Finally, on the subject of death, this is the most moving project I’ve seen in a long while: Carbon Copies by Nadine Jarvis (photo by Matt Ward).

It’s a pencil case. When a loved one dies, their cremated ashes are transformed into the graphite of 250 pencils. The pencil case is permanently closed. You can see how many pencils are left, and take them out one by one.

As you use the pencils, to draw or to write, you’ll be thinking, naturally of whoever they’re from.

The pencil case has a pencil sharpener built into the side. The sharpenings, the left over bits, also go into the pencil case, and are also closed in there.

The pencils are gradually replaced by pencil shavings, filling the case, and you’re left with that and whatever you’ve created. It’s beautiful in many different ways.

Matt Webb, S&W, posted 2006-07-14 (talk on 2006-07-13)