haiku design

BashoJapanese woodblock print depicting Basho from Yoshitoshi's series One Hundred Aspects of the Moon.

Haiku design manifests itself in two ways on the widesite:

The first is in the relaying of the punctum feelings evoked by two images in "obtuse meaning." A literal haiku structure was used to strip the images and relay the punctum meaning I find in each. One haiku maps a regular walking trip to a friends house late on a winter night, and the other hearkens to the departure from an elementary school bus during a light snowstorm.

crunchy yards in stride
the glow of homes, lighting up
blue–black–grey winter.
grinding wet metal
yellow doors swing wide the grey
into my knit hat

The next manifestation of haiku design, and perhaps the more appropriate for the mystory project, is inherent in the design itself. In a few cases, my design choices are an attempt at explicitly projecting the core aspects of electrate browsing. My hope is to explore what might be seen as a single, stripped-down gesture of a personal website: "activity." More specifically, my hope is to create the notion that the site is a place where I (my online self) can be found engaged in various activities. The move might end up being unnoticeable or unimportant for most viewers, but essentially it is the difference between a webpage as a display-case for activities, and a webpage as an activity. Again, I am unsure whether that looks to be the same thing to most viewers (it is an experiment, after all).

On the homepage, the main body of text does not omnisciently explain away the navigational tools for viewing the site, but instead experiments with the site as a portal to different aspects of my online "self" (since it is a personal webpage) where I am active. In thinking of my website as an extension of myself, I have worked toward creating a space that feels lived–in, where I can be found engaged in different activities in kairotic moments (some more than others). Rather than seeing the pages of my site as receptacles for static information, my (haiku) design is an attempt to see them as spaces of electrate activity (unlike the printed page). I designed the site to extend my voice as the breathing of an active, living "thing." Text does this well I think (as in the body text of the homepage), but the text also seeks to spark a kind of consideration of the entire website and its design as an active "self."

In attempting to make my website a place of activity where a (dis)embodied self is active, my goal was to get at my idea of the core of electrate experience. The site started much like a simple display-case for my vita, but as I gathered more pages under the navigation bar I began to probe what it was to be an online presence. It seemed to me that a website might be that presence, literally, rather than an extension/display of another, corporeal presence.

I say this design feature is like haiku reasoning because it sees web activity very much like an "event." Just as Barthes sees haiku reason as being about events and moments, the website as "active" space is about the surface gesture of navigation. In my website, navigation has a narrative, evoked by the main text and experienced by both the activity of moving about and seeing my online self moving about in activity.