Not your typical postcards from Venice, this book of greetings culled from the photographs of world-traveling freelance art director Maggie Morris depicts Venice in a more natural light.
Tattered palm fronds, sunbleached bungalows and requisite landscapes of the Pacific round out an assortment of the natural coastal beauty as well as the unpolished, eclectic character of beachside living at the edge of LA. The palpable, everyday encounters were captured by the fresh eyes and eager lens of Morris in her first years in Venice as a New York transplant discovering avenues less traveled.
"The visual details of this new place so different from home were a thrill—the architecture, the surfers, the vintage cars, the constant sunshine, the palm trees. I photographed everything I saw daily," Morris blogged in the announcement of her book, the first edition in a series of Local Postcards, which she released this summer." At first this city felt like a vacation from my life. Days turned to months and then years, and I realized I was not on vacation, but I was making a home in a new place. Here’s the Venice where I live."
The culmination of untimely events and an opportunity to take on a new creative endeavor in LA landed her as a temporary guest at a friend's home in Venice three years ago, but every time she planned to return home, circumstances prolonged her stay. True to her east coast roots, Morris' preferred method of travel was not by car or cruiser, but on foot, and it was during these moments of quiet exploration, enamoured by the golden light while also longing for loved ones in New York, she captured a genuine snapshot – 24 genuine snapshots – that will tug at the sentiment of anyone who knows and loves this town.
As she continued to work with clients on the east coast and other cities around the world, Morris used her mounting collection of photos to print out and mail handwritten thank you notes to colleagues when jobs were completed.
"Instead of sending a text or email, I thought I should send them a beautiful picture that they'd want to see and maybe pin above their desk," says Morris. "I wanted there to be a lifeguard tower and beach sunset, but there's also a few vintage cars, foliage and surfers – more than what you'd expect."
As an art director immersed in all realms of digital advertising and social media, (she has worked with brands including TOMS, BMW, Samsung and CondeNast) Morris feels the need to completely disconnect from everything digital now and then, sometimes by finding a remote corner of the world with no wifi. In this spirit, she appreciates the slowness of analog communication: handwritten, hand-delivered mail, particularly postcards. "It's a reminder," she says, "that someone, somewhere in the world, was thinking of me and took the time to write just to say hello." Future books of Local Postcards are in the works featuring photos spanning from cornfields in Vermont to (pictured below) shell collecting in Mozambique.
Of course, you needn't be in faraway places to find occasion for her postcards. They deliver a cheerful pop of art to gift packages in lieu of pricier letterpressed options. They could be framed as home decor, or displayed as a coffee table book alongside your copies of Venice, CA: Art + Architecture, Cottages In The Sun, and Kalifornia Blu.
Follow the adventures of Maggie Morris on Instagram.