Choosing the Graphic In accordance with my running obsession and mental relation to hyenas, I decided to use a graphic of a hyena doing what it does best, my favorite thing: laughing. Along with this theme of humor, I chose the nautical signal flag for â€œI am carrying/ discharging explosivesâ€?. Choosing such a serious flag that stands out in the nautical signaling world is a bold move in the name of humor, which is a theme I sought. The flag is intended to be a dark joke in a way while showcasing an animal I feel I relate to in various ways.
Creating the Graphic The graphic was taken from a found photograph of a hyena. Through some manipulation in Photoshop, the finalization of the graphic was done by hand with tracing paper and adding definition to the teeth and eyes to make the graphic easier to read from greater distances. I also made adjustments to the level of the graphicâ€™s detail. I then scanned it back in to print the image on film so I could create a silk screen.
Silk Screening Using photo exposure to create a silk screen negative was a process I had not done before. I applied the emulsion and let it dry while printing out the film image of the graphic to use in the exposure. After exposing it, I cleaned the screen, creating the clean image of the hyena. After it dried, I printed 4 seperate images on 4 seperate pieces of red fabric so I could have extras in case of a mistake. I let them dry overnight before ironing them to make the paint set so the flag had the ability to get wet or be washed without the paint coming off.
Sewing and Stiching In collaboration with Fashion and Textile major Kate Harnden, the final step of the flagâ€™s process was stitching it into a functional, durable flag. With pins and chalk we measured out the pattern for the sparrow-tailed square flag. Using black thread to match the black graphic, sticking with a simple, graphic theme, we sewed two back to back silk screened textiles in the form of the flag. We then sewed the nautical rope into the end with one end fixed to the flag and the other free and adjustable.