GIFfight: Whither George Fate Spinner

"George Wither for ds106 Spinner" animated GIF by @aforgrave

“George Wither for ds106 Spinner” animated GIF by @aforgrave

For aMUSE and GUIDE to things you doth CREATE,
Spin now and TRUST the hand of fickle FATE

Geo Wither Frontspage

The #GIFfight topic that appeared on the Twitter horizon today involves the animation of images from the Emblemes, Illustrated by Geo. Wither, A Collection of Emblemes, Ancient and Moderne, Quickened with Metricall Illustrations, both Morall and Devine, and disposed into Lotteries, That Instruction, and Good Counsell may be furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation, published in London in 1635 (MDCXXXV)

Wow! There were a number of variations already posted to tumblr of a marvellous skeleton from page 8 of the document.  Conversations on Twitter have raised the spectre (sorry) of riffing the image in 3D, and so that is next on my plate, now that the GIF above is finished. However, my attention was already captured by the time the 3D discussion came along, and I was already started on the ds106 spinner, based on the image from the pages at the end following the Fourth Lotterie.

Interactive, Randomized Passage Selectors in 1635

The two spinners provide a mechanism where by the reader can randomly select a passage for review and reflection.

“Turne one of the Indexes in the Figures, which are in the following Page, without casting your eyes thereupon, to observe where it stayeth until your hand ceaseth to give it motion. If it be the upper Figure, while Index you moved; than, that Number whereupon it resteth, is the number of your lot, or Blancke. 

This being known, move the other Index in like manner, and that Quarter of the said Figure whereupon the same standeth (when your hand is taken away) sheath in which of the four Bookes, or Lotteries, that Chance is to be expected, whereunto your Number doth send you, whether it be Lot, or Blanke. If it be any Number above Fifty, it is a Blancke Chance, and you are to look no further. If it be any of the other Numbers, it sends you to the Emblem answering to the same Number, in the Booke next before the same Lotterie …” 

Fancy! An interactive, randomized method for selecting passages, built in to the book! Engaging and fun!

I used a couple of font matching sites to try to find a nice font that would let me emulate the type in the old print of 1635.

sample of font uploaded to my for matching

sample of font uploaded to my for matching

The closest I could find was Oronteus Finaeus Regular and Oronteus Finaeus Small Caps by Type Innovations, but each one sells for $39 each, and so that was a bit too much to splurge. In the end, I used a font called Experiement1-Elongated Ears by Opipick and fiddled around to make the text look aged, following the directions as documented by Jeff Finley Aged Type Effect in Photoshop (w/PS Action) — I didn’t try the Photoshop Action, but might do that another time. The result was okay, not as good as I’d like, but an acceptable approximation.

I decided against using the skeleton hand from the Page 8 illustration, opting instead to download a bony hand from Google Images and using that.  It has a bit more definition and I searched specifically for one that was pointing like the Grim Reaper in Monty Python’s Meaning of Life.

My scan through the second half of the text has resulted in about 15  selections ripe for GIFfing. There is certainly plenty of material there to work with. And of course, after that, there is the first half of the book!  Wow! What a great source for inspiration.

GIF-an-Anaglyph or Anaglyph-a-GIF

However, before tackling any new images, I want to explore a 3D GIF of the page 8 skeleton. My glasses are all set and ready to go.

3D glasses