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A Bright Idea!

March 30, 2017

It first caught my eye on a Facebook post: A handmade, paper diorama featuring electronic-music composer Delia Derbyshire of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, cartoonish yet dignified, lost in her work as she manipulates a tape machine (perhaps arranging the elements that would be used in the theme for Doctor Who). I had to have one! A few minutes of Interweb sleuthing led me to the designer, Sean Bright.

Bright, who specializes in illustration and model making, offers a wide variety of handmade items via the heykidsrocknroll shop at Etsy. There you will find pop-up cards, dioramas, string puppets, and felt dolls featuring a remarkably varied list of artists—from Adam Ant, David Bowie, and David Byrne to Klaus Nomi, Roxy Music (with Brian Eno on VSC3), and Stevie Wonder.

But listed among the pop icons are lesser known figures that only nerdy folks like us would recognize. What gives?
“Delia Derbyshire and Raymond Scott both appeal to me as being symbolic of the optimistic, forward-looking culture that seems to have been characteristic of their times—the post-war period through to some time in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s,” Bright explained via email. “There’s a nice mix of ultra-modern technology and a handmade, make-it-up-as-you-go-along spirit in that period which I find really inspiring. Plus, them old, analogue machines just look really cool!”

Indeed they do! Bright also showed me an exceptionally beautiful card-model of Daphne Oram, surrounded by paper re-creations of analog tape reels and vintage audio gear. You can view it and many other Bright creations by visiting cargocollective.com/SeanBright.

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