Monday, 24 October 2011

Books printed with Smart Inks

The Egg Book
The Egg Book

Since last week I posted about the Smart Materials Kit available via MakerShed, I thought I'd introduce you to two works by designer SAWA TANAKA that use smart inks to create interactive books.

Both Tanaka's Egg Book and Spot Nocturnal Animals are a process of discovery.

Using thermochromic inks, the baby birds in the Egg Book are hidden in their thermochromic shell until the the reader places his hand over the egg, warming it and thereby revealing the hidden bird inside.

I simply love the idea of having content hidden and then revealed as part of the journey of reading a narrative. This approach is often used by pop-up books and I feel it would work beautifully using thermochromic inks to develop educational books for children.

Glow in the Dark Book
Spot Nocturnal Animals Cover

The second book Spot Nocturnal Animals is printed using phosphorescent ink. In the daylight, the cover of the book is blank and the pages inside only reveal the footprints of animals. At night, the pages comes to life and the story of these nocturnal creatures unfolds.

Glow in the Dark Book
Spot Nocturnal Animals Inner Pages

The nocturnal book plays with an interesting idea of creating dormant objects that are only useful under certain conditions.

Both these books are lovely examples of how smart inks can be used to create playful and provocative projects.

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