• Jackson Flynn | Blot
Kyle Swanstrom is a fire ecology major at the University of Idaho and spends his summers fighting wildland fires for the Bureau of Land Management.

    The future of fire

    Wednesday, October 14, 2015

    An increasingly severe fire season means uncertainty about the future of the Northwest’s landscape   This summer felt like a scene straight out of an apocalyptic film — homes were lost, environments were engulfed by flames, smoke filled the air and ash rained down upon countless towns. During the summer of 2015 the Inland Northwest alone had a record of 52 large fires burning at once. Penelope Morgan, a University of Idaho professor with the College of Natural Resources, said the increasing severity of the…

  • David Betts | Blot

    The cost of tuition

    Wednesday, October 14, 2015

    Increasing tuition and fees creates a heavy financial burden on students   Tuition is on students’ minds. It is a check that seems to grow with each passing year, even if the 3.5 percent increase in 2015 was the smallest increase in 15 years, according to the Idaho State Board of Education’s (SBOE) Chief of Communications and Legislative Affairs Officer Blake Youde. According to the University of Idaho website, a full-time Idaho resident obtaining their undergraduate degree, tuition and fees alone in 2015 is $3,510…

  • Photography by Yishan Chen | Blot
Telisa Swan applies fresh ink to Christina Altieri, a regular at Swan Family Ink.

    A change of heart, mind and skin

    Wednesday, October 14, 2015

    How the connotations behind tattoos have changed in Moscow and on the national scale Some call it a permanent marring of the skin, others call it wearable art. Now, more often than not, people are appreciating tattooing for the art form Telisa Swan claims it is. Swan is the founder of Swan Family Ink in Moscow. She has been tattooing for 22 years and said when she was going to college at Washington State University she originally wanted to go into advertising. It wasn’t until…


Alex Brizee | Blot 
Krys Taylor trims the beard of University of Idaho senior Cody Blamires.

A Taylored experience

An old-fashioned barber shop with a new age twist   The stairs leading down to Taylored Hair Barber Shop don’t exactly look inviting, but upon walking through the door, customers are greeted by a welcoming and engaging environment. Posters and framed baseball cards cover the walls. Professional wrestling action figures line the counters and a lone barber chair sits awaiting regular clients and curious new customers. Krys Taylor has a very old-fashioned style to his Taylored Hair Barber Shop that is evident not just by…

Photography by 
Alex Brizee | Blot
Derek Eaton (furthest left) goes beyond his responsibilities as an engineering student to perform as a dedicated member of the University of Idaho Vandal Marching Band.

Music and Mechanics

There’s a certain comfort that comes from the acoustics of a bathroom. Whether starting the day or unwinding from a long one, there’s something relaxing about singing a favorite song in the shower. Derek Eaton, a fourth year student at the University of Idaho, said he has been singing in the shower for as long as he can remember.

Photography by Tess Fox | Blot
Tommy Burke, University of Idaho junior and president of the Residence Hall Association, has worn the color orange every day for the past nine years.

Origin of Orange

There were three things University of Idaho junior Tommy Burke told his best friend while they caught up after the summer on their first day of high school: Michael Jackson had died, Burke’s father was getting a divorce from his stepmother and Burke had decided to wear the color orange every day for the rest of his life. From orange sweatshirts to converse to sunglasses, Burke, who has worn the color orange every day for the past nine years, can be seen around the UI…

Cydnie Gray | Blot

Feeling the pressure — Athletes have high pressure to perform in competition

The loud smack of her body hitting the water after a 3-meter dive wasn’t something Mairin Jameson wanted to feel and it wasn’t something her coaches wanted to hear. The fact she had just flopped the dive for the second straight time made matters worse.

Caden Fields-Brown | Blot

The joy in a journey

They called him “the tally master” on a fishing boat in Alaska because of how well he could count the different species of fish. On the University of Idaho campus, he’s just known as Ray Blair. Blair, a single parent of four sons, said he first began working at UI as a chef for Sodexo five years ago.

Jackson Flynn | Blot

Connecting and creating

Toby’s enthusiasm for art had faltered. Thankfully, rekindling his love was as simple as picking up a paintbrush again.

The fine print

Blot is a registered trademark of University of Idaho Student Media. All rights reserved. The magazine is published twice a semester and printed in Spokane, Washington.