inspired : shadow box art

It's been quite a while since I've been inspired (nor have had time) to hand craft anyone a gift. What started out as an idea for a greeting card turned into shadow box art. I didn't think to document the finished piece until I wrote yesterday's post on The Nabokov Collection.

To give you a bit of a background: I wanted to create something meaningful for a friend who recently had a birthday and had just returned from a big sailing trip to remote islands in the Bahamas. He came back lamenting being back in the city, missing the peace and beauty of being on a sailboat, far away from his laptop, civilization and everyday stress. He showed me a map of his sailing route and details of his recent adventure.

An idea started to form. Initially, it was going to be a simple hand made birthday card. Then I remembered that I have hidden in a cupboard, some sand and sea water I saved in a water bottle from my last beach trip to the Philippines. I searched online for images of old maps of the same area (older maps are just more beautiful than new ones). I found a silhouette of a sailboat and included his initial on the sail. I found a vial-like-bottle to contain the sand and sea water. The last element was a tag with an image of the Caribbean Ocean (one of mine from a previous trip to Mexico) on one side and a message on the other. I was thinking of this as a kind of "In Case of Emergency" box that would normally hold a fire extinguisher. The message instead reads: IN CASE OF A SEA DEPRAVATION EMERGENCY OPEN JAR.

I really enjoyed the whole process and asked myself: Why I don't do this more? Good things can come out of a limited budget with a little inspiration. Below are photos of the finished piece. I hope this would remind him of his trip and that a little piece of it would always be within reach.