Degraded Image

Rollover relevant images to see how they were transformed by each step.


I bought this postcard at a nature preserve in Roanoke,Virginia while visiting with my friend Jennifer and her family for the weekend.


Step 1: Stomping on rocks

Shortly after purchasing the post card, we went for a walk around a nearby lake. I was inspired on the trail. I liked the texture that the dents from the rocks gave to the card.


Step 2: Stabbing it onto a branch

More inspiration struck during our walk around the lake. While I like how the card looked on the branch, I wasn't wild about the gaping hole that it left.


Step 3: Filling the hole from the branch with a leaf I decided to fill it with something. Although I knew that the leaf would not withstand the rest of the plans I had for my unsuspecting postcard, I felt that it would look nice for one brief, shining moment. And I feel that I was correct in my assumption.

Step 4: Feeding it to a goat

Our next stop was a winery, which also had a petting zoo. There were goats, and since I had no food, I offered them some post card. They didn't like it very much, and no notable change was seen in the composition of the post card. Too bad I didn't have any tin cans to feed them.


Step 5: Rubbing a walnut on it

I recently read that you can use the powder from black walnuts to color your hair, so I figured I should try coloring my post card with it. It worked! I liked the effect that it gave the card - made it look like it had been through a lot. Which at this point, it had.


Step 6: Using it as a coaster

I got a weird look from the waitress while doing this one. It left a barely noticeable ring on the was still worth it.


Step 7: Letting a fan whack it

This is when Jennifer's parents began to suspect that I was crazy. The noise was the main thing that I noticed. The fan did bend the card a little, and reinforce some tears that were originally created by the rock stomping in step 1.


Step 8: Clipping the edges

I was sort of going for that old-fashioned photograph look, back when photos had ruffled edges. I decided to only do one side, though.


Step 9: Burn it with fire

This is the step I was most excited for, because I knew that the picture would start to become unrecognizable after this point. I really like the way that it turned out. The big missing chunk in the upper right hand quadrant was a little more damage than I was hoping for, but so it goes.



Step 10: Getting digital

I inverted the colors. I was going to do more in this step, but I liked how it looked after just this one step. It almost looks to me like it is underwater, frozen in ice, or an xray.


Step 11: More digital editing

I flipped the image horizontally, manipulated the saturation and hue, then filled selected parts of the image with a stripe pattern.


Overall, this project was a very fun experience. I couldn't help but a feel a little sadistic and ridiculous at times, but was relieved when I remembered that post cards probably don't have feelings.

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