Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Story Behind Seatcheck Art and Hudson A.Tannis

This is a story about  Hudson A. Tannis.  He is a conductor for the LIRR in NYC . My husband is a friend of his and that is how I met him . He is a artist . His his tools are a seatcheck puncher and a seatcheck ticket . He does a little show on the train when he is working .  He did this show for my kids the first time we met him . The kids LOVED him . He tells funny jokes and just can make them laugh . This amazing work he does he now has on t-shirts . 

This is Hudson's story in his words . 
 I would like to tell you a little about myself before I continue.  I was born in ST. Vincent and The Grenadines and came to the United States when I was a little boy.  I had a happy childhood with good friends. After High School I went to College.  I earned an associates degree at Queens Borough Community College.  Afterwards I attended York College where I later graduated with a B.A. in Marketing.
After College I worked at UPS as a O.M.S. Supervisor and ToysRus as a Receiving Supervisor.  While working at ToysRus I got a chance to see how kids interact with others.  I got to see what made them happy, what peeked their curiousity and what bores them.  Several years ago after passing  a series of tests I got a job at the Long Island Rail Road as an Assistant Conductor.  The first few years are spent on learning your job and getting along with your co-workers.  Then after that you have to start studying again to qualify as a Conductor.  After you graduate and receive your Conductor Diploma you feel a sense of accomplishment, which is felt every two years when you requalify.
Now that I was a qualified and owned my own assignment I got to see the same passengers everyday.  Now I had the time to make souviners on my break and have them ready for the kids on the train.  I gave out souviners to kids to make their train experience more enjoyable and to help them better pass the time on long train rides.
When giving out souviners in December 2007 I was discovered as an Artist by Amy Cohen.  Mrs. Cohen was a Art Teacher at Huntington High School, where she invited me to do my first presentation as an Artist.  So began the beginning of Seat Check Art and the series they belong to.  Each Seat Check would belong to a series of difficulty, love, or just fun.  All Seat Check Art is made from my work punch that is shown in my blog.
In 2008 when I did my first presentation for Mrs. Cohen I had five series.  Currently there are 16 series in 6-12 are done but their names are not yet set.  Now when i give out the souviners on the train i do an entire interactive role play with the parents and kids.  This makes the encounter with me (the best Conductor) more memmorible and life changing.  Most of the ideas for the series come out of my mind but sometimes i get an idea or to from a passenger.  I try to do one presentation a year so it never seems like a job just something i love to do.
For the future i plan to finish series 13-16 which are absolutely amazing.  Currently my Seat Check Art in done in positive and negative space.  Series 13-16 go beyond the normal and are almost unimaginable.  When you see them you will not be able to comprehend that they were made with my work punch.  Until the future comes check back every week to see a new past and present of Seat Check Art design.

                                                       Seatcheck Art