The City Meets Its Nature
Realising I had my specimens of nature from the city, I saw that they lacked context of the urban environment which is what I specified in my brief. Thus I thought to go about collecting sounds of the surrounding space, which is vibrant and bustling with the life of the city’s inhabitants.
Cyanotype Experiments with My Collected Plants
After putting my pressed plants under a microscope, I realised that I needed to gain a better understanding of how specimens are presented as such, especially after my visits to the Grant Museum and Natural History Museum, seeing how they’re placed in jars and labelled – the best way to do this by putting my collection through a range of different processes. Beginning with photograms.
An Alternative View of Nature
Deciding to look much closer at nature on my walks, I took it upon myself to start collecting. In the same way old botanists used to collect plants in order to study and classify them. I used my flower press to preserve them, which I thought would allow me to press them and observe their shapes, patterns and textures – maybe even drawing from the collection.
Cropping My Observations
After visiting the Grant Museum and observing the microscopic slides, I knew I wanted my collection of nature from the city to be reminiscent of the specimens I saw. To echo this, I thought about the ways in which I could emulate the look of the microscopic slides by cropping my observations whilst walking, using a circle. I thus decided to use a fish eye lens and set out capturing nature in the city as it cropped my sights, walking around Clapham.
Turning my Research into a Piece of Moving Image
Having finished my boxset of mini-prints, I realised I had only really used material created by myself, thus didn’t include any of my initial research photography and film. I then thought about whether I could create a piece of film that is a montage of the visuals I collected that I could play out as if it were a manifestation of my memory of the second hand shop- almost drawing on the effect of the earlier tracing paper layered experiments.
Mini-prints and Boxes
After deciding my typographic experiments weren’t going to work in the form of a publication, despite being contained within the frame of the pages, I began thinking about how such a small shop contained so many objects. This made me think back to the first ever derive in the second hand shop and the souvenirs I picked up that could be used to help me pull the project together as a final piece.
Visit to the Grant Museum of Zoology
After deciding to look at nature as curiosity within the city as a reflection of my obsession, I felt it necessary to look at ways collections are presented to us. Especially specimens of nature. It was thus recommended I visit the Grant Museum of Zoology as a place that is a very good example of displaying such collections.
Layers in a publication format
Exploring the idea of thinking about a box metaphorically to complete my final box set of prints, I decided to print out the scanned images of both my distorted type and letterpress experiments to test the possibility of making a publication.
Reworking my FMP focus
After writing my own brief for my FMP, to reimagine London as a new place, and working observationally based on visits to Kew Gardens and the Barbican Conservatory, I felt like I got myself into a situation where I was pointlessly mark making and the illustrations themselves, even just in my sketchbook weren’t helping me develop my initial thinking. I put this down to the fact I had been exploring nature spaces and drawing that’s somehow made me feel like I’m being slightly closed minded.
Using Letterpress with My Text
Seeing that I had now directed my focus on using the collection of postcards as my point of development and inspiration, I thought to experiment with typography on the other end of the spectrum away from hand rendered type, using more structured type thus using the letterpress facilities was perfectly suited for that particular exploration.