I’ve been checking out the site Make it and Mend it lately. It does have a lot of “I turned this coffee can into a piggy bank”â€“type projects, but if you dig around, you can find some great and useful ideas for repurposed materials and doing things on the cheap. Even if you don’t find anything that will help you in work, it can help you in your life too, since props people don’t get paid nearly enough for what we do.
This past weekend in New York City I attended the second annual World Maker Faire. Readers of this blog may recall I attended the Maker Faire in 2010 as well. If you read Make Zine or follow their blog, you can guess what the fair is like: a strange mix of science fair plus craft fair, with a Burning Manâ€”vibe thrown in.
I headed to the Instructables booth because they were giving prizes to their authors, of which I am one. Â If you don’t know Instructables, take a moment to check it out; it’s usually one of the first places I visit when I need to figure out how to make something or work with a new material.
The 60-foot long fire-breathing dragon constructed of scrap materials was quite a sight to behold. Check out the video detailing its construction and the story behind it.
Speaking of videos, I meant to get a video of Arc Attack, who I missed last year. My phone kept crashing, but you can find plenty of videos online. It’s pretty breathtaking to watch in person.
The Faire certainly steers towards the science and technology side of making, with lots of circuit projects, computer-controlled devices and engineering solutions. Still, a props person can find a lot to keep occupied while here. Companies like Smooth-On, Autodesk and ShopBot were there, as well as organizations such as Materials for the Arts, many of which are familiar faces to those of us who work in props. It’s always fascinating to see what people with similar interests and skills are doing outside of the entertainment industry.
I am flying out of Arizona today after a fun and learning adventure at this year’s S*P*A*M conference. I have a lot of notes to go through andÂ photographs to share from this years conference of propmasters, but I have to get to my computer first. Until then, enjoy this piece from PBS NewsHour on the Maker Movement. It’s an hour-long video exploring the DIY and maker movement, including things like Maker Faires and training in public schools.
Making and finding props for theatre, film, and hobbies