Mutant Journal #4: The Evolution of RadishBird

Now, there’s a title that isn’t going to climb to the top of Google any time soon. This mutant accordion journal is green-inspired. The covers are from Strathmore’s watercolor postcards–not a postcard, but the cardboard the cards are padded on. I covered it with cork shelf-paper I already had. The pages are recycled paper index cards, bound with that great Japanese paper tape.

The radish part of the evolution of radish bird.

Accordion-fold book with cork covers.

The story, “The Evolution of Radish Bird” is told in 8 panels, no words. Last year, I was taking a calligraphy class, using an automatic lettering pen and bleach on black paper. I drew an abstract, round bird with a long tail. I hadn’t put in the eyes yet, when a master calligrapher came up on the opposite side of the table. Looking at what I was drawing from an upside down view, she said, “Is that a . . . radish?” And so it was–Radish Bird.

Over time, I decided to give Radish Bird a better backstory. He developed from magic radish seeds (the only hint is that the stars in the sky are gold, silver and purple) that grow into lovely, fat radishes in the first four panels.

The magic happens as you move from one side of the accordion to the other. Flip the book over and the radish evolves into Radish Bird, complete (and totally different from the original) and sitting in the last panel. The bird in the last panel is surrounded by the same silver, gold and purple stars.

Here are the links to the other Mutant Journals:  Mutant #1 and #2, Mutant #3.

Quinn McDonald is a journaler and journal-maker. She is writing a book, Raw Art Journaling: Making Meaning, Making Art, available in June of 2011, published by North Light Books.


The evolution of radish bird, completed.