Friday, November 1, 2013

"Out of the Darkness" - 2013

Inspiration for this piece came when I received a collection of beautiful ornaments from my friend Eric Cortina to be used in our "Boxcar Fair" Fortune Teller's set. I loved the look of the ornaments and I knew I just had to make a kinetic piece using them. Thanks for the inspiration Eric! 

As she pulls the rope, the 3 lanterns raise and lower. I hid a motion detector in the bottom part of the piece, one of the reasons for the 3 cutouts.
 

A side shot to show the depth. This piece is meant to hang on the wall, but it can be placed on a table or a shelf. It measures 25" x 27" x 7".


The overall look is a bit of a return to my older style - a fully painted tableaux. Originally, the pulley and rope were to be secured to the "box", but I like them attached to the "tree" in the corner better.

Her dress is a piece of fabric from a former clothing item of mine - I won't say which one.



I wanted some sort of textured background, and since I have plenty of scrap wood around, I thought a pieced-together fence might be interesting. I love how this came out, (I'd love to build one full-size some day).


The mechanism is hidden in her chest. I figured out all the mechanics before I spent any time carving the body.

I'm using 2 bearings which will let her arm rotated almost friction free. A line that runs through her leg will pull the small lever down, and make her arm rotate.


I made two "access doors" that protect the mechanism from interference.


My worktable, post-carving.


Her polymer clay head.


Her body ready to be painted. You can see the two carved "access doors" that will be pressure fitted into the torso.

Her body, ready for final assembly.

Here I'm testing out the placement of the figure and the lanterns - this determines where the mechanism below needs to be. It's always a bit of a balancing act - what looks best verses what works and how much room is required.


The back access panel open - just before her shirt is sewn up.

Making the cabinet. I couldn't find an appropriate container in my stash, so I decided to make it from scratch, (much more time consuming).

I laid parchment paper in the box in order to build the fence. The fence is made from many bits of scrap wood. I needed to remove the fence in order to properly paint and age it. Here you can see that I already painted the background.

After the glue dried, I pulled the fence out. Here it is ready for multiple applications of stain and paint.

Before I painted, I masked the "trees" off - they already had great color. It was fun creating this and I sometimes miss this kind of painting.

Continuing the painting of the box.
The bright blue is just an undercoat - a bit of this color is seen after I aged and sanded the cabinet.


Finally putting it all together - slowly. Before the fence was glued into place, I had to run the wire for the lights up and around the tree on the left - and then fish it down below so it can be connected to a transformer.

Here you can see the motion detector, and cam and lever.  I made the motion detector and transformer easily replaceable, (if ever need be).

Here's that movie... it's best to watch full screen.

Thanks for looking!

tom