In reworking and exploring further into the stein poem created during the font book project, I began by looking further into the noun used at the beginning of the stein poem (thunderbolt) and then the last sentence/word used at the end of the poem (thunderstruck). The work sheets below are just some basic thoughts I had while exploring:
I felt that overall the words "Energy" and "Realization" were the most interesting and thought provoking that came out of the brainstorming shown above. From there I formed the sentence "It takes energy to realize things"; and began formulating what that sentence would look like using various principles of design. To do this I sketched out small thumbnails on tracing paper, shown below:
After completing this exercise I then began layering them together to see which two principles I felt best fit together to illustrate an abstract image of my sentence and stein poem. The two principles I felt fit best were "proportion" and "scale"; from there I created my first iteration of the reworked stein poem shown below:
In writing out the poem, I chose to write it various times in different fonts I felt may work with the overall feeling of the poem (further exploring the world of fonts); leaving gaps in between that I would use to fill in with a different types of fonts facing the opposite direction. I also chose to place the words vertically in hoping to make it harder to read and therefore help create the illusion that the poem is there, but not as important as the overall feeling the illustration is trying to convey to the viewer-which is completely up to them to decide upon.
After creating this piece, it was brought to my attention that the yellow portion of the illustration should be layered to add more visual interest, which I also agreed on, so I reworked it and came up with the next rendition:
Its hard to see the layering due to the scanner used, but behind the yellow portion is a faint view of the same poem, worked in further font variations (this time horizontally to contrast against the vertical lines, yet still unreadable to the eye due to it being layered by the yellow hue).
The following image is what was produced:
In creating this, I asked myself, "how can you convey a faint layer like the yellow portion of your poem"? Making me think of a man a woman dancing together-or more so, at the same time. The man having a "heavier" footprint than that of a woman. I then tried to further illustrate this to the viewer by making the mans foot a heavy shade of black while the woman (shown wearing heels-another "delicate" portrayal) in a sliver/light black tone.
From there I began constructing a storyboard and music video illustrating this dance visually.
The storyboard created is shown below:
After completing the storyboard, I began working on the video itself. I decided to construct the video using stop-motion pictures, helping to capture lights movements through space. I felt because my Stein poem was about lightening/thunder, and the song being techno, I would stick with the notion of light; choosing not to capture a human figure dancing through space as I felt it didn't fully relate to the overall concept of my previous work and song.
The following link shows the final video created for the dance. (Click on the word "link").
From there, I worked on three-dimensional models that I felt represented the video, song and poem all in one, and came up with the following 10 iterations:
The models were made out of white polymer clay and yarn.
After working on the models I selected the one I felt most drawn to, and drew out/modeled a plan/blueprint for the wood structure I would later be creating in the wood shop.
In drawing this guide I started by measuring the width of the wood I'd like them to be when finished. Then slowly, using a pencil, worked the shapes around like I wanted them. After I liked the layout I inked the shapes in with a sharpie and drew them out again on the wood I would be cutting in the wood shop the next day so that everything would (hopefully) fit together.
The next day I began cutting the wood and working on the physical structure:
*The inspiration behind this design is my idea of how light beams would/could move through space. The end result of my design reminds me a bit of the Enterprise going to warp in Star Trek... (Which I like).
After cutting and working out each piece in the shop, I laid it out on a table and made sure they fit well together, which helped me further fine tune and polish things to be in the place I'd like them to be.
From there I began thinking about the next step: painting. After some thought, I came to the realization that seeing the wood grain is helpful in the "movement" of the wood; further helping with the feeling of movement I'm trying to portray with the "light" idea behind all these pieces. So, I changed my plans, and began thinking about stains, how that would work and possibly be better than my original idea of paint.
After settling on the idea of stain, I then began thinking about various colors of possible stains available (which required a trip to the hardware store). I settled on 4 different tones-two different walnuts, one lighter, one darker, an American pine and a shade of blue paint stain. I settled on these colors knowing I would use the blue as the background to help emphasize the "light beams" and the three shades of wood stains to show different colors in light as they moved through "space".
After the color selection, I began experimenting with the different shading depths and techniques:
I enjoyed the staining process a lot, I found it to be very relaxing and educational (as it had been the first time I'd ever stained wood).
From there I began staining the actual pieces and glued the project together using a heavy duty wood glue.
Once this portion of the exploration was complete, I then began thinking about how all these factors would play into a pattern that could be printed on fabric.
Keeping in mind the original song, both poem iterations, the dance and music video, the wood piece and colors used to stain the wood, I made up various pattern sketches and then further fine tuned and combined the ideas from them (and my past work) into a final pattern using Photoshop.
Pattern sketches done on tracing paper.
In the final pattern design (shown above) I incorporated the poem by taking the words thunderbolt and thunderstruck and illustrating that in the "explosion" you can see in the middle of the pattern. I incorporated the dance by using the various hues and circular shapes. The wood project can be seen in the texture used in the back and colors as well. When this pattern it multiplied on the fabric it creates a grid which references the song. (The song is from the Disney movie Tron, which is all about being on a grid in a computer program).
I also took inspiration from the sketches above, which you can see in the striping, circles, wood etc.
The fabric printed is shown below:
The fabric I chose to print on was an organic cotton blend that I felt looked nice online in the preview swatch. The background printed a tad bit dark, which could be due to the fabric blend-but overall I'm very happy with the outcome.
In completing this exploration and looking back, I have to say I really enjoyed this entire process of exploring the same idea(s) in different mediums. I'd never done this before in the past with my personal creations-and feel this was a great learning experience that has opened my "third eye" to thinking about things in multiple ways and what that could mean or look like.
Also, I have to say my favorite portion of this exploration has to be the pattern development. I think that's due to my love of all things textile.
Other blog posts that relate to the same song/process: