The sometimes daunting, monolith quality of the conventional flower bouquet is deconstructed and scientificified (Dear English Language, Please accept my word. Best, Noah), with the intent of exploring some simple floral and plant arrangements that move beyond the standard bouquet and into the "flower field".
Step 1: Find and Dismantle a Shadow Box Frame
I used a shadow box along these lines that had wooden spacers to adjust the depth of the backer to accommodate different sized objects to store in the frame - perfect for supporting the test tubes.
Once you've got the shadow box in hand, remove the glass panel and support backer and keep them for a future project. Depending on the style of shadow box, this can be done by removing the small nails that hold the glass in place, and simply removing the rear of the shadow box so that's it's just stripped down to the frame and nothing else.
Step 2: Procure Test Tubes and Measure
Once you've found some appropriate glassware, carefully measure each of your test tubes, since in my experience, they are all slightly different diameters, and it's crucial that the supporting panels hold the test tubes snugly.
I got three different sizes of test tubes thinking that it might be nice to hold different size flowers, but I think if I could do it over again I'd get test tubes of all the same size so everything would be interchangeable.
Step 3: Design and Cut Supporting Panels
I used Corel Draw and a laser cutter to design and quickly cut two identical panels that were exactly the same size as the glass that was removed from the frame was - just with a few holes cut out in them to receive the test tubes.
Having a laser cutter helps this step of the project immensely, but you can of course simply drill out the acrylic panel and then sand/file the final bit down until the tube fits in perfectly. Or, since the test tubes should be a standard metric size, simply buy that exact diameter drill bit so that it fits just right.
Step 4: Assembly
I then headed over to the Oakland Flower Market and picked up a couple different colors of Fuji Mums. Why Fuji Mums? Because I liked they way they looked, they came in multiple colors and were the right size of course!
I trimmed down the stems to a uniform height, filled the test tubes with water, carefully inserted a flower into each one, and then arranged the vials into the frame.
I tried to create a field of color and texture with the mums with this first attempt, but it's pretty clear that the variations on flower arrangement are limitless.
Step 5: Enjoy
The configuration below reminds me of a traffic light. When the flower die, I think I'll place some succulents inside the test tubes so that something living can actually grow and thrive in the vase.
Future vases could include a larger matrix of vials and could display simple (very simple), highly pixelated words and even images. Heck, if we can round up 2,073,600 (1920 x 1080) flowers and a big enough frame, we can make an HD flower display!