Letter Zero.58
Dear <<First Name>>, 

One of my favorite scenes in The Last Crusade is when Indiana Jones pulls out a sheet of paper and does a rubbing on a tomb in order to complete the message that leads him to treasure. It’s rare to see a hero in a movie using artistic techniques to solve a mystery. 

I must have been about 6 when my mom taught me the secrets of drawing. It was hard. Except for when she told me about rubbings. You put a piece of paper over something, say a leaf, and then rub the flat side of a crayon over the surface. The raised parts of the object appear on your page as if drawn by a ghost. It sounds so easy, it feels like it must be cheating. 

I remember thinking, “Why am I working so hard to draw by sight when I can rub a crayon over anything and come away with a perfect replica?” That was before I actually tried the technique. Unfortunately, the result you imagine is always better than what you get when you drag your crayon across the page. Rubbings look unfinished, messy, and dull. So I abandoned the technique.

That memory came back to me this week as I documented a new process I’ve been working on in my studio. I’ve been combining shipping labels, hand sanitizer, and heat to create prints. The result is somewhere between a rubbing and a mono-print. I made a video showing some of the different ways I summon images out of thermal paper. 

This would be a good time to remind you to make sure I have your most current shipping address (US addresses only). The third installment of Postcard Zero is underway, and I want to send you a one-of-a-kind piece of art. Don’t forget that Instagram (@ade3) is the best way to keep up with my art projects and to see some prints from this process. I’ll write again soon. Stay creative.

Your friend,
Copyright © 2021 Adrian Hanft, All rights reserved.

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