This scrapjournal is an “accordion-style” book (think that’s what you’d call it… though doesn’t create the dulcet tones of the musical instrument) anyhow the paper unfolds in one long swath in Japanese style. Appropriately, the book is laden with artifacts collected in Japan whilst traveling by ship and stopping in a various ports of call from Hokkaido to Kyushu.
Japan is the champion country for interesting paper-y bits so filling this one up with origami cranes to hot spring brochures postage stamps and oddments from the ship was ummm no problem, fulfilling and infinitely tactile. What follows are a few sample pages, along with the covers, for archival amusement.
To remind and inspire myself, i often photograph envelopes before they embark on their journey. The fronts contain folks’ personal address (which i shoot to keep a record i never actually look back upon to recall who i’ve mailed) so i shan’t share that bit, but i will gallery up the backs – really for no purpose, just for amusement and artsy funtimes.
This batch mostly include ocean liner envelopes or stamps – some could be grouped in with dog variations or maps or Japan collection but ya gotta break em up somehow right?
Ship-to-shore transmissions with shortwave broadcasts from elusive listening posts, soundscapes from slow ships, and freeverse poetry about unanswered communiques, transitory conditions, arbitrary citizenships, invented geography, de-identification, and intentional disappearance.
Features music: “Dream World” by Matt Harding from NYOSSS (New York, Orem, San Sebastian, & Shanghai), plus various shortwave broadcasts of dubious origin, and sound samples from oceans (recorded by Dave and others via BBC sound archive).
Me, insomniatic as usual
Watching light rise
Through pollution skies
To illuminate building designed
By a committee of Dr. Seuss, Salvador Dali and MC Escher
The ship pulls out through endless gauntlet
of all the ships in the world
Each their own world
Tiny houses on giant barges, flags, cigarette and a wave
Yangtze River wide
As a sound
Cozy as an African watering hole
Herds of barges graze
Like wildebeests wary to fall into stampede
When hyena party boats of wedding revellers disappear into dark,
Moored behind elephant cruisers
The bulls wait beyond the marsupial floating dry docks
Holding wounded deer craft
Under gaze of manicured obedient flocks
Of bobbing cranes
Feeding vibes into yawning hippos accustomed to melons
Catamaran racers lean into wind, puny sailors lean to balance for the watches and cameras
As peacocks might
Beneath windmills grindingly faraway wheat
The wagon trail of floaters
Parade through river intersections
Obeying crackled jargon appointing times – subject to change
From typhoons, tainted waters, tides and an abundance of caution
Then the dispatch arrives
And like preschoolers, holding a string
The horizon redefines with tankers
Containers, cruisers, scoopers, prospectors, fighters, seekers, and free radicals
Bearing industrial names
Referred by diligent tugs
Pilots breakwater boundaries
And the wake and buoys ahead
Soon they will diverge to transient paths
Using similar charts
And common codes