Missed connections fuel illustrator's imagination

Thu Oct 6, 2011 10:41am EDT
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By Nick Olivari

NEW YORK (Reuters) - "Billowy Red Scarf Girl," "Hipster Chick Who Passed Gas," "Looking for the Hot Girl in the Pink Dress," and "Seeking Girl Who Bit Me TWICE".

These are some of the headlines taken from websites for people who've been smitten by chance encounters but who failed to pluck up the nerve to ask for a second meeting at the time.

Long the subject of movies, books and miscellaneous columns of newspapers, the Internet has further empowered those regretting they didn't take action initially, to seek a second chance.

For Brooklyn, New York-based illustrator Sophie Blackall, 40, the adverts provide the fodder and inspiration for her book "Missed Connections: Love, Lost & Found."

"Moments of intimacy with strangers are minor detours we rarely explore, but those moments make us feel alive, and human, and part of something greater than ourselves," said Blackall. "They connect us to each other."

The illustrations are Blackall's interpretations of the adverts she read after her own one-sided missed-connection on a New York subway train in March, 2009.

On exiting the carriage, one man mouthed "missed connections" back to Blackall who then went home and checked the Internet.

"Missed connections take place on street corners and elevators, in emergency rooms and dog runs, in line at the grocery store and at Laundromats," said Blackall. "Basically everywhere human beings collide, but especially in places where we are forced to stay still a while. Waiting rooms and airport lounges and every form of public transport."   Continued...