Posts Tagged ‘binary’

leaf circles

May 29, 2009

I’ve been unable to resist doing some leaf works lately, and they have all been circles.  A circle marks a spot, and it also creates an inside and an outside, like a Venn diagram, but with only one set.  I’m not sure yet what this means in terms of why I am making leaf circles, but I am sure it is relevent somehow!  The occupation of space perhaps.




I wanted to use the white leaves (pubescent undersides) because I was a little bit perplexed as to why only some of the leaves were white underneath, only about 10% or less.  They all came from the same tree.  While the whiteness does wear off over time after the leaves have fallen, but this is only a partial explanation, since even when looking at just the ‘freasher’ yellow leaves, most are smooth underneath (and therefore not white).



This last one is only a half circle of course, but conceptually continues beyond the paving to circle the large tree on the left where the leaves came from.  I did it early in the morning at school.  The day remained fairly calm so the circle stayed more or less intact, but the centre had more and more new leaves fall onto it, obscuring the distinction between the inside and the outside over time.


sands of Gordon’s Bay

May 4, 2009



March 31, 2009




a new work with binaries – acorn caps and pollen

playing with acorns

January 5, 2009

I was out poking about in some semi-abandoned parkland near the lake recently (as you do) and started playing with the acorns. The caps in particular attract my attention. Just picking some up puts you in a bit of a playful mood. Is that because of cultural memory of acorn caps as fairy hats in children’s stories? The shape and form are certainly evocative of human craftsmanship in miniature – like a wood-turned bowl.

Then there is the binary – you see I seem to like anything that encapsulates a neat little binary – like the ‘black and white’ post a few days back. Perhaps a little more subtle in an acorn cap – but I think that any sort of vessel like form always has an element of inside/outside about it, and this is reinforced by the contrasting rough and smooth surfaces. The lightness of them is so satisfying too. They are woody in feel but so finely ‘made’ that they are very light. I guess that’s what made me want to float them.




While I am writing I’m thinking more about fineness and lightness and I think that might be at the crux of why I enjoy acorn caps. I am realizing that I am often attracted to things with these characteristics. When I was making lots of handmade paper years ago, it was always the thinnest possible paper that I was trying to achieve. Same as when I did ceramics – If I was doing bowls or something I would always be trying to make them quite thin – though my abilities and experience with ceramics usually wasn’t quite up to it so most of them collapsed in on themselves.

In my printmaking too, the marks I make tend towards the fine rather than the bold within the range of possibilities for the particular method being used at the time. Well enough of my introspective rambling, back to acorns. While the cap intrigues me most, the seed itself has it’s own joys and possibilities.


And if you love acorns too, then check out this beautiful little craft item.

black and white

January 3, 2009


What wonderful contrast between the leaf (underside) and trunk of a Silver Poplar. Not just the colour either – solidity/fragility – fleeting/long lasting – rough/soft.


I like this shot from further back too. The white on the tree is so “un-naturaly” bright it almost ceases to be a leaf and becomes an enigmatic sign – the symbol of a leaf rather than a leaf itself.

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