Neighborhood Walk / Photo Collage for Urban Ecology

An Oakland-based artist named Kirsten Strotz Hosemann usually specializes in quilts, but during lockdown she has been taking her eye for color and pattern to her daily strolls. I asked her about her process, and she said, “I decide on a color or pattern, then take pictures of that on my walk. So they are each (with one or two minor exceptions) made from images from one walk.” She uses an Instagram layout tool to tile them.

I thought this might be an interesting way to engage patrons in the sensory walk while everyone’s remote. It’d work in person too!

This project reminded me of the PLIX Urban Ecology Sensory Walk and also an old, old MIT Media Lab technological art technique popular in the mid 1990s, developed by Robert Silvers. There were magazine covers and such.

She doesn’t put her work up on a public website so I am sharing them here with her permission. ©Kirsten Strotz Hosemann



That’s a really neat idea. I don’t use the separate collage tool for IG, but I do use Pixlr which would easily do this, and be a good tool for people to learn how to do other things if they wanted to. Thanks for sharing!


I love this idea! It would work well with family programming. Thank you for sharing!


I love that this could work for any age group. I could even picture this as a storytime extension activity. After a virtual storytime on the theme of shapes/colors/patterns, families could walk around their neighborhood and look for circles or the color blue or a series of stripes. Thanks for sharing these beautiful photo collages!

A post was merged into an existing topic: Sorting ecosystems with urban ecology