This competition I am trying something new – I will not write the ‘translations’ for any of these pieces, in the hope that you might have fun reading them on your own!
This one by John Langdon was my favourite, and the winner of this competition! The letters were cut from a sheet of rubber, painted white, and glued on. I cannot attest to whether or not 1961 was in fact a good year, but I’ll take John’s word for it. The most impressive thing about this piece however, is how he managed to photograph a reflective sphere without getting the camera in shot.
I must say that I almost chose this one by Alessandro as the winner – I would have been thrilled to have received this as a birthday cake, and I’m sure Emily enjoyed it.
Believe it or not, I had never heard of pyrography before I saw this submission, and I’m eager to try it out.
I find it very hard to pick winners sometimes, and this nearly came first place, but unfortunately it took me a couple of attempts before I could read it. But I do love the concept – it makes me wonder if Otto actually carved this into the ground or if the wind happened to blow the soil into this shape.
Each letter is just a copy of the previous letter, rotated by 45 degrees (or 1/4 pi radians). It looks like it was copied and pasted digitally, so it might not be suitable for this competition, but I love the simplicity of the design so I’ll allow it!
If anybody is wondering where they can find this pen, it is called the Pilot Parallel, and they come in an impressive range of sizes. I think I have a 6mm one somewhere, and it would be hard to tell the difference between that and a poster nib!
This one I couldn’t read without help, but I’ll include it anyway because I loved the concept. It’s written in Morse Code, and it says Annual Earning – Annual one way and Earning the other! The issue is that there are no spaces between the letters so there are many different ways you can group the dots and dashes, meaning that attempting to read it took a lot of trial and error, and I could not manage it!
If somebody could find a clever solution to this problem that would be fun – and this opens many possibilities for new ambigram formats. How about a braille ambigram? Or a semaphore one?