Hello everyone and welcome to the first update for Alphabird!
First of all, I'm so honored to have your support of the project--this book has been rattling around in my mind for several years and it feels great to finally be making it happen. Kickstarter made me a staff pick on the first day, and I just hit the 37% funded mark so I have a big smile on my face this week. I couldn't be more pleased to have you all on board.
So let's get into it.....with a little more backstory.
I wrote most of Alphabird two years ago while on a January road trip to see Robert Smithson's Spiral Jetty. My friend Howard was driving, Kristin was riding shotgun, and I was holding court in the back seat with a sketchpad while I watched the beautiful snow-dusted landscape of Nevada, Utah, Idaho and Oregon pass by. I even made the first two birds for the book after I returned home, but then had to abandon the project because I was offered three public art projects last year and that was an offer I couldn't refuse. Even though I had a great year learning lots of new things, I did miss the interaction of these Kickstarter projects, so I'm making sure it happens in 2015.
You saw the mockups for the A and B pages in my Kickstarter video, so I've decided to just move along down the alphabet with a target date of finishing all the artwork by the beginning of July.
Please keep in mind that what I'll show you in these updates are works-in-progress. I will continue to refine the text, maybe change the names, or whatever during the next few months, but these missives will be a basic outline for what's to come. Here's my sketch and ditty for the C page:
Camper and Charlie, the Chickadee brothers Could not distinguish one instrument from another
one chickadee will be saying "More cowbell!" and the other will say "More cymbals!"
As luck would have it, I'm working on a little bird-themed installation for a show this May, and I happened to have made a few too many Mountain Chickadees, so I grabbed two to use for Alphabird to get these updates off to a quick start. Here's a shot of the flock of Chickadees with the image I used to interpret the body shape and markings:
I needed the wings to be 3-d for the book, rather than painted on, so I sanded down that part of the sculptures so I can repaint them without the wings. I made some appropriately-sized wings (see image below,) painted them black today, and will do all the detail work tomorrow. That's the cowbell next to the lower bird's head! Update #2 will come this weekend with the finished birds!
That's it for update number one! I have pages D and E in the works too.....but those birdies will be revealed on another day.
You can have these updates on Alphabird come straight to your inbox by pledging just $5 to my Kickstarter campaign! If you've already pledged, thank you so much! I hope you'll share the project with your friends so we can all breathe easy that this book will happen. Thanks.
I will leave you with proof that I made it to the Spiral Jetty!