Editor’s Rant: The Photography Issue

A spread from the Photography Issue. Click to view the print issue.

You’re not going to find many words in this issue. We like our writers, we do. It’s just that we got a boatload of stellar visual art for our photography issue. But don’t take my word for it. I’ll allow you to quickly flip through the magazine now, but only if you pinky-swear that you will come back to me. The last time I did this, however, my ex-girlfriend never did come back. Maybe I should learn from my mistakes. Oh well. Let’s move on.

I’m not going to lie. The first time our editorial team talked about doing a strictly visual issue, I balked. At first it was because of obvious reasons: I’m a writer and words are what I play with. But also for more macro, not-so-self-centred reasons too. For me, a magazine works like this: You jauntily flip through its interior scanning its pictures until you come across something that whets your appetite. After the visuals have done their job, it’s up to the words – at first, this being the headline – and then the story itself to hold my interest. If the pictures are pretty, but the content is rubbish, I toss it. It’s the difference between a “two-minute magazine” and a “couple-hours magazine.” It’s the reason why I enjoy browsing at Chapters, because I can consume those artsy-slash-kitschy European fashion magazines in a matter of minutes, my eyes scanning those awkwardly shaped, vapidly expressive mummies with exotic threads dangling from their toothpick limbs. And it’s the reason why I just renewed my subscription to Esquire.

But there’s something different about this issue.

As I’ve written here before, Sheridan has talent. And I’m not inflexibly just talking photography. And I’m not just blowing hot air. I’m talking, illustration. Music theatre. Television and film. Animation (that’s an easy one). And hell, don’t forget about our welding program. Sadly, though, this talent is not always on display. Only our families and friends see what we do as we post our talents to Facebook; our collective skills as a college aren’t always given the pedestal they deserve. And that’s a slight problem. It’s these skills that we can display, because with a hands-on college opposed to a theory-tossing university, we have a lot to show. We are the artists. The artisans. The welders. We make the art and the universities theorize it, critiquing our photography with pedantic eyes. That’s where TRAVIS comes in. We have the ability to put some of the school’s art on display. We’re a far cry from a white pedestal, but we’ll do.

So, enough words. I want to let the visuals do the talking. Because I’m pretty sure the transcendent photography in this issue will ensure it’s more than a “two-minute magazine.” Maybe this issue will carve out a spot on your coffee table. That, or hopefully it will serve well in your cat’s litter box.

–RYAN BOLTON

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