Thursday, October 15, 2009

Seeds of Inspiration

DSC02656 Seed of Inspiration

The midterm assignment in my European Floristry class is to create a floral wall hanging. We must explain our inspiration, the flowers must be easily swapped out, and we must use skills and concepts we learned in the class so far. Recycling is one of the key concepts we learned about in this class. This is what I submitted.

The ability to set our ideas in print is a concept unique to our species. It began as cavemen depicted their conquests against the mammoth or bison on the walls of their dwellings. Fast forward thousands of years and we see Egyptians scribing their daily lives on papyrus scrolls. Medieval monks illuminated the hand-lettered manuscripts of religious ideals in exquisite detail. Gutenberg transformed the printed page by inventing the printing press with the use of movable type. The fonts of the movable type were stored in drawers like these; each cubbyhole holding a letter or punctuation mark. The printer would select the letters and string them together forming words, then sentences, then ideas. These drawers held the seeds of inspiration, waiting to be expressed onto the printed page. With the advent of electronic typesetting and the vanishing printed page, font drawers are a relic of the past, relegated to flea markets and dusty antique shops. How many seeds of inspiration have they held?
What if this drawer is repopulated with new seeds of inspiration?
***
I’ve owned two font drawers for close to ten years now. In the summer I like to fill them with many different kinds of seashells and in the autumn I love to fill them with findings from my walks.
I lined each cubbyhole with yellow cardstock which were left-over response cards from my wedding invitation. I chose yellow because it showed the best contrast to the stars of the show: the seeds. Most are held in place by tension alone, others are tacked down with glue dots. Most of the seeds are newly collected this month but some I’ve had for a few years. Only one item was purchased for the purpose of this project. One cubby has a non-seed item. The seeds are secured with either Elmer’s glue or glue gun. The fresh berries are in water tubes.
This pavé design uses an analogous color scheme, ranging from green to yellow then orange and red. The color is distributed along the diagonal, providing a line of movement, with brown neutrals in opposing corners. The seeds are loosely grouped by genus while striving to achieve good contrast in texture and color between neighboring cubbies. The repeating acorns and berries provide rhythm to the piece.
I’ve always wanted to hang these drawers on the wall and have the ability to change them easily with the seasons, so I thank you for this assignment.
Click on the photo to see a partial list of the seeds used.

In the spirit of recycling, this post is also submitted for Blog Action Day. With the exception of one very large, hairy acorn, all materials used for this project were either found objects or materials I already had on hand. Won’t you join me and close to twelve thousand other bloggers in sparking a discussion about climate change?

12 comments:

jeannette stgermain said...

I own a printbox (font drawer)and used it to hang minitiure things in it, like tiny vases, pots, etc., but never got to it to hang it on the wall in the US. For my new house I like to hang it again - don't know yet what will go in it:)

CC said...

Gorgeous, both the idea and the execution.

I've got 2 old job cases in a closet.......hmmmmm.

What I lack is wall space to hang them on. ;-)

Marilyn Miller said...

Love your font drawer. I once had a font drawer and in a moment of cleaning got rid of it. What a lovely use to change with the seasons.

jtroth said...

What a wonderful piece! Thanks for showing it - Janet

Vagabonde said...

This is a very original and creative hanging.

dutchbaby said...

Dear jeannette,
I can't wait to hear what you decide to do with your box.

Dear CC,
I have the same issue with wall space as you do. That's why I think these drawers will have to continue to live on my coffee table for now.

Dear Marilyn Miller,
I commend you for having the discipline to get rid of your font drawer.

Dear Janet,
Thank you! Perhaps you and your husband can fill a box like this with tiny stones... Thanks for letting me know you came by!

Dear Vagabonde,
Thanks! I loved creating it.

Yoli said...

I agree, gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous execution. Climate change has been a topic dear to my heart for years. I feel that there is a large number of people who have taken this on to make fun of certain political figures, hence it is being dismissed as not proven, as something that has a season. You have no idea how many heated conversations I have had.

dutchbaby said...

Dear Yoli,
Thank you! It's unfathomable to me how anyone can even deny that climate change should be of our utmost concern.

Patricia said...

I love your construction. Seeds and plant forms are such gorgeous objects, what a great idea to gather them together so that you can compare and contrast the exquisite shapes and textures.

We also have a type tray filled by my husband with an amazing array of tiny things and thirty years of dust bunnies!

Thank you so much for coming to my site. We will go see masks together some time!

robin bird said...

oh oh oh!! diana this is music, art, life! i love the beautiful way in which you composed your drawer. you must have enjoyed this process immensely. i can see you all bent over the little squares concentrating an careful placement and loving each step!

p.s. i would love to commiserate on photography any time my sweet friend. and i agree in person would be the vert best way to do that ;) but... just in case something is burning a hole in your mind about taking pictures...a correspondence and phone call are always welcom.
XO

Relyn said...

Oh, this project is so you. So you! It is creative, meticulous, innovative, and beautiful. And it combines your many passions. I love, love, love it!

dutchbaby said...

Dear Patricia,
Thank you so much for your observations. You wouldn't believe the size of the dust bunnies I had to wash off before I started this project.

I would love to look at masks with you!

Dear robin bird,
I bet you could picture me bent over - and you were absolutely right. I was purring the whole time.

Thanks for offering your expertise. I feel foolish for passing up the opportunity when you were here.

Dear Relyn,
Aw shucks, thanks!

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