The Chapel Bell Press

Editorial Samples

Posted by Michael Banks on December 24th, 2018

Fabric: The Thread of Change for Refugees

An excerpt from the Chapel Bell, Read the Full Article H E R E.

Far too often, art is labeled as an (invalid) attempt at social commentary, but it can be so much more. Taking progressive steps to create positive change in the world can start with a simple piece of fabric in your hand. For art major Miranda Rupkey, a little bit of fabric and a sewing machine are the only catalysts she needs to change the world.

“I think artists have a voice and essentially I think it should be used to talk about things that are going wrong—to wake up the people that are looking at [the art],” said fabrics design art major Miranda Rupkey.

For Rupkey, whose heart was burdened by the stories of refugees, fabric became the medium through which she could thread a narrative of these people’s hardships. Through this narrative, she hopes to change how refugees are perceived and treated.

To begin this work, Rupkey designed a book bag for her “material futures” class final. She carefully crafted a bag that tells the story of many refugees, from fleeing their homes with few belongings to the rejections they may face when finally reaching a “safe-haven” such as the United States.

For Rupkey, whose heart was burdened by the stories of refugees, fabric became the medium through which she could thread a narrative of these people’s hardships. Through this narrative, she hopes to change how refugees are perceived and treated.

The book bag contains a series of graphic panels, each with a specific story. The outside panel of the book bag depicts an abstracted version of a Syrian City. Each square of fabric conveys a violent display of dust and rubble. The bag’s interior panel reveals merciless waves crashing upon an adjacent refugee camp. Every tile and sliver of fabric add depth and dimension of the refugee experience.

“I would like this project to be a reminder that these people are people,” Rupkey said. “They are fleeing something dangerous, the journey that they [went through] was not easy and the action step would be to be welcoming and loving to these people.”

With only a few threads, Rupkey changes the lives of refugees.

Loving these people is exactly what Rupkey intends to do. She plans to pursue her passion of helping refugees after college as well. She wants to help humanize refugee populations, so they are seen as people–not a foreign threat. In some capacity she hopes to work with female refugees and wants to teach them how to sew. By teaching sewing as a practical and functional skill, Rupkey believes that she can empower these women to create a new life and business for themselves.

Rupkey actively loves refugees through the fabric that she crafts. Each woman she teaches to sew is now equipped with the ability to start her own business. With a thread and needle she can changed the direction of these women’s lives.

So then, what will your fabric be? How will you be a positive catalyst for change and promote altruism in the world. Do you have a pen and paper? If so, you have the power to create change. Paint and canvas? Create change. Thread and needle? You are the catalyst for change.

Inhabitants of the Digital Age

An excerpt from the Chapel Bell, Read the Full Article H E R E.

An iPhone’s glowing brightness is the dawn of my morning. My highways are the digital landscape. My mode of transportation—the browser. I scroll relentlessly through notifications; my eyes work tirelessly to keep up with the constant bombardment of information. At night, I stare into a tablet—the last face I see before drifting into sleep. I am an inhabitant of the digital age.

We are millenials, the generation destined to integrate technology into every facet of our education, work, and leisure. However, it’s easy to become entangled in the mass of technology surrounding us; it can be daunting and perplexing. We are a society transfixed on tech, yet the obstacles keeping us from understanding that tech can seem insurmountable. Don’t be discouraged in this difficulty! The University of Georgia offers an abundance of programs and accessible technology that encourages our technological literacy.

“Technology affects every facet of modern life. It’s really hard to think of any part of our day-to-day lives that isn’t touched by technology,” said John Weatherford, a lecturer and faculty member from the New Media Institute at Grady College. “And just the same way that you need to be [academically] literate and financially literate, I think you need to be technologically literate. It helps you navigate the world around you and make good choices.”

Continued H E R E.

Three Wise Words, Tommy Keough

An excerpt from the Chapel Bell, Read the Full Article H E R E.

Self-confidence has an expiration date. At one point or another we all feel unappreciated and undervalued—like the stale loaf of bread on the back of the shelf at Kroger. People deserve to be valued, inspired, and appreciated. For local illustrator and Athenian Tommy Keough, this mission is simple. All that is required is three wise words.

Keough is a fifth year Landscape Architecture student who works for the digital design studio Young Athenians. He learned the basics of graphic design in Landscape Architecture courses and began creating graphics such as movie posters and iconic portraits of rappers such as Biggie and Childish Gambino, which he released on his etsy shop. After building up a clientele, Keough began designing logos and concert posters for local bands such as Son & Thief. However, his interest in these jobs eventually tired, and that’s when he stumbled upon the #3wisewords campaign. The #3wisewords campaign asks participants: if you could give advice to a group of people in only three simple words, what would it be?

“It’s meant to catch people off guard, because I want to get what people truly think. It’s like personal mantras that they’re living by. Everybody’s got something that keeps them going,” Keough said.

Continued H E R E.

Photographs courtesy of Unsplash Photo Commons.