In anticipation of moving location and the entailing liquidation of personal effects, I have spent a bit of time copying drawings from old notebooks onto vellum to be scanned into portable document format. Having bolstered my "portDOCK" folder with the new files in surplus of 200 pages, I decided to organize them into categories. The precursor inhabitant of the folder was a coloring book, coloring.pdf, elaborating on philosophical topics in synthesizer building with lines that hold future children's crayon colors. Actually, coloring.pdf is also a manifesto, since the first page is a drawing of stores at the mall, giving gonzo names for these stores, to be appropriated by future synthesizer conquests. Ciat-Lonbarde, Shbobo, Tocante and Ieaskul F. Mobenthey all come from this page.
The documents I added are broken into three categories: runes, spells, and songs. The runes are mostly drawings, and if they have text it is of a marginalia nature. Spells are a combination of drawing with a short, poetic text. Some of my favorites are "welcome, obscure spidermusic," "I photocopy your brain," or "we're parties and we're ready for worlds." All of these are about synthesizers, but require your participation to make them link up.
The final category, songs, details one-page compositions for voice and synthesizer. Most are headed with the caption "song, synth notes in square brackets." These synth notes may be ambiguous, like a picture of a Ford Taurus, or literal, like neumes for pitch movement. Some are qualitative descriptions of types of sounding targets. Perform these quod libet.
In these notebooks, I negotiated a chronic need to create encapsulated pages with a deconstructive, leaky impulse to spill out. Most of the strong encapsulations became spells- combinations of strong image and strong copy like an advertisement. The more leaky discursive pages became runes, with cryptic text and a bleed into technical drawings and idea sketches. The only thing I felt I left out of the documents is the original schematics, but these are retained in actual circuit board layouts. I would prefer to visit my oldest instruments anew on the plane of circuit board, and make functional evaluations in situ, rather than deciding if a schematic is runic or spellcast.
Following are the portable documents, from synthmall.com:
runes -- spells -- songs