Archive for the ‘crafts’ Category

A little letterpress

Saturday, November 26th, 2011

Some weeks ago Elena brought me a set of cast metal sorts from Italy, a gift from an old typographer. She knows I have a soft spot for typography, analog processes and old machinery: letterpress printing is a good example. I love all that stuff.

I decided to build a small letterpress so I could use the types. I checked which materials I had in my material box and I found some scraps from past experiments. Three blocks of wood (I’m pretty sure is Mahogany), brass little rods and some copper. These random pieces defined the shape of the little letterpress.

 

I made a little ink brayer with some parts of an old radio cassette player I found in the studio.

Despite typography and letterpress printing is everything about accuracy, I must say this is not the most precise letterpress ever. This type of wood is really hard and thin drills were bending. Also I couldn’t work with a precise router this time (I used a Dremel with the router table).

I made a little video of one of the first print tests:

Last weeks at CIID I’ve been involved mainly in research projects and mentoring the students on their final projects, not much hands-on prototyping. This little press project has balanced the thinking with some making.

There are some more pictures in my Flickr set.

 

 

 

Playing with a flat screen from the trash

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2010

Trying to find a flat screen for my final project, I found one on the trash that seemed ok. It has the VGA connector crashed but I used the DV and I realised that it has also a crack on the display. As it was useless (for normal purposes) I cracked it a bit more, pushing the liquid crystal move along the cracks with a screwdriver.

Pressing around the cracks random lines of pixels appeared, and also some parts of the screen changed brightness suddenly. Quite amazing!

MosaikoLab and its new tangible logo

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

MosaikoLab is a project that still doesn’t have a specific purpose. Maybe it will never have one. But in the meanwhile, it has changed its face twice already.

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Now it becomes more Lab than ever – I used the logo to experiment with some materials and the lasercut.

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I really like the combination of cardboard and masking tape, it gives a feeling of provisory, or patch. Some months ago, making the biz cards, I accidentally cut a piece of tape with the lasercut that was meant to hold the card sheet, and it looked amazing. It creates a nice effect just leaving the fill of the typeface with tape.

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This is synthetic felt, which smells really bad when burned but looks great both cut or rastered (crispy lowered surface):

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The finish with lycra is sharp, with slightly burned edges that prevent fraying:

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And I’m in love with corrugated cardboard. It’s really cheap (or free!), with imperfections and with multiple possibilities of changing the aspect. By rastering corrugated cardboard with the appropriate power is possible to remove only the top layer, creating visual effects with the cavities. Also it creates nice a shadow effect with oblique light.

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Of course I used acrylic also! :)

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And thin plywood. The dark letters are rastered,with burnt wood smell included :)

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And acetate usually used as light filters:

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MosaikoLab takes shape!

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More pictures here.

±Pole refinement (and unexpected beauty)

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

The project ±Pole will be exhibited in ThoughMade in Mälmo (Sweden) on May 14th.

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±Pole was developed during the Computational Design course at CIID in one week and it had some rough finishes I wanted to improve for that exhibition. For example, the sandblasted glass was placed over a black fabric resulting an heterogeneous grey. In order to increase the contrast between the area where the tokens are active and non-active, I painted in black the frame of the glass. Also I found the logo (lasercut paper behind the glass) a bit distracting, so I sandblasted it on the glass to make it more subtle.

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The pressure of the sand pulled up part of the masking vinyl, sandblasting an area next to the “p” foot that wasn’t supposed to be sandblasted. Quite difficult to fix… but as I commented in an old post (in catalan), I like errors.

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Painting the backside:

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And the result:

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The result is quite impressive, sandblasted and painted glass looks great from the other side.

And a nice surprise: the mask used for painting (masking tape) got an amazing gradient, resulting in a beautiful texturized piece – an involuntary and unexpected piece of art, by Randomness.

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Earrings

Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

A couple of weeks ago Elena found big sheets of thin plywood in her backyard. Backyards have been our main material supplier this year in Copenhagen. Using the lasercutter, dark-brown dye and brass I made some earrings. I also made a small box for them, lasercutting cardboard. Here some of them:

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