I made a 3d bitmap word for my dad for his birthday. This will show you how to make your own. The process isn’t difficult but there are a few things you can do to make it easier.
First, choose a word you want to make a 3d bitmap version of. Write it out the way you would like it to appear, using a big fat marker (of a color you can easily see through) on graph paper. Use a pencil to fill in the squares which will actually become the boxes. Count the squares; this is how many cubes you will need to create. Add squares here and there if you think there might be areas which will end up being not that sturdy.
This is all quicker than using a graphic program to make a bitmapped word.
Now that you know how many cubes to cut out, decide how big you want the finished product to be. Here is a cube template you should easily be able to resize to whatever you want. Keep in mind that only using 3 letters and a 1 inch cube my finished product was 34 inches wide.
I found it easiest to glue up columns first, then glue the columns together.
Gluing the columns together first allows a little dry time which makes the columns a little more sturdy when pressing into the rest of the sculpture.
The Finished Product
You may want to glue the finished product to a board. When I presented mine, I snuck it into my parents’ house and put this on the dining room table for extra wow effect.
The idea was to end up with a glitchy way of capturing images which would show the ghostly depth of 3-d objects scanned on a flatbed scanner. I cut some clear acrylic sheets and made a tank using my old scanner as the base. The tank was then filled with water to allow things to swirl around. Notice the incredible setup: Windows 98, Photoshop 3.05, 800 x 600 monitor (256 colors).
Part of the charm of the process is not even prescanning, and definitely not doing anything to the image after scanning. This gives it a little more of a ‘fine arts’ element, sort of like digital monoprinting.
In order to help sell my old house, I whipped up a little WP site full of photos of the place. I’m not really sure exactly why, but I made a QR code drawing / painting which linked to the site. The house was sold before I completed this piece, and the code links to a domain that is now pointless to maintain. So, now the link will point to, you guessed it, right here. Until the domain expires. But, the finished piece is still pretty cool to look at. (Part of the lesson learned from this experiment is to link just to a site I plan on maintaining, like this one.)
First I drew the grid on watercolor paper. I painted the ‘black’ squares in a checkerboard pattern of blue and green. Next, I masked off squares about an eighth inch smaller than the grid cells and painted the ‘white’ squares yellow. After this, I still needed more contrast, so I drew alternating diagonal lines on top of the blue and green.
This gallery contains full and detail views of a QR code pointing to this site. This was one of my first successful QR code paintings. After getting the code, I used a Sharpie to draw alternating diagonal lines where the dark squares should be. The remaining light squares were painted orange with acrylic paint. This alone wasn’t high enough contrast, so I added purple tissue paper squares over the purple stripes and white paint over the orange squares.
Take a picture of the screen to see it in action. See you in a minute.
If it’s not obvious, this is a time lapse video of me constructing a QR code which links to a video of me constructing a QR code which links to a video of me constructing a QR code which links to a video of… you get the idea.
To photograph, I used a Nikon D200 and a timer. The photos were then dumped in Windows Live Movie Maker and the video was uploaded to Vimeo. Here is my favorite QR code generator.
Normal 80s kids had Legos. My brother and I had Construx. I had the Space Series stuff that glowed in the dark, and Jerry had the purple Alien stuff. It didn’t seem odd at the time, but since he had two of these figures, he named one Alien and the other Martian. This painting serves as a monument to the days before our minds were clouded with things such as sub-classes and parent categories.
The text(?) below the portraits are from 2 different decals (and yes, I know that one is just the other upside-down) from the Battlestrike set. I like to believe one reads martian and the other alien.
The painting was done on a board covered in old Construx instructions, which peek through here and there. Other media used were ink, tempera, and watercolor.
These puppets are some of the creatures featured in The Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint-Saëns. They are rod puppets which double as shadow puppets, and are made with pieces of recycled magazines and cardboard.
This is a step-by-step explanation of how to create a pattern which repeats infinitely on a plane using a rectangular grid. I use Inkscape in this explanation, but the principles apply to any program (or manual creation, which is also a lot of fun). This works best with line drawings.
If you’re not familiar with what makes a pattern tessellate as opposed to repeat, think in terms of Pac-Man; when you go far enough to the right side, you come out the left side.
Start out with a new document. Any dimensions will work. For this example I created a ⅛″ grid on a 2″ square document.
Draw some objects. The more they break the boundaries of the canvas the better.
Draw a rectangle the same size as you canvas. You might want to make it a different color if your design is complex.
make sure you have snap to grid on
copy & paste dragging rectangle created in previous step to all edges and corners of canvas (for a total of 8 pastes)
You should now have 9 copies of your original drawing in a 3 × 3 grid. If your drawing is opaque, some of the repetition will be obscured. Reduce the opacity of your original drawing to, say, 50% and start over.
draw another rectangle outlining your canvas
paste in place
select the group you just created, then the rectangle you just pasted
set clip (object > clip > set)
Now your tessellation is ready to be repeated. Note: If your original drawing is more than 2× the width and / or height of your canvas, you will need to paste your drawing additional times in step 4. I think these are the interesting tessellations because you have to see the pattern repeated many times in order to see the original design.