Pocket Zoo, the first in this series evolved from Pocket Accordion Variation -Full Sheet from the book The Art of the Fold, Hedi Kyle & Ulla Warchol. A single sheet of paper is folded to create an accordion folder with internal pockets. I needed to find something to put in these pockets and, as a collector I found inspiration around me. My vintage toy zoo with lead animals became my starting point.
The idea progressed quickly, though to get the construction and narrative to work took considerable time with many prototypes. Concertina books require large widths, unless you are prepared to add joins hence why the size is small, A7 when folded. This has advantages and restrictions, too small and it is hard to cut detail into card. Size also, inspired the title ‘Pocket’, a double entendre. It fits in your pocket, to carry around, to always look at and the construction has pockets where objects or things sit. Pocket Zoo has animals behind railings and a simple narrative of a zoo keeper looking after them. The challenge with new ideas was finding a narrative that justified what or who would sit within or behind a ‘pocket’. Continuing with themes that also have their roots in nostalgia, I chose Pocket Market where a green grocer sells his fruit and vegetables from crates and Pocket Shop where a shop assistant displays her goods that sit in drawers or on the counter.
Each project uses both paper and card from a carefully selected palette of colours from the Colorplan range with Pale Grey and Harvest used in all.
So what started as a learning exercise evolved into a series of miniature books that each tell a simple story and that bear little resemblance to the original instructions, which I believe is exactly what the authors of The Art of the Fold would encourage.