Part Six of the Biodiversity Guides complete, Doug and I are now looking at more animal based projects.
Look at this gorgeous spoonbill photographed by Rick Playle at Railway Dam recently for our cover. Wonderful!
This is an excellent guide and we are really proud of it. As always with these projects we hope they give people a strong understanding of the endemic plant and animal life at these locations, coupled with a love of the landscape.
A project which took up the greater part of the last few months of 2016 was detailed illustrations for a calendar. Despite the fact as a result of these drawings I now have RSI, an unknown spinal issue, and am legally blind, I am told it's quite effective.
The first run sold out in a week.
Logo and packaging as inspiration.
Not usually a fan of a product design which is heavily influenced by the maker, this is packaging for gifts for Bryn's family and friends, so he wanted an eponymous name, and a green logo, so I had to put my own thoughts on aesthetics aside. Here is my original design, followed by the updated version.
I prefer a location name for a business, especially when you live somewhere great like Freo (and the business name Fremantle Soap Co. was available! Miracle!) My thinking is, gee, you just never know! If your product has legs and you really want to hit the ground running, you might regret using your name as a company moniker. It wont be easy to sell it if you wanted to down the track.
I also like the neutral logo, because it would go with any colour soap, but hey, I am just the designer. It has to make the owner happy. Sometimes that's the most important spec on the brief.
Part five of the biodiversity project has bunny-hopped the Toolibin Lake guide, but coincided with the state government's announcement to build a 1000km 'rabbit proof fence' (read cat and fox proof fence) around Dryandra Woodland, one of the last remaining habitats of the numbat in Australia. Sean Van Alphen and I discussed this guide for a while, and did a trial in social media circles which was really well received. Sean's photos are fantastic, and his techniques for spotting numbat are evocative. He has worked with Australian Geographic, ABC, and The Guardian, and has probably spotted more numbats in the wild than many DPaW staff. Cool animal based project which was fun to design.
I signed off on the Yilliminning Rock guide today, and it may the prettiest one yet. I adore the painting-with-light starry image on the front. The skies in country WA are spectacular.
In it we look at remnant vegetation, discuss the now destroyed exfoliated rock which was the habitat of the once prolific rock dragon lizard and various lichen. We introduce kwongan sandplain/gravel country, and the way a large range of plants have changed the soil by controlling access to soil phosphorus.
Most importantly I think we have provided factual information about the destruction of the rock dragon lizard by 4WD vehicles. Doug and I present this information without being didactic or lecturing, and in the context of the other information about the biodiversity of the location it is compelling.
A great little feature of all the guides are the sightseeing tips, and they can be quite irreverent. This may be my favourite tip:
I finished formatting the first volume of the 2016 booklet for wildflower identification in Foxes Lair today. Doug Sawkins did a huge job in photographing all the endemic wildflowers in the reserve (see the World Wildlife Fund information pertaining to the South West Australia Ecoregion), labelling the images with common and scientific names, and included some supplementary identifying features, like petal size or soil type. Across the final four pages of the 21 page booklet is a comprehensive list of the trees in the Foxes Lair arboretum. Around 240 flowers are identified in this booklet, which is available as a hard copy or in digital form.
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