Other Projects
click on images for more details
Cigarbox Guitar, 2011
Just finished reading Made by Hand by Mark Fauenfelder and was inspired to make a cigarbox guitar. Took about two nights. Already thinking about the next one since I made a few mistakes. I am musically disabled, so playing it is pretty far from my comfort zone. Even when I try and reduce music to mathematics, it still boggles me. I got lots of help from cigarboxnation.
Dragon Puppet, 2011
Another evening project when little Timo is asleep. Inspired by the Cardboard Institute of Technology.
Timo's glasses, 2011
just hilarious. Welcome Timo Wen sheng Chen to the world! His cuteness should be illegal.
Jibberjabber, 2010
This was my class project from the Crucible's Arduino class. Paired with a Radio Shack digital recorder/playback, these two monsters talk to each other. Kind of like a bickering married couple. It was shown at the Crucible's Cathedral Gallery and was then purchased!
Ivan, 2009
Also for the Raygun Gothic Rocketship's biolab. Salvaged parts from angle grinders make up the mechanical part of the tentacles. The eye was donated from Nathaniel who said it was from the effects house that worked on Free Willy. A BASIC Stamp microcontroller control the servo, solonoid, and stepper motor timing. With the push of a button, Ivan opens his eyelids, looks around, wiggles his tentacles, then goes back to sleep. Installed for Burningman 2009. Also for Maker Faire 2010 and a gallery exhibit in Oakland. Sorry there are no finished photos. My harddrive died and I lost a few months worth of files.
Update: solonoid was sapping too much juice, so switched to a slower, but quieter servo for eyelid control. Added a Radioshack remote doorbell to trigger the sequence. Really fun to remotely activate Ivan and scare unsuspecting people.
5toncrane blog
Bovinius Lengua, 2009
For the Raygun Gothic Rocketship's biolab. This mean looking guy was cast from a cow's tongue, crab legs, and bear's teeth. Body cast from flexible Dragon's Skin in a plaster mold. Lots of help from Maurice. A slow motor with an eccentric cam makes the creature 'breathe'. Painted with acrylics after priming. Some people really thought it was alive! (Maurice's dog chewed the crap out of the real tongue after we finished with it.)
5toncrane blog
Various watercolors, 2009
Got laid off, plus Nancy went back home for the holidays. So I've been busy painting and doing long postponed projects while sending out resumes. I put a watermark on the images I plan to sell on etsy. I haven't started an account yet though.
Max head (from Sam 'n Max comic and computer game), 2007
Paper mache head of Max the psycho rabbit. He carries a gun somewhere on his naked body and says the darndest things. It was fun to have people recognize me and even two Telltale Games employees introduce themselves to me. I lost the Halloween contest, but that's ok. I had fun racing down Bernal Heights and generally having a good time. I'm going to try and make an Instructable out of it.
Steampunk Telescope, 2007
Another detail of the Steampunk Treehouse (see the vulture on the metal artwork page). Torreya's donated shooting scope looked too modern so I built an octagonal box for it and a linkage system for the front lens cap. The wood stain and red velvet lens liner really added the right Victorian elegance. On the playa the telescope pointed right at the Man, but pretty much any of the large installations could be seen with it. It was very popular and 12x to 60x magnification worked perfectly. On a side note, the bucket lift I made for the treehouse didn't work very well.
Update: After reinstalling the treehouse a few times, losing the eyepiece over an over again, the entire rear part was redone a few times. Now the treehouse is 'permanently' installed in front of Dogfish Head Brewery in Delaware.
5toncrane blog
Zippo USB stick, 2007
After working on a few USB stick holder gadgets at work, I decided to make my own personal one. I've always really liked Zippo lighters but as a nonsmoker, I have little justification to carry one around. I always carry a USB stick though. The smallest stick I could find was designed by Lunar for Sandisk. It actually took a bit of finesse to get the new spring to work and the 'Zippo click' to return. I posted a few photos on Instructables as a response to someone else with the same idea but different execution.
Ben and Emilie's wedding gift, 2006
Ben and Emilie have been friends of mine for ages. They are both engineers who stay youthful. One Halloween they both dressed up as construction engineers. He proposed in Kenya. I think that's enough explanation.
painting, 2005
Just finished this today (30-Dec-2005) so I haven't named it yet. It's been sitting unfinished in our bedroom for the last year and a half. It's about that time. I don't paint often but it's fun on a rainy day. First time using canvas. Hope Nancy likes it! Inspired by various Miyazaki films.
Heisenberg Uncertainty Etch-a-Sketch, 2005
Draws a spirograph type pattern until the lights are turned ON. When it is dark again, it will start a different pattern, therefore no one can actually see it draw without irrevocably changing it. Not a big hit with today's A.D.D. world who don't read artist statements. Started construction in the Crucible kinetic sculpture class back in 2003 and finally built the box and added the light sensor in 2005. Showed at Submission Residence show and Crucible 2005 Holiday Show.
halloween mask, 2005
kind of inspired by Vertigo comics and Mirrormask. Prescription lenses imbedded in plaster. Unfortunately fogs up rather quickly even with added vents. Copper refrigeration tubing as "dreads".
jetpack, 2004
Rocketeer/Steamboy/Space Pirate thing going. Vintage power drill as gun. Carpet tubing for main tubes. 12 foot lengths for $5. A bitch to carry home in the rain. I actually had a 12 foot tall umbrella for a while. Then it got too windy. I tried using a faux metal finish, but it didn't work too well. Yes, that is a blinky bicycle light on the bottom. Safety first!
demon wings, 1999
folds out like an umbrella. I used a found broken skateboard deck, aluminum extrusion from the hardware store, a old backpack, and $60 of ultrasuede. I think they are a little too low, and there is no control to open and close them. but they do look pretty cool. Thanks to Pang for helping me sew them the night before Halloween at 2 AM.
fuzzy D&D dice, 2004
birthday gift for my brother. cardboard inside, felt exterior, iron on white numbers. Turned out great! D&D is Dungeons and Dragons, and back in the day the game used 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, and 20 sided dice.
Lightning Bug, 2002
Found vacuum tube inspired it. Clip on sunglasses, plastic model parts, electronic components, and Sculptey. Displayed in APATURE 2003.
Hellmet, 2003
Fun project which started out as fiberglass, chicken wire, and polyester resin. It was so heavy that I cut it all off and redid it with wood glue and flannel cloth. My friend Paz showed me how, and it turned out great. It unfortunately did not help me land the job at Bell Sports.
Epiphany, 2004
While Nancy and I were in Paris, there was a special French holiday called Epiphany. Bakeries sell bread with a small ceramic token inside. Whoever gets the token is king for the day. I got it. I was king. I ruled with an iron fist and kingdoms fell before me. Bards still sing of my accomplishments.
Spaceship Lamp, 2000
Modelmaking project from San Jose State. Only a low wattage (LED) bulb works or else the polyester resin ignites. Extendable antenna legs and suction cup feet. Machined plastic lenses which were heat fractured. I think UV finally killed the flexibility of the suction cups.
Pebbles, 2003
photo from Burningman once again begged for an appropriate frame.
Transformers, 2005
Actually just a bit of stenciling and graffiti on the local Transformer Room. Is it art?