Art & Design

Across the Tumblrverse: Unlocking the Secrets of the Internet with Jssca

Art & Design

Across the Tumblrverse: Unlocking the Secrets of the Internet with Jssca

Highlights from

Jessica Carroll‘s Tumblr is untitled, or, multiply titled. There’s the url,, and the browser header: OUCH. There’s a rollover icon, which reads “Gucci,” a search bar, which does not seem to work, and in the top left corner: a link for Your Ad Here.

Jessica’s Tumblr roll is as classically internet as her chosen template: bric-a-brac, pretty/ugly, and lol. Jssca/OUCH/Gucci is my all-time favorite Tumblr because it shows me things I would otherwise never see and so makes me feel and think profoundly. Plus, Jessica’s prolific. She posts like a champ. There’s no getting bored or navel-gazing-sad when there’s an infinity scroll of Jssca posts to navigate; the truth is out there.

I knew Jessica must be brilliant because her Tumblr is and so I asked her to share some of her brilliance in word form. Ta da.

When did you launch this Tumblr?
I launched it when I was in the middle of my first year of university as a project because I had started writing about music. The editor at the magazine I was working for always made me review records by bands from Alberta with banjos because he thought that’s what 19-year-old girls liked; I gave them awful, sassy reviews. All I wanted to do was write about rap and alcoholic female singer-songwriters so I posted the stuff that I wanted to there as a rebellious outlet.

How many posts have you… posted?
Just over 14,000. (It’s been almost 7 years!)

I can recognize a Jssca post on my feed like *that.* What do you think is that *that*? Like, what’s your *thing*?
My blog has gone through many thematic iterations, but I think at this point I’m interested in how photo (with rare interlacements of music videos and Soundcloud posts) is a tool of narrative curation. I’m mostly into the stuff that makes people feel uncomfortable aesthetically, but I like to intermix that with things that I find beautiful. I have a lot of problems with the world, and the blog is definitely an unconscious representation of the things that I feel aren’t being acknowledged. I’m a bit of an idealist, but the ideals I hold as dear have to do with necessary subversions, whether in food or sex or fashion or art. I’ve tried to show my WASP-y mother the blog on her iPad, but it’s so beyond her that she just nods her head in quiet, confused contempt. I sometimes wonder what would happen if she looked at it alone. Ultimately, it’s about pushing boundaries in all aspects of life. I just really want my guy friends to want to fuck girls who don’t look like models and for the Memphis school of interior design aesthetic to become something that would be okay for me to dress my apartment in.

How do you find your images? Is it just from riding the wave of the other Tumblrs you follow, or do you tag search things like “penis pump”?
90% of the content is reblogged. The other 10% comes from images I’ve found that I post using the Tumblr Chrome bookmarklet. I rarely search tags, because if I like an image I’ve discovered through tags, I generally follow the blog who posted it and they’ve got more to offer than one image simply.

But srsly: HOW DO YOU FIND YOUR IMAGES? It’s all so good. Scrolling through your blog feels like unlocking the secrets to the internet. “She has a great tumblr.” I’ve introduced you to people with those words, in like all sincerity. Amazing.
My roommates would laugh because the number of times they’ve walked in on me chain smoking alone, sitting at my computer, after I’ve said I can’t hang out with them and watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians and yet I’ve been on my Tumblr dashboard, is many. The many people I follow deserve the credit. I am a only curator of nasty things.

Do you get grossed out by your own content? Some of it is gross. But I always feel like it’s challenging my aesthetic prejudices, you know?
I love the gross content because I feel like hopefully, the grossness makes my followers feel something that’s real. Gross is good because gross is a form of remodeling. I recently reblogged a Second Life GIF of a robot fucking a woman and it made me feel strange and sick, but I liked it because  thinking about post-humanist possibilities seems important. Still, I can’t eat when I’m looking at my Tumblr feed.

Yes, please…? Lots? I am as horny as my Tumblr makes me seem.

How many friends do you think you’ve made via your Tumblr?
10 real friends? 50 friends with whom I interact with on other forms of social media. It’s ironic because a lot of the ideas about “social media communication” that surround Tumblr’s greatness are something I don’t participate in. I rarely get “Asks” on Tumblr. My blog is a thing that I unconsciously interact with and I guess that despite having a plethora of followers, because I don’t take enough photos of myself and post them, 16-year-olds on Tumblr aren’t really that interested in me.

Did you collage as a kid?

What will the future look like?
The obsessions of my future will absolutely be read through my Tumblr “diary” first.