Spotlight gives me an opportunity to showcase a particular image or set of images. Close-up photos can display details from larger pieces. Background stories about the concept, inspiration, circumstances, or development of a piece can be shared, including progressive images of a work-in-progress.

Spotlight library: Is More ThanInterconnectedRivers in the SkyThe Cost of Soft

"Is More Than"

"Is More Than" is a photo collage from my Folding and Mending portfolio. The title references a quote by forest ecologist, Suzanne Simard in her book Finding the Mother Tree:

"The forest is more than a collection of trees. It is an integrated whole... individual species organize into complex community structures that promote the fitness of the whole group."

 The four images collaged together in "Is More Than" were captured at different times and locations on a hike through an Oregon Forest. They are linked together, just as all the trees and plants in the forest are connected through an underground root and fungal system. Biodiversity is key - all species are supporting each other by sharing nutrients and carbon. 

"Is More Than" is 18" high and 42" long and consists of four individual prints collaged together.  Below you can see the individual prints before they were combined. The two on the right have already been stitched together.

In the Folding and Mending series, my hand-folded, burned, and stitched prints are a way of expressing “the world folding in on itself” from the impacts of climate change. A prototype is made for each piece prior to the printing and construction of the final work. The prototype acts as a guide for how the prints will be treated -  where they will be folded, torn, stitched, scorched with fire, and collaged together. These treatments are all done by hand and cannot be exactly replicated, so each final piece is a unique variation, even though the same four prints are used.  In the detail below, you can see the folds and scorched edges of the prints on the left.

 The folds in the two center prints below enhance the continuity between them, emphasizing the concept of the forest as an integrated whole.

The stitching in the Folding and Mending images is a metaphor for the repairing and rebuilding we must do to make our world whole again. In this piece, the choice of thread color along with the placement and flow of certain stitches and threads mimic the branches of the trees. 

This low-angle detail gives an idea of the three-dimensional profile of the piece - you can see how the folds are raised from the surface. These pieces are generally presented in shadow-box frames to protect the edges.

I hope you enjoyed this Spotlight on the concept and making of "Is More Than."  You can view more images from the portfolio in my Folding and Mending gallery.
Please feel free to send comments or questions via my Contact Page.

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