As we age, we canonize and idealize our past.This book, “Things Are Never Twice The Same” is a collection and revisiting of my own personal history. There is a separation between the informative and intuitive sections of the story.
For my first round of idea finding, I revisited my grandfather’s farm, abandoned these 5 years he has been ill and now deceased, collecting artifacts of the life that was once lead in that small yellow house on a hill. I paid my grandmother Janice Kiser, now 83 years young, a visit to flip through albums and collect photos and stories. I recorded her as she expounded her recollection of the events behind each turning page.
Here are two such recordings.
I made careful note of each story with a description of each image to keep things in order. At this point I began scanning. the photos into workable digital files.
I began combining the images digitally, to test out effects and work up layouts for each of the pages. The informative portions of each page, the figures and the landscapes, were freed from their backgrounds and re-contextualized with writing. These writings are like the mantras, the spiritual portions of the visual narratives. These were inscriptions on the backs of photos written by my grandfather, Leon Kiser, pages from my great grandma Kiser’s journal, selections from my great grandfather harmon’s primitive Baptist Sweet Bird Song Book, and finally my own journal of poetry.
The compositions were unified by a patchwork quilt my great grandmother kiser made, as if she were stitching the family together. She had, by tradition, given each newly married couple in the family a patchwork quilt. Below, you see her presenting my parents with their quilt.
Once final compositions were completed, I several copies of them at half scale to experiment with obscuring the text. I wished In order to separate the informative (photographic) portions of the compositions from the poetic (written) portions of the pages, I began experimenting with color halftones. I printed the shapes of the text I wanted to obscure on transfer film, carefully trimming them to size. With a diluted alcohol solution brushed on the half-tone transfer shapes, I placed them in the areas of text I wish to obscure. With a couple of failed attempts, I learned that I needed to adjust the value of my lettering to a similar chroma as the range of my half-tone orange.
I tested my half-tone effect by looking through a photo-gel that I had acquired from a local theater, which later was glued onto the magnifying glass that became the viewfinder of the book.