What’s Your Digital Side Hustle: Series title 'Paper Cuts' (What’s Your Digital Side Hustle is No.7 of eight)

Research output: Non-textual formArtefact

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Paper Cuts No.7 - What’s Your Digital Side Hustle
H42cm x W30cm
Work on paper (mixed media)

Contemporary online jargon has popularized the term "side hustle," which implies that one job is no longer sufficient and that we should all have a second career on the side. In the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, it's evident that many of us are taking on an increasingly heavy workload wherever possible. However, the phrase "side hustle" paints an unrealistic picture of an additional source of income as a mere lighthearted endeavour, when the truth is that this is not the case for many individuals. In this artwork, the overworked character is besieged by their own inner voice, constantly urging them to work even harder, while also labelling themselves as a "slacker" for not keeping up with the demands of their work.

The series - Paper Cuts
This series explores the impact of language on mental health. Created through a
combination of collage and drawing techniques, they bring attention to the passive/aggressive phrases and words that are often used to bully and blame individuals. The works feature a clash of cartoon-like imagery and hand-drawn text, highlighting phrases such as “being resilient” and “gentle reminder” that can be used in a harmful manner. Similarly, as technology rapidly evolves, so too does the absurdity of the language we use to describe it. This language is parodied to highlight how it can make us as humans feel anxious, out-of-date, or redundant. The series encourages open conversations about mental health and challenges the notion that individuals can be ‘fixed’, which distracts us from attempting to create a more equal and supportive society. It’s a call to action to rethink the way we communicate and to understand the power of words.

Jac Batey is a contemporary artist from the UK. Her work explores the complexities and nuances of British life through the medium of artists’ books, printmaking, and collage. By utilizing humour as a tool, she reveals the absurdity and beauty of everyday experiences and the shared humanity that connects us all. She is drawn to (and draws) the intersection of visual communication, illustration, and mental health. Her practice focuses on the use of visual narratives and visual interludes as a means of addressing mental health issues, as well as the use of drawing as a research method and coping mechanism.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherPale Ire Press
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2023


  • art
  • Mental Health
  • Language and misuse
  • humour
  • satire
  • drawing
  • illustration, authorship, literature, artist's book, learning & teaching
  • jargon

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