Sparkle and Spin by Paul and Ann Rand is wonderful children’s book simply and expressively about words. But, I wondered what the experience would be if the book expressed more of a story, and what that story might look like if it were based off of the current illustrations. Quickly, and without preparation or peaking ahead, I rewrote each spread of Sparkle and Spin, creating a new story.
But, what would the experience be if I treated this physical book as a digital process? I photographed each page of Sparkle and Spin using the Hipstamatic app on my iPhone. Per page, I inserted the new written content into the code of each new image, resulting in the new imagery.
The new written content exists in the code of the image of the old content, creating new content. It’s a very circular process that thoroughly excites me.
Continuing, I created my own "operating system," ML DOS, which attempts to recreate the book Sparkle and Spin due to a “system error.”
After failed attempts to load all aspects of Sparkle and Spin, images and written content, ML DOS successfully reconfigures the entire book— though, the reconfigured content is the corrupted new images of the old content paired with my new written content.
If this were a digital experience, the user would click a button when presented with a system error. In this case, the reader is prompted at both the beginning and end of the book with physical reaction based errors from ML DOS, such as, “turn the page to attempt file recovery” and “close book NOW to avoid further corruption!”
The resulting book embraces the emergence of the old content with new content through a new narrative and a new, curious experience.
Original cover design by Ann & Paul Rand
Original book cover photographed using Hipstamatic app. The next step included opening this .jpg in a text editor. Then, when presented with the code of the image, I randomly inserted the text content of the cover: "Sparkle and Spin," "A book about words," and "by Ann & Paul Rand."
Example of unused cover image; an "out take."
In the end, there were about an average of 10 out-takes per any given page spread to achieve a desired result.
Chosen, desired result for new cover image.
After desired image achieved, image is converted to black and white.