My sister’s band is cutting their first EP. Super excited to be helping her on this. Her name is a variation on the word serotiny: a seed that needs extreme environmental forces to germinate, fire or flooding being the most common. The Lodgepole or Coastal Pine is a tree that uses this to propagate itself. It’s very common in the Pacific Northwest, where she now lives, and there was this nice bit of writing from wikipedia that contained some great imagery:
“The Pinus contorta (latin “twisted pine”) as a species is a very dependent on fire as a mode of replacing itself. The bark of the lodgepole pine is fairly thin, minimizing the defense the tree has to fire. The stands are so densely populated that the trees self thin, or out compete, each other leaving dead trees in the stand. These dead trees become a dry ladder fuel to accelerate the fire to the crown of the tree. When the fire reaches the crowns of the trees, it can jump from tree to tree and becomes relatively unstoppable. These stand-replacing fires open the cones, releasing the seeds, and are what most species of lodgepole pine rely on to be able to regenerate”
I then went about collecting source images of this plant. I found a great image of a burned piece of branch and the seedpod (cone) in a museum collection. There was a lot of good movement and texture to both these images. The needles look kind of like sheathed claws.
I sent her a number of mockups with the photo vectorized to see if she even liked it.
After getting the go-ahead, I began to draw, and scanned in my best one, vectorized it, and that is what you see below.
I’m still working on getting everything just right. Whit insisted on having me handwrite all the text ,so there’s been a lot of trial and error with different pens and pencils and what scans decently. The handest part is the title. Since I write to small, it’s hard scaling up my writing to be the equivalent of a 72pt font.