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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Feather Rishi and Hope


Hope is the emotional state which promotes the belief in a positive outcome related to events and circumstances in one's life. Despair is the opposite of hope. Hope is the "feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best". "To cherish a desire with anticipation", "to desire with expectation of obtainment"; or "to expect with confidence". In the English language the word can be used as either a noun or a verb, although hope as a concept has a similar meaning in either use.

Licensing is an interesting way to earn money on Intellectual Property. I feel that intellectual property is a hopeful phrase.  It came together one day when I was looking at an Egyptian rishi and I realized I had a huge feather collection. Like a door opening. The way I use feathers now informs my life and the time I get to spend at the computer working with these amazing artifacts is bliss. Graphic design and photography gave me the tools but the leap of faith came directly from the feathers themselves and what the ancient Egyptians had done with them.

Rishi is a feather pattern. 

Feather pattern”, it sounds so simple, doesn’t it? But some individual feathers have striking, absurd, glorious, unbelievable patterns. The time and consideration that goes into the collection, photographing and then moving about individual plumes can eat up a day. But when I see what I’ve done, it fills me full of hope. Maybe there is logic in the world.

My best digital feather rishis are brain teasers that make the eyes dance. Figuring out how the pattern on a feather goes together with other feathers, can take a week or more to solve.  Being in school has made it difficult to devote the kind of time that I would like. It’s summer, so I recently started showing my designs. I’m very encouraged. I already have a couple of licenses but I will hold off announcing what they are until the merchandise is available for sale. Before that, it’s intellectual property and hope.

Copyright 2012 Lewis Mark Grimes

Monday, June 11, 2012

FEATHER RISHI and Licensing Expo 2012

“…in reality, the Titanic’s doomed hold contained…the most valuable class of merchandise aboard, one that warranted insurance claims of more than $2.3 million in today’s currency, was feathers. The ship contained more than 40 cases of fine plumes bound for the milliner shops of New York City, and in the spring of 2012 feathers ranked as one of the highest priced commodities in the world. By weight, only diamonds were more valuable.”
Adapted from FEATHERS, by Thor Hanson

Of course, reading that I was really encouraged.  Feathers are the most fascinating objects I have ever worked with and with any luck,  with their endless shapes, patterns, textures, I can get them to speak to others the way their beauty speaks to me. With my photographs feathers are given a new life after being cast off in a molt. My patterns are called Feather Rishi. I would like to license feathers for every surface.

Here is a product design from the Melinda suite. This Melinda mug is made of cockatoo, Yellow Golden pheasant, Reeves  pheasant and black Polish chicken. Other designed products in the Melinda line include, table cloths, place mats, platters, trays and other table ware.



The lead image is a Golden pheasant ruff feather
 Copyright 2012 Lewis Mark Grimes

Friday, June 1, 2012

Passion About Feathers

College life has been good to me. I just completed a 4.0 semester with an overall GPA of 3.8. Today I have another story to tell.

Two months ago when I exhibited my work, it got noticed. I’m a new artist. I studied numerous art forms like this example of my painting. 

But Graphic Design proved to be my story. It took me a semester to get my feet wet. Suddenly with the power of a computer I was able to re-composite feathers into my own patterns. It was a surprise at first, an unintended side effect of keeping companion birds.

They were happy birds. I used to be suspicious of people who kept birds. I would think, “How cruel to cage a creature that can fly.” Then, I was given a singing angel, a canary who taught me about birds. He was born in captivity, never knew anything but a cage and if I let him go outside he wouldn’t have lasted a day. He lived a long, happy life and sang with more force and clarity than I have learned is usual. How do I know birds are happy in a flight? The best examples are the ones that return to their cages. I also had pheasants. They are majestic birds that have informed many of my designs. When I released the goldens into the yard, I learned the males would stay although they would dwindle due to predators.  Pheasants are game birds just like chickens and mostly easy to domesticate.  They inspire my work.

People tell me my art is unique. God bless Photoshop. I’m also lucky to have a great molted feather collection. If you have a rare or exotic feather and you want to see it preserved forever in digital form, please consider lending it to me for macro photography. I’ll return it.

I’m very flattered by the reaction to my new work. I feel honored that life is giving me a chance to do something productive with my passion.  

© 2012 Lewis Mark Grimes