3-D Cash Sculptures Passing Each Other in the Mail

My brother turned 30 just before Christmas. He is an artist, jeweler, and gemstone enthusiast, so with a little inspiration I arrived at a novel way to send him his birthday cash: those decade birthdays call for extra recognition, right?

30 Dollar Polyhedron James Hough

So here is the 30-sided polyhedron—constructed from 1-dollar bills—that I sent him as a late birthday gift. Late as in post-Christmas. Which means that my brother’s late Christmas gifts to my family must have passed my gift to him in the mail, because we each received our packages within a day of the other.

Cash Origami by James Hough's Brother

He sent us a cash butterfly and a cash elf boot! We were both shocked and thrilled that our minds had gone to the same obscure place when we decided what gifts to send each other. Neither of us had sent or—as far as I know—even made anything like these cash constructions before!

p.s. I should note that though my gift to him was larger in volume, his was larger monetarily:)

Our first quilt

Portrait quilt, 2014, by the Houghs

My wife’s ancestors were pioneer farmers, and we are carrying on one of their traditions.

Quilt-making!

We began this one—our first—about 5 years ago then put it on hold for a while until we got some big quilting frames last Christmas. And now we have completed it.

The design comes from a photo of our daughter cuddling our son when they were about ages 6 and 1. If you back away from the quilt about 50 feet you can see the image, which is hardly practical, so we content ourselves with wrapping ourselves in our new blanket knowing that the design is a picture of our kids, even if we can’t tell up close.

Here’s a tiny picture of it, which shows the image a little better.

Portrait quilt (small image), 2014, by the Houghs

Personal Statement

The world does not necessarily need more artists, but it always needs more people who are confident in their creative abilities, which are in fact inherent in each of us and able to be developed through practice. Particularly with a child, whose brain is still highly plastic and therefore able to learn new skills efficiently, practicing the visual arts is a fun and effective way to nurture her inventiveness and confidence in her own ideas.

In all areas of life, whether personal or professional, people benefit both from developing and trusting their own creative skills and from having creative people in their lives. In the fields of science, medicine, education, and business, people who can generate new ideas, develop new approaches to established ideas, and who can trust their abilities to do so are poised to succeed personally and to benefit others. And certainly in our roles as parents and peers, creative confidence can improve the lives of our kids, our friends, and ourselves.

Some of us will make art for a living, but all of us can make art for a life.

Business Card

Jim Public's Business Card 120831

Fedex Office wants $70 to print 250 of these, whereas I can disseminate them online infinitely for free, or at least for the sunk cost of my internet access. So I post this here and will presently distribute it on some social media sites. Paper business cards are destined for the wastebasket anyways. So you are welcome to drag a copy of this card to your computer or phone or whatever; and, when you’re finished with it, it’s better to trash pixels than papers.

That way we all win. Except Fedex Office, who loses.

Digital Baby Daughter

Illustrated Baby Daughter, Jim Public, 2003

My daughter was born during the time of my graduate studies at UNLV, where I was learning about digital art from the illustrious Helga Watkins. In an effort to improve my skills and create a portfolio piece, I used Adobe Illustrator to make this vector portrait of my baby girl. I like the idea that, because it’s a vector image, she could be scaled up infinitely without losing her smooth, baby features.