anna brones

writer + artist + activist

Archive for the ‘Women’ Category

Wool Sponges by Full Circle Wool

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At the end of last year, I bought a set of wool sponges from Marie Hoff (you can wash with wool, not just wear it!). I had met Marie while on a bicycle trip down the Pacific Coast two summers ago, and I have a lot of respect for all the work that she does. She herds Ouessant sheep, is an advocate of carbon farming, and last year she launched Full Circle Wool, selling climate beneficial wool and wool products.

I did a Q&A with her over on Food and Fibers Project and wanted to share a snippet here.

“We need to bring domestic processing and manufacturing back to the United States. We don’t have a diversity of industrial mills that do custom work anymore. There’s only one scouring mill in the country that will clean coarse wool on the commercial scale I need, and they are overloaded. In California alone, where I am based, we produce over 3 million pounds of wool every year. Every small scale mill that’s operating is overloaded, and we only process .03% of all that wool each year here in California. The majority of it goes overseas, and is washed with synthetic chemicals, often mixed with synthetic fibers, dyed with synthetic dyes based in coal tar, and then shipped back to the US for us to consume. About 20% of it just sits in people’s barns or goes directly into the landfill, as it can be more expensive to sell the wool than to raise it and leave it.

Especially for people who raise sheep on the coast, there’s very little incentive to sell the wool because the breeds of sheep that thrive on the coast produce coarse wool, which is lower value than fine wool, like merino. Even though their families have a tradition of appreciating wool, many just consider the wool to be a byproduct of raising meat. The lamb sales are their livelihood. In order to get ranchers a return that they can make a living on, and still produce a product that most people can afford, we need that critical link of a commercial-scale mill that can process wool locally, efficiently, and for not too high a cost. The more we can prove a demand for locally grown, locally processed, and natural fibers, the more demand there will be for milling, and the more likely investors and entrepreneurs will be in investing in that type of facility. We need more demand for, and support of, local agriculture and healthy land stewardship.”

That’s part of our longer conversation. Check out the full Q&A here.

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Written by Anna Brones

February 26, 2018 at 13:28

Downloadable Vote Poster in Support of Women’s Rights

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I made this papercut, titled “Stars, Stripes and Uterus,” back in 2016 before the U.S. presidential election, but it’s as necessary today as it was then.

If you’re going out this coming weekend marching for the Women’s March 2.0, or if you simply want to show what you stand for, I’ve turned this papercut into a free downloadable poster that you can easily print at home. Hang it in a window, hold it above your head, print out a bunch and pass them out to friends. Stand up for women’s rights.

It’s available in two sizes: 8.5×11 and 11×17.

Written by Anna Brones

January 19, 2018 at 07:15

Posted in Portfolio, Women

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Witch Fika

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“…to be a witch is to be a woman with power in a world where women are often otherwise powerless.”

– Annie Theriault, The Real Reason Women Love Witches

I read a few articles this week about witches (like this one), and it inspired this Witch Fika papercut. Gather up your coven and get together for a coffee break. You’ll be a more productive and efficient witch.

Written by Anna Brones

October 31, 2017 at 10:45

Posted in Portfolio, Women

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#withthesethighs

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“Ugh, my thighs look huge.”

My friend and I were flipping through our photos from a recent bike camping trip. There was so much good going on in the photo; we were happy and goofy, the sun was shining. You could see it on our faces, that we were in one of those rare moments that not much mattered but the present, that we were enthralled with the simple act of riding our bicycles, feeling the wind on our faces and talking about whatever came to our minds. Yet here I was, entirely ignoring the beauty of that moment captured in the photo, and instead, focused on how my thighs looked.

I am not alone. This is an automatic reaction for many women: to focus on our appearance above all else. It’s almost second nature when you look at a photo of yourself or stare into the mirror, or simply gather together with another group of women. We have a tendency to pick ourselves apart, focus on all the things we wished looked better, be it our thighs, our hips, our stomachs, our noses, our breasts, our ankles. It’s all up for judgment and scrutiny.

This may seem vain, and to some extent it is, but the onus isn’t just on us; we are after all raised in a culture that teaches us that vanity is of the utmost importance. That how we look shows who we are.

A body is much more than something to sculpt and maintain. A body is our way to get around, our way to see the world. Our body holds our heart and our emotions, it is our vehicle for existing.

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Written by Anna Brones

July 6, 2017 at 11:01

“Protest Fuel: The Revolution Must Be Fed” – Benefit Zine

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Protest Fuel: The Revolution Must Be Fed

In January 2017 (just in time for the Million Women’s March) my friend Caitlin and I will be releasing Protest Fuel: The Revolution Must Be Fed. We are currently wrapping up the final design so that we can send it to the printer right after the new year.

No matter who we are or here we live, we must eat. Food is something that unites us. With that in mind, I wanted to use food as a catalyst for change. Protest Fuel is a collection of recipes, essays, artwork and quotes, all with the goal of inspiring you to take action, whether that’s by hosting a comforting soup night or getting out on the frontlines in a protest.

The zine itself is will be printed in January 2017 in Seattle by Girlie Press. All of the contributors to this zine have volunteered their recipes, stories and time, and for that I am very grateful.

I wanted this zine to benefit a cause, but how to choose? There is no way to choose. There are so many issues that are important right now. I have chosen to donate 100% of the proceeds to the Women’s Environment and Development Organization. When women thrive, so does society. Without the environment we have nothing. As one of the WEDO founders Vandana Shiva once said, “In nature’s economy the currency is not money, it is life.” I hope that this zine inspires you to choose life, to be active within your own communities, and to support the people and initiatives committed to positive change.

You can preorder Protest Fuel: The Revolution Must Be Fed here.

Written by Anna Brones

December 29, 2016 at 16:57

“I Look Like a Farmer” Greeting Cards to Support Women in Agriculture

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I Look Like a Farmer Limited Edition Greeting Cards
I have spent a lot of this year asking myself how I can contribute to my community and beyond. As you may know, that has come in the form of publishing Comestible. Creating a platform for telling stories about food and food production has felt like the right thing for me to be doing, a way to contribute to the world in a creative and educational way.

But I wanted that platform to be able to do more. So I called up my friend Audra Mulkern of The Female Farmer Project. I love Audra’s work, and she is an amazing advocate for women farmers and sustainable agriculture.

I had made Audra a papercut inspired by one of her photographs earlier in the year, intending to eventually use it in Comestible. But in instead, it spawned an idea. “What if we did a series of cards and used them to raise money to support female farmers?”

So here we are.

I made three more papercuts inspired by Audra’s original photographs, and we turned them into a series of greeting cards called I Look Like a Farmer. The cards are 5×7″ (so perfect for framing even if you don’t want to send them!) and printed locally in Seattle, WA at woman-owned printing company Girlie Press.

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Written by Anna Brones

December 5, 2016 at 15:35

#mybodymychoice

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Stars, Stripes and Uterus, 5.5″x 8″ papercut © Anna Brones, 2016.

I made the above papercut in honor of women’s rights around the world, and if you are interested in showing your support of women’s rights, you can snag it as a coffee mug, t-shirt or print over on Society6.

Written by Anna Brones

October 6, 2016 at 12:18