In 2022/2023 I started learning a bit more about trees. Most notably was my experience of reading the book Tree Story: The History of the World Written in Rings by Prof. dr. Valerie Trouet. And to a slightly lesser degree (but still great!) The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate: Discoveries from a Secret World by Peter Wohlleben.

These books opened up my eyes and invited me to look at nature with different eyes. There is such a richness around us. And we are doing the natural world short by the way impose our preferred ways of communication and (sensory) data registration. There is so much going on that we are not aware off or that we disregard!

I thought that was super interesting. And tree rings specifically. Because they are natural side effects of how trees grow, they were not intended for communication. But for the longest time, that was one of the most significant ways for us to tell anything about the life of a tree. So we disregarded their natural ways of communication (there are many fascinating ways trees communicate! I recommend reading those books!), only to ‘read’ their data in a completely unnatural way. Very interesting indeed…

That’s why I started working on an algorithm that can represent human data in the form of tree rings. I’m not entirely sure yet where this project will take me, but it’s an interesting process for sure.

Below you see some examples of the output of my algorithm.

tree ring gen art