BY SIRI BARDARSON
Whidbey Life Magazine is delivering its first print edition this week!
In tandem with its highly successful online magazine billed as “Your #1 Resource for Arts and Culture,” WLM founders Sue Taves and Jan Shannon have made the move to provide a 40-page, high-gloss magazine that captures the flavor of creative life on Whidbey, plus a roster of seasonal arts events. WLM is celebrating the release of the 2014 Spring/Summer edition at a release party this Friday night at Freeland Hall in Freeland. Be there or be square!
Do I love things in print? Let me count the ways. The paper, the pictures, the tangibility, the font variety, the keepsake, the reference, the shared experience—those are just the graphic and physical qualities. Then there is content! Anyone who has been following WLM online knows that the content has been a wild and wonderful bunch of prose, pitches, pictures and visual poetry delivered weekly by a fraction of the amazingly talented creatives here on Whidbey Island.
Isn’t that what WLM is all about? Come one, come all to this lush island to experience a creative destination, and let the print version of Whidbey Life Magazine be your perfect guide.
Let’s talk magazines and guides! I just gave 15 years of Gourmet magazines to a local thrift store. That gesture of “letting go” was tougher than my son’s first day of kindergarten. I can see the beautiful covers in my mind’s eye, the colored eggs in the clear glass basket of the March 1995 issue. Well, what can I say, these magazines meant a lot to me and they filled up three shelves in my pantry.
How about those beautiful paintings of food items on the back of Cook’s magazine? I saved those for years to wallpaper the summer cabin that has yet to enter my life.
Then there’s the Helix magazine my twin and I bought off the streets of San Francisco in 1968. Two sixteen year olds from Renton, Washington—about to have their minds blown by cartoons of the Kama Sutra and advertisements for music at the Filmore. Our mother was not amused.
And not just news, events and information but my favorite writers! At the back of House Beautiful, Phyllis Theroux would write her 600-word essay about some aspect of home that was really a philosophical treatise on place and beauty and human longing. And there was the photo journalism of Life—so political, so American, so comforting in its red, white and blue way. New Yorker cartoons cut out and stuck on the refrigerator. The gorgeous typeset movie schedule from our local Clyde movie theater, (I collected those for years). And all the advice that didn’t help me with any of my relationships from the Ladies Home Journal’s columns, “Can This Marriage Be Saved?” And Twiggy in Vogue, and Seventeen, the fashion diva of thin, freckles and eyeliner.
And guides? I have the exhibit guides from every art exhibit I have ever gone to. In the text is the tiny detail, the extra explanation, perhaps a chronology and a diagram stating “YOU ARE HERE.” So wasn’t it a wonderful idea to consolidate the huge number of noteworthy art events, galleries, working studios and work to define this special place, Whidbey Island?
And when I am done with my magazines? Ah, a magazine’s second life: cut up, collaged, ripped pages for wrapping paper, the beautiful pictures on the refrigerator or bathroom wall, the fire starter on Labor Day weekend for roasting marshmallows at your Fort Ebey campsite, a memento of an inspired visit, a lovers’ picnic or the beginning of a long love affair with this unique place that holds so much creative juice.
This print magazine idea is a little retro in its feel—but a magazine by and for artists and all those who appreciate and support art—I know a print magazine aimed at this niche demographic will succeed and I dig the heck out of the substance, form and function.
And if someone spills coffee on the console between the passenger seats, they can rip off a back page and wipe up the mess; they can tear off half a page to create a space for the ketchup for their fish and chips. Or they might clutch it to their heart as they doze on the ferry ride back to town and dream about Whidbey Island and its creative possibilities. When they get home, they’ll stow it in the storage spot behind the passenger seat for next time.
Try doing that with a bookmarked page in your virtual world. Cheers to Whidbey Life Magazine—“Your #1 Resource for Arts and Culture!”
For more information on the launch party, go to https://www.whidbeylifemagazine.org/wlm-print-magazine-announces-launch-party/.
Siri Bardarson is a musician devoted to creative projects that synthesize her classical and popular music background via her cello. She is ecstatically happy!
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Siri: Hello! I just read your blog and I love it. I, too, am eternally in love with the printed page on paper……..and save far too much, of course. We have our Bon Appetits and Gourmets nicely filed in a corner of the stairwell to the garage……I keep telling John, “we don’t need to subscribe anymore, just pull out old copies and they will seem new again.” But, whenever we buy something at Sur La Table, he seems to get a “free” subscription. Oh, well.
Betsy and I are eager to come and visit you and see a performance of Siri and Steve when I next find my way to the PNW (as I call it). She retires from her job in September…….so she will soon have enough time to do this.
As you know, I am an artist. Would you like to put some of my images in your “luddite” journal? I’d love to share.
Hope to see you before the year is out!
Love, Marc Ellen (shirttail relative)
Marc Ellen, Yes, you must come to Whidbey!! I would love that. FB message me your address and I will get a copy of the mag to you! Love your work on FB soon, Siri
Beautifully written essay, Siri, and one that hits home for us. Blake has 20 years of Fine Homebuilding and several decades of Windsurfing magazine on his closet floor. He used the Fine Homebuildings while finishing our house and maybe he’ll use them again this year when we help build our son’s. Me, I’ve got every Clyde schedule but one from the first to the last tucked under the bed–decades worth of fine art and design locally sourced. The kid will have to deal with them when we’re gone…