Everyday Skulls

With the 10th anniversary of my original Skull-A-Day project approaching I was excited to discover this new take on the concept on Instagram recently!

Brandon Geist in Coney Island, NY is creating Everyday Skulls...

Why did you decide to do this project?
At the end of last year I left my job running RollingStone.com, completely burnt out and in desperate need of a breather. One thing in particular that I missed in the hecticness of that job was any time, energy and brain power to be artistically creative, so as way of kicking starting my creative juices, I came up with this project for myself. I've always doodled skulls in spare moments and meetings, etc., so my original thought was to draw a skull a day, but that seemed too obvious and too in my wheelhouse, and so thinking about it a little more, I came up with this concept. The concept was also loosely inspired by Helen Altman's "Spice Skulls" piece, which I saw a number of years ago at the Museum of Arts and Design in NYC; thinking about a daily skull art project for myself reminded me of that piece, which helped direct me to the Everyday Skulls idea.

The general rules are that the mediums should be something mundane and everyday and not purchased explicitly for the project, and also that any particular skull should be made solely from that one medium, some of the skulls push the lines a little in terms of this rule, but in general, I've tried pretty hard to abide by it because, in many ways, the constraints are what bring out the most creativity in the project.

How has doing a yearlong/daily project affected your life? It's been mostly fun, but occasionally feels almost like a job that I need to get done. (The number of times I've realized I haven't made a skull yet at 11:30 p.m. and scrambled to get one done...) And as I've gone on, it's definitely gotten a lot harder 1) as obvious mediums are used up, and 2) as my own standards for entries increase (I've rejected more than a few skulls as just not good enough). It has been fun, though, especially as my 5-year-old daughter has gotten interested, in helping think up mediums and make actual skulls...but mostly in consuming the skulls made in edible mediums. Seeing friend and family get caught up in the project has been cool, too, and also seeing some of my more artistic friends surprised by my dedication to my project and the creativity of it (one such friend described it as "borderline insanity"—in a complimentary way) has been fun. Maybe more than anything it's changed the way I look at the world: Now I see skulls everywhere.

See all of Brandon's skulls HERE.

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