Brushing Up on Our Art and Literary Skills

This year’s Brushing editor Jenna Lindsey ’16 talks poetry, yoga, media saturation, and how this year’s art and literary journal will be different from the ones you’ve read in the past.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)

As editor of Brushing, Jenna Lindsey ’16 wants to bring cohesiveness to Rollins’ art and literary journal.

While the content in past issues hasn’t been linked by any unifying theme, this spring’s annual edition will take readers in a different direction, exploring concepts that align with deconstruction and identity, among others.

Lindsey is also forging new ground in multimedia, working with Rollins’ Archives to create an online platform for Brushing—currently available only in print—and partnering with WPRK to have authors record audio that will accompany their text on the website. In addition, a new Facebook page will include bios on the staff, interviews with authors and artists, and details about upcoming events.

Rollins students, faculty, staff, and alumni can submit poetry and art to Brushing until December 13.

Rob Humphreys: We hear you’ve got some big plans to transform Brushing into more of a cross-platform literary journal with a central theme. What can we expect when the next edition is published in April?

Jenna Lindsey: It’s hard to say how the published journal will come together, but I’m hoping for passionate submissions. Our theme is “Pass or Play,” and I encourage our prospective authors and artists to really explore what that theme means to them. My vision is for the pieces to construct a sort of societal commentary through experimentation with different forms, but of course the beauty of art is in the interpretation. This year’s journal is ready to make a statement. We are also excited to reach more people than ever with our online platform, set to go live at our release party in April.

RH: Your senior thesis, Tonic Meditations, will focus on your self-growth as influenced by the media. What are some of the pervading ideas?

JL: I think our society is obsessed with the media. It’s probably impossible to avoid media stimulation, with social media, broadcast news, billboards, commercials, even graffiti. They all report very intentional content, and the effects are overwhelming, shaping and constantly manipulating our realities. Tonic Meditations will un-ironically feature me, trying to wade through and compartmentalize all of this incoming information.

RH: Who are some of your favorite writers? And how does their influence impact your work?

JL: Recently I have been most influenced by the powerful prose of Naomi Shihab Nye and the conceptual stories of Alan Lightman. Respectively, their writing encourages me to find my passions, what drives me to write, and challenge my perspectives.

RH: Yoga plays a big part in your life, which seems pretty fast-paced these days. How does it help you balance schoolwork with being an RA in Elizabeth Hall and teaching tap dance at your childhood studio in Longwood?

JA: You never realize how important it is to breathe, and I mean intentionally breathe, until it becomes the only way to work through the chaos. Yoga teaches me to push my limits and to find the ground again when I push too far.

RH: What’s your literary style?

JA: I don’t know if I can definitely describe my style yet. Right now it’s organic and experimental, very emotionally driven. Tomorrow I might actually know what I’m doing.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)