Who is HRU? Part I and other news

Time for a little show and tell, to tell you about, and show you a little, of the inside of the world’s most elaborate deck package called “Who is HRU?”

First some information. “Who is HRU?” is a prose poem of 418 words. Some time in February of this year, I made a meaningful connection that I won’t say more about for now. But shortly thereafter the words of this verse began to take form. Take form is an understatement; they demanded to be heard.

Finally the text was written, and I thought that was the end of that. But HRU had other things to show me. It was only after the text was completed that it was revealed that it could be broken up into 22 parts. Miraculously, they seemed to fit the 22 Major Arcana in order rather astoundingly well. So I divided them accordingly, and sent them for copyright, with the idea of making a simple little illustrated booklet.

I’m not sure what happened after that other than I wanted to make a little book for someone and began. As artistic projects sometimes will, this turned into a more consuming project that spanned many months. Somehow it turned into not only a handmade hardcover, but what may be the world’s only esoteric pop up book. At least that I know of.  Appropriate I guess, as the subtitle is “A waketime story for your inner child.”

As artistic obsession set in, many things had to be learned. Calligraphy had to be written, pages had to be designed, illustrations added, and then there were the mechanisms. 26 moving parts were added, some of them rather elaborate. Many models were made, tested, rejected. Many different papers were tried in order to get the tiny mechanicals to fold and move properly. The thick board of the covers had to be carved to accept the wax seals and the mica windows. The hinged spine and hidden panel had to be designed. The signatures had to be sewn in. And miracle of miracles an aspect of the construction ties into the riddle of the verse itself.

Because the story is in the form of a riddle, I don’t want to show the entire book until it is received by the recipients. There is a riddle to be solved, and a reveal at the end. But I want to show you at least a bit of it. This first video is Part I, and will show the first few pages of the book. Bear in mind that the more impressive constructs occur later in the book and this is only a taste of the introductory pages: the title pages, a pronunciation guide for some of the esoteric terms used, and the first lines of the story. I will show a few of the more elaborate mechanicals in a future update, but will not reveal all of the book, because part of the joy is the delight and surprise of discovery.

And now, with no further ado, the first preview of “Who is HRU?” The journey begins with the Fool:  “It’s a riddle, it’s a koan, and we don’t have much to go on…”

The samples for the card back foil options arrived today, and WOW! They are all beautiful, whether done in silver, gold, or holographic foil. But the hologram option is so over the top cool and so fitting, that it really has won my heart and if I can work it into the card back design, well, that may be the One.

10 thoughts on “Who is HRU? Part I and other news

    1. months, if you include designing and testing and failed parts. after getting that part down, I estimate 100 hours goes into one, as all of the mechanisms are cut with a blade. there are lots more parts to the book not shown in the part 1 videos. there is a part 2 video. but i never did a video for part 3 and the final reveal. maybe I should, just to show it!

  1. A lot of little parts and compartments and COMPLETELY AMAZING. I love little hideouts and pull strings and the colors and shapes, and and and….WoW! Mind blowing.
    dream on Judy……

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