I joined an international exchange in January 2012 because a friend suggested that I do so….you see…one of the topics was “Equations”. I was placed in Group #4 with about 8 other artists, each with a different title. The idea was to make enough editions for everyone else in the group, plus one for Sarah Bodman whose book of short stories An Exercise for Kurt Johannessen
provided 100 titles for our editions. I know this sounds like old news but I still haven’t received several books so “the file i still open”. AND I’m still playing catch-up with my blog.
It took months for the ideas to come together and several more to experiment with my ideas and find an appropriate structure; with the serendipitous gift of some wonderful pieces of wood samples, i was on my way.
I wanted, somehow, to illustrate the interdependence of mathematics and nature. Since these books were going to be mailed to several countries, I wanted to feature the redwood forests where I live. Picking through my gelatin prints of local plants, I scanned several, thinking I would play with these and then go hiking and find other material to print. I started with not-so-nice colored prints and used Photoshop to alter the colors. Remarkably, the newer colors were so beautiful that I decided there was no need to make more gelatin prints. Lesson learned: don’t give up on things I’ve made. They can be altered! Cut them up, crop them, alter the colors, paint over them.
The pages for the Blizzard Book structure were made from a single sheet of paper made from a collage. The collage was created from torn pages of a vintage mathematics textbook, then scanned, and finally Photoshop was used to adjust the colors and add semi-transparent texture.
A redwood tree printed (heat transfer) on bands of handmade paper served as the closure for the book. The books were very small (2.5 in x 4 in) and easy to mail.
The books I have received so far are beautiful, skillfully constructed, and very creative. One of my favorite exchanges. One of the photos shows a gelatin print of redwood needles and the other shows the entire set as they were ready to be mailed (you can also see the Bubinga wooden covers).