Wonderpull

Jan 192016
 

As always, I have a number of projects ongoing at the same time. They’re all in places where they need a lot of uphill push time, but many of them are also paused. While I wait for a few things (clay drying time, dyed fabric dry time, paint dry time, order shipment to arrive) I thought I’d do a quick, small project. Since my Etsy shop is a tad bare and I’m aiming to keep it stocked with some items this year, I thought a few cuffs, like the ones I made for the Wonderpull at WYO Art Factory gallery last year would be a fun, comparatively small thing to make. Also someone mentioned it would be impossible for them to get a cuff from the machine due to geography and with these in the online shop, they are accessible to almost anyone in the US.
 Bits Fabrics for art cuffs
Here’s a fuzzy workshop progress photo for you. I made some small pieces of bits fabric from recent scraps and used the bunny stamps I carved up last year using my drawings from the Centzon Totochtin quilt. I’m especially fond of the bunnies with vices. I plan to do more such.

Bunny & Bits Fabric art cuff
Here is the first one completed. I listed it in my shop already so it can get some bunny-appropriate attention. I went ahead and put the snap at the common 7.5″ length, but the rest of the cuffs will be “note your own measurement” so that one can get exactly what is needed.
Smoking Bunny & Bits Fabric art cuff
Like this one. Smoking bunny. Yes, I have a lot of pink, red, gray, and black fabric tidbits. And that red flannel? Same leftovers from the More Kitties quilt.

Yea! Items in the Etsy shop! Plus, as I mentioned last batch, I really like making these. Fabric scraps, color mixing, sewing, using my carvings for printing, beading, and using the snap press = all good! I like when I can combine my multiple creation methods into items.

Jul 162015
 

A couple months ago, I showed you the art cuffs I’d made to go in the Wonderpull machine at WYO Art Factory on 15th ST. I finally got all the boxes and stamps done and managed to catch the gallery owner to deliver them. Here is a shot of them in the machine:

My art cuffs in the Wonderpull machine at WYO Art Factory.
They are in the middle of the bottom row. I am very pleased to see them in there.

If you want to pick one up locally, I’d suggest swinging by on an Art, Design and Dine night since those are some plentiful hours.

Feb 132015
 

Welcome to the last of five Art-O-Mat tutorials.

1. Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box.
2. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, to size.
3. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, thickening to size.
4. Making identification placards for your art, with design discussion.
5. Discussions on ideas for your art and restrictions to content. (this post)



Making Art-O-Mat art

For anyone who wants to make Art-O-Mat or Wonderpull art.

You will need:

  • your wonderful sense of creativity
  • your reliable sense of practicality

Continue reading »

Feb 052015
 

Welcome to the fourth of five Art-O-Mat tutorials.

1. Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box.
2. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, to size.
3. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, thickening to size.
4. Making identification placards for your art, with design discussion (this post)
5. Discussions on ideas for your art and restrictions to content.


Making Art-O-Mat Identification Placards

For anyone who wants to put their art in an Art-O-Mat or Wonderpull machine.

You will need:

  • paper or cardstock
  • paper cutting tool
  • measuring tool

Art-O-Mat Guidelines item 11 states: “Make a 2 X 2″ square placard to identify your column in the machine. This is the main interface between your art [and] the buyer. The message should be simple and clear. A brief description of your work and your name is a good place to start. Upon request, we can create placards if you are unable (or shy).”

2×2″ (50.8mm) squares are required with your batch of art for display in the machine, in place of the brand card back when they were cigarette machines.

Hit the jump for the full post!
Continue reading »

Feb 022015
 

Welcome to the third of five Art-O-Mat tutorials.

1. Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box.
2. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, to size.
3. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, thickening to size. (this post)
4. Making identification placards for your art, with design discussion
5. Discussions on ideas for your art and restrictions to content.


Making Art-O-Mat wood blocks thicker: from .75″ to .875″

For anyone who wants to put their 2D art on a wood block, but only has .75″ thick blocks to start.

You will need:

  • Wood, in .75″ thickness
  • wood or paper cutting tool
  • various paper or wood options, as noted below
  • sandpaper (optional)

Art-O-Mat Guidelines state that wood block final size should be 2 1/8″ x 3 1/4″ x 7/8″. In the last tutorial, we discussed how to cut down wood that is already at .875″ thickness. But, what if you have a garage full of .75″ scrap wood (hello, Sarcastra!) or can get free offcuts, or are really ambitious and want to have an entire sheet of MDF cut down so you can be in Art-O-Mat wood block supply for years. Maybe you want to take advantage of the many beautiful woods that are commonly sold in all lumber or hardware stores in .75″ thickness. Or, even neater, maybe you’re an actual official Art-O-Mat artist and you order your wood blocks from their site (as mentioned below).
Blocks: $29.00 (includes acetate and shipping). U.S. Only.
Photo by Art-O-Mat, 50 MDF blocks for sale to accepted Art-O-Mat artists.
(photo from Art-O-Mat, not me!!)
Those blocks are only .75″ thick, too.

The summary is that you’re missing a .125″ of thickness.
Ways to make thin blocks thicker.
The answer to all these situations is that you will need to use something to increase your block thickness. The two best options I can come up with are paper and wood. Let’s get to it.
Hit the jump! Continue reading »

Jan 312015
 

This took longer to get back to than I’d wanted, but we’re only a week off. Besides, I’m still not ready to start making my Art-O-Mat masterpieces, so I suppose there isn’t a big rush, eh?

1. Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box.
2. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, to size. (this post)
3. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, thickening to size.
4. Making identification placards for your art, with design discussion
5. Discussions on ideas for your art and restrictions to content.


Making Art-O-Mat wood blocks

For anyone who wants to put their 2D art on a wood block.

You will need:

  • Wood, in .875″ thickness
  • wood cutting tool
  • measuring tool
  • sandpaper (optional)

Art-O-Mat Guidelines state that wood block final size should be 2 1/8″ x 3 1/4″ x 7/8″. Inconveniently, .875″ thickness wood is not common, but it is definitely the fastest way to get to these measurements.

You CAN find wood in this thickness, although it is a small challenge. Home Depot right now sells kiln dried cedar at .875″ thickness, 6″ wide and 96″ long for $15.55 plus tax.
Home Depot cedar plank; picture from Home Depot website.
It is in the “appearance” section of lumber, alongside all sorts of things you could use to make an attractive cabin in the woods or luxury birdhouse. This is good, but that board will still have to be cut down: twice lengthwise, and 28 times across for each of those resulting two lengthwise strips. This is a total of 116 precisely cut edges, which is a small bit of fuss.* Slick was geared up to do some work in the garage, so he offered to make the cuts on our table saw for me. (Don’t forget to sand (if desired) before cutting – faster and easier in one piece.)

Table saw and cedar plank, in pieces.
[Cut pieces on left, pushers and guides on right.]
Lengthwise cuts are a good way to run the (small) risk of turning a plank into a table saw powered wood missile launch across the garage. If you’re okay with that risk, the whole plank will take you about ten minutes, including safety equipment donning time. If you don’t like the lengthwise cut / launching wood risk, you’ll need to cut every block twice and this will take you slightly over twenty minutes. Either way, this is a reasonable amount of time. And this is for one plank, yielding 58 blocks – if you don’t mess up any of them. If you want to do more in one session, you could make a jig to increase your ease and precision; meaning your time spent per block would decrease.
Hit the jump!
Continue reading »

Jan 142015
 

Thanks to the Wonderpull machine over at WYO Art Factory on 15th ST, as mentioned previously, some of us local artists have talked about making a run of pieces for the machine. To that end, I’m making a series of tutorials to get us all (including myself) up to speed and practice on the Art-O-Mat requirements for art to go in the machines. The planned tutorial list so far, is this:

1. Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box. (this post)
2. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block.
3. Making an Art-O-Mat wood block, thickening to size.
4. Making identification placards for your art, with design discussion
5. Discussions on ideas for your art and restrictions to content.

Now, the WYO Art Wonderpull lady said she would follow Art-O-Mat guidelines exactly, but you’ll see from the differences that she wasn’t quite accurate. I will be following Art-O-Mat guidelines in the tutorials, but will point out those differences when I can so you may decide for yourself. All of my information comes from the Art-O-Mat guidelines page and their website. If you have $10 to invest in this project, they offer a trial kit so you can have your hands on the official materials with almost no effort. However, for us broke folks economical artists, the materials needed can easily be made at home, with minimal supply budget. On to the tutorial.


Making an Art-O-Mat box from a cereal box

For anyone who doesn’t want to put their 2D art on a finished-size wood block, or for any 3D art, a box is the way to go.

You will need:

  • a printout of the template (first pic link)
  • a cereal box
  • Xacto knife and cutting mat -or- precision scissors
  • bone folder or similar folding tool
  • glue
  • shiny tape (like 3m Transparent) or very sticky labels
  • .003 ml acetate

We must start with Art-O-Mat’s official box template:
Art-O-Mat's box template, PDF.
Click to open and then save the PDF. Again, this is Art-O-Mat’s template, I did not make it. If you think is is resplendent, go to their website and lavish praise upon them.
Print out your template; make sure your printer hasn’t done any scaling and that the printout is the right size. The final box size must be 2 1/8in x 3 1/4in x 7/8in (54mm x 82mm x 21mm), this means that those two big rectangles on the template should measure 2 1/8in x 3 1/4in (54mm x 82mm). If they’re off, sort it out with your printer or PDF software until it is right.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Cut your template out precisely. You could instead rubber cement the whole template to the cereal box directly, although that could be messy later when you get to folding. It might be worth printing the template out on cardstock so it can last a couple times if you want to make more than one box, which you probably will. Trace all the cutlines onto a flat stretch of your cereal box using a sharp pencil, or a .005 Sakura pen. You want exact, slim lines.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Use an Xacto knife and cutting mat to cut through all cutting lines cleanly. I can’t recommend regular scissors for this, but if you have small precision scissors you might be able to get it accurate. In the photo, my cereal box cut is on the left and my original template is on the right. You can see that I didn’t feel like cutting the curves as shown on the template, so I simply drew a straight line short-cutting the curve and cut it off as an angle. This doesn’t affect the box function at all and saved a few seconds of my time and effort.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
If you have one of these: Martha Stewart Scoring Board; use it because it is perfect for this job. If you don’t have one and don’t want one, use a ruler and bone folder to crease straight over the dotted fold lines. Crease in, creating valleys, on the side you want inside. In my case, I didn’t want my Honey Nut Cheerios box showing, so I creased my folds in towards the printing. I believe official Art-O-Mat boxes are encouraged to obscure any such non-relevant labels or markings, although I don’t know if the WYO Art Wonderpull lady has any similar concerns.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Go over all your creases with the bone folder or similar tool to make sure your folds are crisp and well defined. Get out your glue; I am using Aleene’s Turbo Tacky, my go-to general purpose glue for papers and mild fibers. It dries faster than the regular style Aleene’s, which is great. Art-O-Mat says DON’T use double sided tape here and I agree. Double sided tape is a wonderful thing, but inappropriate for this project. Most white glues are ideal, and I bet you can use some of those gummy, resin, snot-looking ones, too.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Fold over the right hand rectangle – the big rectangle that doesn’t have short flaps attached to it. Put a decent amount of glue on the flap part, as in the picture.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Now, keeping the right and middle flat, fold the left hand, long flap over the glued flap and press them together. Check that you don’t have any glue overflow, especially on the inside or your box won’t open up later. At this point you can clamp the glued area with some clothes pins, or put a book or brick on top of it and let it stay flat, pressed until the glue is totally dry.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
If your glue is dry, fold up the tabs of your box. Trim anything that wasn’t spot on – I had to cut a smidge (1 mm) off both my short ends to get them perfect. This box is now ready to have your art piece put inside it. You may decorate, paint, stamp, write on, or simply leave plain, the box as you wish. Be sure not to add any bulk at this point – no collage or texture on the outside of the box.

All about acetate:
making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Official Art-O-Mat guidelines are for .003 ml acetate to be wrapped around ALL art pieces, block or box. Now, the WYO Art Wonderpull lady doesn’t seem to follow these guidelines, but I suggest you do anyway and here’s why. The cigarette vending machines were made to dispense boxes wrapped in cellulose acetate. If your piece doesn’t have the acetate, you increase the chances of your work jamming or double vending in the machine. Sure, it might not happen, but why risk it? The WYO Art Wonderpull did a double vend on me when I used it and NONE of the pieces in the machine have acetate. Lucky for her I am honest person and returned the doubled block, but again, a simple strip of acetate would likely solve the problem. And the strip will protect your hard work from scrapes. Besides, if you decided to become a real, true, echt, Art-O-Mat artist, you will have to follow the rules anyway.
So, now that I’ve talked you into it, you need something like this, .003 ml acetate sheets. I bought mine in an art store, but they all look similar. Plus, if it will fit, it can be printed on! Exciting!! We’ll look into that later. For the moment, cut a strip to nine inches long and two inches wide.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Here’s the width.

making an Art-O-Mat box from their template and a cereal box.
Get some clear, sticky tape. 3M transparent is perfect. If you have thin and sticky labels (sticky as in high-adhesion, not those removable kinds) you can use those, too. Even more opportunities for customization and fun! Don’t use frosted tape, or anything that is thicker than tape or might have low adhesion. You don’t want these coming off inside the machine and gumming everything up.
Wrap the acetate strip lengthwise around the long line of the box. Put the tape over the edge of the acetate strip, making sure it is snug, tight, and flat.

That’s it! You have completed your own guideline-meeting Art-O-Mat box! Congratulations!
Come back for the tutorial (probably) next week when we’ll look at the blocks for art.

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