Tessa Hulls is a reader, writer, illustrator, painter, public speaker and all-around maker.
This presents a problem. The problem lies within describing someone creative who does everything because they could be misrepresented as a hobbyist. It is the curse of the multitalented. So, I very carefully note that Tessa makes work and executes her ideas in a variety of forms, such as illustration, writing, murals, and performance art (I’m not even sure she would call it that, but what else do you call a spoken presentation with drawings that illustrate an idea one is grappling with?). You may have seen Tessa sketching at a TPR event as her way of note-taking, or perhaps you have read her beautiful responses to one of her ambitious solo overseas bicycle trips (yes, she is also good at biking alone in remote places).
What makes perfect sense throughout all of her efforts is the honesty in everything she makes, as she unapologetically interweaves her different creative formats with her personal life in beautiful ways. This is perhaps most noticeable in the outstanding personal essays she has published during her solo travels and her way of explaining how inspiration comes to her from such different sources as Calvin & Hobbes and The Great Gatsby.
Tessa has the perfect open-mindedness of someone who is curious about creativity and is not bothered by the experimental nature of The Project Room. Directing TPR’s online platform for writing and thinking about creativity can only be put in the hands of an editor who knows when to get on the abstract side of an idea and when to just get something direct and understandable on paper- er, online. In other words, the trick to Off Paper is creating a readable collection of essays and images that reflect on TPR’s current themes while grounding them in something anyone can read and enjoy. Tessa Hulls is the perfect person for this challenge.
I am honored by Tessa’s loyalty to TPR since she first offered her skills in 2012, and I cannot wait to see what she makes happen in 2015!
Thanks, Tessa (: