“Prints of darkness”
Mechanical Puzzle Lid, Storage table
Before I to over analyse this piece I would like to state that I am extremely proud of this outcome considering the timeframe involved it is a close approximation to my original idea is useably and functions both aesthetically and mechanically to a reasonably high standard.
Due to the time frame and my tight budget the peace is not as refined as I would have liked, there are a few stain from my foray into the realm of gilding in hindsight I wish I had removed them to a better degree when they first occurred but I was unaware that they would sit in the grain and become more apparent after oiling (now I know). I would have also like to have completed the main body panels by means of dovetail joints but due to time restrictions opted for the but joint instead I feel these have a negative effect on the feel and aesthetics of the piece, I did consider gilding over the exposed edges and then emulating this strip on the corners other side but felt that due to time restraints I would omit this for the time being.
My proudest achievement is the lid. Comprising of Thirty pieces Pricesly laser cut from three boards of 3.6mm plywood and laser etched with a Steam punk motif (for construction see sketch book). With the removal of one corner panel my lid takes on the habit of a 2 dimensional slide puzzle (wherein you must organise the tile so that they make up an image or a sequence) by moving the tiles you not only change the layout of the lid but reviling the storage spaces beneath them. It is this combination of utility and fun design that I am most proud of, in retrieving you possessions from the compartments you will eventually mess up the puzzle at which point you can reassemble it, great fun.
The lids design was based on the genre of steam punk which is heavily based upon the styles of the Victorian era, hence my choice of dark wood and gold leaf, I feel these materials give the table a wonderful sense of weight where in fact it is reasonably light for its size. The sunken lid en able the user to lift out one lid and replace it with another design (I will hopefully be making more lids in the future) The design I created to be etched (I had hoped to have it routed but after some experimentation found this to not be possible to a high standard in such a short time) onto the lid was created in Photoshop using downloaded royalty free brushes and vectors along with some self-produced custom shapes the skulls are augmented vector stock. Due to the square nature of the design I eventually settled on a symmetrical image after experimenting with other concepts, as I felt that it was best that it could be viewed and appreciated from all sides as coffee table often inhabit the centre of the sitting area, my chose’s for the design hinged on the feel of gothic mechanical opulence of steam punk and tried to represent this by use of clockwork an skulls (a little bit obvious I know) There is also a link here to the mechanisation of our own live and how we both heavily rely on mechanisation for our survival and can easily slip into robotic routine in the fast pace modern world of ours. I feel that the lib really needed something else to drag the design from the wood (this is why I wanted it routed) I did discuss several techniques such as specific staining, or more gilding. However at this point I was fearful of damaging the piece with no time to repair or replace it so I have left it is but I feel it is a little too flat.
As I stated at the beginning of this analysis I am extremely proud of this piece however they say “Pride comes before a fall” and I did fall Due to my recent and on-going illness I was far afar behind on the formative stage, due to this I really should have aimed a bit lower which would have allowed me to catch up with the formative stage of the assessment, instead I became engrossed in the challenge of creating my piece this is a shame as any extra kudos I could have earned is overshadowed by my failure to produce a high standard at the formative stage (chalk it up to experience).
Another downside to my design is that it was such a bolt of lightning and I had such a strong vision of how to create it that my research may seem limited as I did not have to seek out to much inspiration as I was already saturated, I also feel that I should have used my blog instead of a sketch book as my spelling is atrocious however I had to do allot of sketching
To conclude I will round up by saying that I am very pleased with the outcome and will enjoy owning my table for many years to come, I have learn allot about both flock n foil screen printing and especially the laser cutter (which I shall be employing as often as possible). As well as Linocuts’ dry point. Gilding and of course carpentry (shudder)
I feel that my research could have been deeper and documented in a more aesthetic and organised way. But is concise enough for review and recreation.
I should review my project goals depending on my current situation and not let passion and pride blind me to poor time management.
Finally I would like to thank Paul, Brian, Kamal, Ben and May for their help and advice.
And special Thanks to martin (3D)