Item Test: A Predatory Birder at Large

Wisconsin raised, San Diego resident, Jeff Halleran, is one of the earliest proponents of The Predatory Bird. His personal blog is a veritable treasure trove of the Lesser-Spotted California Thrashers that he observes and documents around the San Diego area.
Amongst other fine specimens you will find such rare and awesome gems as reasonably new Dave Coyne clips; rampaging Blood Wizard, Drew Dezort; the legendary Ed Devera and OG Zero rider Aaron Harrison, killing it consistently.
In this quick video, Jeff puts his original Predatory Bird Lifestyle Item through some rigorous field tests. We’re happy to report that The Lifestyle Item does not disappoint.

Bleach

Backstory

I made about 15 of these Flying Gullotine WuBird sweaters. They were printed black on dark grey so the logo was subtle, revealing itself in sunlight and hiding in shadow. I sold them for around 30 bucks plus shipping and the resulting, staggering, profit is waiting to be reinvested in a vague coagulation of ideas I generally refer to as, “The Next Phase”.

the wubird sweater as it was originally printed black on charcoal

I didn’t go particularly hog-wild on promoting their existence but slowly, steadily, the Flying-Gullotine sweaters did their thing. There came a point when there were only 5 left (you can crunch those numbers on a mere three hands).
At that point I thought, “I’m over this dark-print-on-dark-fabric shit”. Time for bleach! The question was: how will these heavily dyed cotton/poly blend sweaters react to bleach?

Bleach 2

According to multiple web sources polyester reacts poorly to chlorine-based bleach. Some of the sites say it will cause the polyester fibres to become brittle and turn a putrid shade of yellow. I dismissed this as petty fear-mongering and color-shade chauvanism. The care label on the sweaters also clearly states “NO BLEACH” but this was no time to be discouraged by oppressive rules on tags; chlorine-based bleach was what I’d already bought from the shop. no bleach stated on care label
The worst thing that can happen, I imagined, is that the sweater melts or disintegrates and that would be something worth seeing.

Method

Emboldened by the willful disregard of caution signs I squeezed about a quarter bottle of Clorox laundry bleach into a shallow plastic tray and filled it up with enough water to more or less cover the sweater, gently swirling the solution to ensure an even mix.

CAUTION! BLEACH IS CORROSIVE.When messing with it please:-

    • DON’T SPLASH IT IN YOUR EYES.
    • Wear some rubber gloves.
    • Don’t drink it.
    • Don’t throw it.
    • Don’t mix it with other household chemicals, especially anything acidic as you run the risk of releasing noxious chlorine gas via molecular vandalism.

The sweater in a tub of bleach solution

I pushed the sweater down into the bleach solution slowly, so as to avoid splashes to the face. I folded it in, first one way, then another, turning it, unfurling any creases in the sleeves. I’m going for an even colour treatment here, not tie-die. I’m wearing rubber gloves. I left the sweater to soak for at least 2 hours. Every 15 minutes or so I’d move everything around and refold the sweater differently to ensure even uptake of bleach water. I rinsed it in the shower, squeezing and kneading the crap out of it, poured everything down the plughole and threw the sweater in the washing machine on a cold cycle to evenly kill the process. Then, when it dried and I realised that it looked the same as when I started, I repeated the entire process one more time and hung the thing out to dry.

a sinister gull perches on a granite window ledge

Result

The WuCrew sweater bleached to a variable chocolate brown
The WuCrew sweater Bleached to a variable chocolate brown

Analysis

Using a fairly dilute bleach solution gave some level of control as the reactions were less torrential. The polyester fibres were degraded to a perfect shade of putrid-yellow (an end result similar to what solar photons might achieve over a longer period following a slightly different chemical pathway). Luckily we are working with 60% cotton. The cotton is affected in a different manner and in this case the combination is a very acceptable shade of chocolate brown. It’s a winning result and the fact that the colour of rot is involved is a wonderful conceptual bonus since, of course, putrefaction is one of the underlying processes that sustains life on earth.

Conclusion

Nirvana Bleach Deluxe Edition

Bleach CD BookBleach CD Book Detail Kurt Cobain photos
Inside of 2009 deluxe version of Bleach

A Forest in a Land filled with Trees
The Last of the Jigsaw Decks
and
And Ambitious Photo Essay with a Loose Data Aggregation Theme: Part One

When you spend time staring at all the small fiddly bits of a project – the individual trees – you can often lose sight of the bigger picture you’re building – the spooky woods, the deep forests and the vast, dense, jungles.

Looking up at the brances of an old tree

This is an old problem resulting from our only possessing two eyes and them being rooted in sockets located strictly on the front of our skulls. Luckily we have invented tools that allow us to see the forest as a whole; or at least get a decent impression of it.

View over treetops at Culbin in Nairnshire

So, what am I going on about? Continue reading

A Forest in a Land filled with Trees The Last of the Jigsaw Decks and And Ambitious Photo Essay with a Loose Data Aggregation Theme: Part One

In the Belly of the Bird
Shipping and Merchandising

mer·chan·dis·ing
/ˈmərCHənˌdīziNG/
Noun
The activity of promoting the sale of goods.

Most of the Guinness-color-schemed-winter-Predatory-Bird-in-Hand decks came dressed in a fishnet stocking. This was an audacious example of a sales strategy known as merchandising. If you’ve bought a deck from The Predatory Bird Online Emporium then we thankyou. The chances are that prior to your deck arriving on your doorstep a scene similar to the one depicted in the following video would have occured.

There are also a couple of these manifestations of mental illness still available at Boarderline and Focus and possibly one at Antisocial

.
The Predatory Bird Winter deck in full sex trade regalia

Below is the package the fishnets came in. I’d like to congratulate the graphic designer. He or she must have huge balls made from the finest of designer brass. I have a feeling it’s these enormous balls that allowed sex and circus sideshow to converge with such brilliant absurdity. Continue reading In the Belly of the Bird Shipping and Merchandising

ANTISOCIAL SKATEBOARD SHOP attacked by PREDATORY BIRD!!!

If you are ever a pro skater in your 30s, from Aberdeen, Scotland, in the year 2012 then the chances are you’ll find yourself standing in Antisocial Skateshop with a bag of tees your friend has designed for your small-ass, home-grown, aggressive-gull-themed brand. Luckily your friend is none other than the prolific, A1, prime-cut British comic book artist Jon Horner and together over email and sci-fi-style video chat you’ve been developing a laughter plot to take the street wear market by storm!

What is it?
It’s street wear!

Which is clothing to wear…in the street.

Check it out. Continue reading ANTISOCIAL SKATEBOARD SHOP attacked by PREDATORY BIRD!!!

The Process is called Marquetry

In November 2012 Dudebarn1, Jake Gascoyne and I headed to Vancouver, in Dudebarn’s fuel efficient car, to see the #prettysweet screening. What my friends didn’t realise is that we were also going there to work. The 2nd and final round of Folk Custom Skateboards produced Predatory Bird-in-Hand-crafted decks were in need of a love injection. Fate had dictated that I was the only one with the appropriate syringe.

MARQUETRY (mar·que·try)
Noun:
Inlaid work made from small pieces of variously colored wood or other materials.

We needed to check each cut for imperfections that require sanding with some 220 grit.
considering
Some need to be finished by hand. Carefully working through score by score with a craft knife gets the job done. Continue reading The Process is called Marquetry