happening! Keep you updated and stay tuned for a great travel post I’m writing and an interview!

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Travel

How to build a community

Lovin this little piece of wisdom. I was at a house party near UNR a couple years back when I saw this list on a poster. I was in the habit of carrying a notepad everywhere with me so I wrote it down.

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Community

Fresh Air

Infograph by Matt Stiles

One of the things I miss the most about the US is driving to work in the morning and listening to NPR. The Australian equivalent, the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Company), doesn’t do it for me but their BBC casts keep me satisfied.

I especially miss Fresh Air, with my girl Terry Gross.

As many of you know, I am gathering survey’s for an infographic on Nevada (which you can take here) and I stumbled on this graphic from the NPR Fresh Air tumblr (I know, how gangsta is Fresh Air with it’s own tumblr).

It was made by Matt Stiles, a data journalist at NPR. He calls the technique “heatmapping” and at first glance I thought it was something about ph levels. You can read more about it on The Daily Viz.


Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Community, Design

Go Idlewild

For an assignment in grad school my professor made us construct sentences from typefaces found in everyday life (signs, manhole covers, etc.) Ever since then I’ve found myself  seeing great (as well as terrible) type all around me.

When I saw this sign a couple of years back I immediately fell for the hot curves and “wild” sexiness of the type (yes, I tend to use personification to describe type and it can get creepy). I took a picture but it was forgotten on my hard-drive until now.

I was looking for some inspiration for a post and started flipping through my old pics and fell in love all over again. I thought to myself, that would look great on a t-shirt. As you can tell, I do a lot of mock-ups for t-shirts and this is because I find it a lot of fun (plus Jessie LOVED designing t-shirts).

So the first step I did was isolate the type and paint it ”Biggest Little City Pink” from the Reno sign.

After that, I messed around with colors and layout and got these:

These are just for fun, only mock-ups. What do you think?

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Community, Culture, Design

The Map Library

Maybe it’s the traveler in me or the eagle scout, but I could look at old maps all day long…which is exactly what I have been doing thanks to The Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno! It has over 140,000 maps and is the largest collection in Nevada. I don’t know if all of them are on there, but someone has put a lot of the maps online here and I have been having a great time pouring over them. They really are little pieces of art.

United States Department of the Interior Geological Survey for Reno, NV (made in 1893, reprinted in 1945) from the Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Map detail

It’s hard to believe nowadays that these were hand drawn. The designer in me is both fascinated and terrified at the same time. I love how the water is drawn.

Elmer J. Chute's map of the Goldfield Mining District (1907) from the Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno.

This map of Goldfield mining claims is friggin awesome. Loving the colors.

Map detail

The typography on these is just as interesting to me as the maps. Can’t get enough of that capital G and the serifs.

Map detail

Reno (1868) from the Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno courtesy of the Nevada Historical Society.

Woodside-Eureka Mining Co. (ca. 1900) from the Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Degroot's Map of Nevada Territory (1863) from the Mary B. Ansari Map Library at the University of Nevada, Reno.

This is probably my favorite. My dad was a draftsman and it reminds me of the stacks of  blueprints in his office. I think maps in general remind me of him.

Map detail

I have died and gone to typography heaven.

WE NEED MORE OF THIS! We need more of our history online! Our university’s special collections departments need to follow that The Library of Congress is setting with it’s flickr pages, making pieces of our history so easy to access. Maybe they are already doing this, and if you know of any other digital archive pertaining to Nevada and it’s history, please let me know.

Once again, you can check out the collection here, or a check out their collection of Nevada History in Maps which is a little bit easier to work through

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Community, History, UNR

The Jessie A. Turner Memorial Scholarship

Photo by Billy Turner

Last night, the first Jessie A. Turner Memorial scholarship was presented at the annual Savitt Awards dinner. It was given to Katie Hippert, a Public Relations student at the Reynolds School of Journalism. Katie was joined by her parents along with Jessie’s closest friends and family.

Photo by Billy Turner.

Congrats, Katie!

Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Community, Jessie, UNR

Sarah Morris’ Las Vegas

Mandalay Bay (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris

It was my first time at the Guggenheim (the one in New York, not the one that used to be in the Venetian) and as I made my way up the atrium, the above painting made me stop in  my tracks. It was so graphic and strong, yet so familiar I couldn’t stop looking at it. It was a pleasant surprise to look down and see that it was titled “Mandalay Bay (Las Vegas)”. Ah, a little piece of home.

It was done by Sarah Morris, a British-born American artist whose work, according to Tedd Mann at, is a “reference the network of power relationships and communication systems encoded in the architecture of late capitalism.”

MGM Grand (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris

Rio with Palms (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris.

Mr. Mann (a title, funny enough, I called my roomates’ blue heeler mix) mentions a lot of other stuff about these Las Vegas pieces “echoing the hermetic and self-referential nature of much of abstract painting.” but I think that’s just a lot self-aggrandizing back stories artists give to charge people more money.

Despite of how pretentious the art world is, I love these paintings. I love how architectural they are. I love the use of color. I love that they capture a piece of Las Vegas.

I hope that you enjoy them as much as I do.

Caesars (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris.


Speedworld (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris.

Neon Midnight Fantasy (Las Vegas), 1999. Household gloss paint on canvas. Copyright Sarah Morris.


Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Art, Culture

By Land and Sea

This is the first photo I took of Carolyn….how telling. Especially since she is embarking on a 3-month journey from Switzerland to Reno all on bicycle.

I still remember the first time I met Carolyn Van Lydegraf. It was years ago on the playa at Burning Man (which already says heaps). After two years of not attending because I was back East at grad school, I had randomly manifested myself back “home” and was searching for Natasha, a mutual friend of ours (it was a suprise, Natasha didn’t know I was attending). I recognized Carolyn from Facebook pics and Natasha’s emails full of stories  from the duo’s year-long South American backpacking adventure.

Carolyn rolled into camp on her fixie  (believe me, it was more cool than pretentious). I asked her if she had seen Natasha. Instead of answering she pulled off her dusty goggles and gave me a big hug.

We sat down and immediately started chatting like old New Jersey housewives. I had finally found a long-lost sister.

Since then, I have learned that Carolyn is a traveler, an advocate, a teacher, a cyclist, a former member of a punk rock band, an overall formidable force for good and one of the most interesting people I know (one of the highest compliments I can give someone)  .

Time has passed and love has taken us away from our home in Nevada with her ending up in Switzerland and myself to Australia.

But to my surprise I have just found that she and her partner in crime, Kurt (aka God Bless Kurt), are taking a 3-month journey from their home in Basel, Switzerland to their other home in Reno, Nevada not by air…BUT BY BICYCLE (with the help of a cargo ship across the Atlantic). Holy schnitzel!

Here are some pics from the photo blog they are keeping of their journey. Check it out. Give ‘em some love.

"Disappointment..."by Kurt Riedi and Carolyn Van Lydegraf from

"... I mean Frodo and Sam didn't have nice weather, either." by Kurt Riedi and Carolyn Van Lydegraf from

"Fishing house on the Rhine" by Kurt Riedi and Carolyn Van Lydegraf from


Posted by: on 24.09.2021 in Recreation, Travel



















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