Thursday, 23 November 2017

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Maker Faire Galicia Shines a Light on Community and Industry 4.0

A small sampling of the wonders that will be on display at Maker Faire Galicia this weekend.

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Understanding How a Watch Works

A mid-20th century industrial film explains how a watch works.

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It's Almost Time For Hour of Code



Hour of Code is coming December 4th-11 so be sure to take part in their online activities and let your local schools know how easy it is to join up. In addition this year I will be hosting a littleBits & Lego WeDo workshops after school for drop in activities.  One of my favorite robots, Dash will probably make an appearance as well (shhhh don't tell Cozmo).

littleBits has been doing a great job putting educators and technology business reps together for webinars so be sure to become a part of their email list. I recently attended:

How to Host An Epic Hour of Code

They are also adding lots of content to their library community blog like this post from one of their Global Chapters including Educators Guide with lesson plans to help kick start your littleBits programming.  One thing I took away from the webinar that I didn't know was Scratch is also making lesson plans to guide educators in using their products and hosting meetup groups for in person collaboration all over the US. It makes sense!




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“Death Star Dad” Returns With A Massive Millennium Falcon On His House

Behold this 28-foot Millennium Falcon that hovers over the roof of a neighborhood home. It's impressive...most impressive.

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Detect Lightning with a Simple Circuit

Lightning throws off all kinds of interference, and some of them are actually very easy to detect with just a circuit.

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Tuesday, 21 November 2017

E-Paper Hacking with Ben Krasnow

Exploring the latest generation of e-paper, how it works, and how you can program and hack the display.

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Capture Moving Timelapse Video with this Motion Control Camera Slider

The best way to take your timelapse videos to the next level is to have the camera move while it's capturing the video. It's tricky but can be done.

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Fat Brain Toys Announces Kidventor Winner

Check out Alexander, the winner of Fat Brain Toys's KidVentor contest. He created Aeropong, a ping-pong and tetherball hybrid.

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Edible Innovations: Transforming Food Waste into Fashion

These two entrepreneurs designed Orange Fiber, a textile that is made from orange peels that would otherwise be thrown into the trash.

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Monday, 20 November 2017

Finding and Processing Fatwood

Get your campfires started quicker and more easily using fatwood.

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If Your Local TechShop Closed, Here Are Some Resources For You

Find local groups, spaces, and programs

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New Report Heralds Makers as a Powerhouse for Local Economies

The maker community could be a key force in developing strong local economies during fraught financial times, according to a new report.

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Maker Pro News: Multi-Tasking Robots, Making that Matters, the Amazon Apparatus, and More

Last week saw some cool multi-tasking robots, creators who were making a difference, and startups struggling against Amazon.

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Open World: Bangalore’s Maker Scene

The Maker Scene could address the disparity between the need for affordable innovation and the drive for high tech development.

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This Week in Making: Parkour Robot, Video Game Papercraft, and Adam Savage Maker Box

This week, watch a robot do parkour, craft video game characters out of paper, or buy a box filled with tools handpicked by Adam Savage.

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Sunday, 19 November 2017

Maker Faire Shenzhen 2017 — It’s a Wrap!

It had been two years since my last Maker Faire Shenzhen, and I was thrilled to see the number of hands-on activities, female makers and their projects and families attending the event. 

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My Apology to Naomi Wu and the Make Community

We've heard from the community, and we're moving forward with an action plan.

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10 Projects from 10 Different Countries at Maker Faire Rome

For three days in a row, this year being December 1 through 3, makers from all over the planet convene at one of the largest DIY festivals in the world.

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Saturday, 18 November 2017

Weekend Watch: Tech-Nic-Allie Speaking

A young inventor shows off her clever creations and the tools and techniques she is learning.

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Friday, 17 November 2017

Tips of the Week: Workbench Saddle Bags, Safety Pin Slings, and the Value of a Portable Stick

Tips of the Week is our weekly peek at some of the best making tips, tricks, and recommendations we’ve discovered in our travels. Check in every Friday to see what we’ve discovered. And we want to hear from you. Please share your tips, shortcuts, best practices, and tall shop tales […]

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These Stones Come to Life with Clever Sculptural Effects

José Manuel Castro López accomplishes the seemingly impossible: sculpting stone to look like soft putty or liquid.

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Maker Spotlight: Aidan Leitch

Aidan Leitch has always enjoyed building things. He started with Legos, before making 3D video games, and finally settling on 3D printing.

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Thursday, 16 November 2017

What’s Going To Happen To TechShop’s Equipment?

We're not sure, but there's a form to fill out to express your interest.

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Mourning the Loss of TechShop

The founder of another makerspace, Dr. Evan Malone of NextFab, weighs in on what the closure of TechShop means.

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Looking Under the Hood of a Spy “Implant”

Taking apart a hidden USB spy device to see how it works and what it does.

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We Built a Bluetooth-enabled Porch Light and We’re Giving It Away

Enter to win this beautiful porch light with Leviton connectivity. There are couple runner-up prizes for the contest as well.

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5 More Podcasts to Listen to While You Work

While one may never be at a loss for great podcasts, it's difficult to find great podcasts about making. Here are 5 of our favorites.

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Wednesday, 15 November 2017

India’s Maker Movement Honors the Sweet Spot Where Tradition and Technology Intersect

for the third year in a row, the community converges at Maker Faire Bengaluru, taking place this year on November 17 and 18 at the Bengaluru Palace.

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Build a RGB Matrix Electric Guitar

Use a 32x32 Adafruit RGB matrix to decorate your electric guitar with LEDs that respond to the music that you're playing.

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TechShop Closes Doors, Files Bankruptcy

This makerspace business model comes to an end

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Turn PVC into a High Impact Soldering Iron Case

Follow along with Jeremy Cook as he transforms a PVC pipe into a functional, and stylish, case for his soldering iron.

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Kickstarting A Statue To Honor The One and Only Space Cat

Not many people know of Félicette, and you could change that.

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The Forest Awakens with These Animal Stormtrooper Helmets

William Kang designed his own unique way of celebrating the release of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.

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Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Building a Batman Electric Skateboard

Mad inventor, James Bruton, designs and prints a Batman Bat Tumbler skateboard.

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Arcade Games, Theme Park Rides, and Toothpick Sculptures at Rochester Mini Maker Faire

In Upstate New York, the Rochester Mini Maker Faire will be kicking off their fourth event this Saturday. Don't miss it!

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Edible Innovations: Minimizing Deforestation with Mapping Technologies

Leo Bottrill is the founder of Moabi, an organization that develops the technology to map and monitor resource-related infrastructure.

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Maker Pro News: Inside Adafruit, the Downfall of Doppler, and More

This week, get an inside look at the maker pros of Adafruit; and hardware founders are gloomy, but they shouldn't be!

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Quick Tip: Make Sewable LEDs With Creative Bending

By bending the leads of LEDs, you can make easily sewable lights that actually look kind of cool on their own.

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This Week in Making: Hackaday 2017 Grand Prize Winner and DIY Pinball Machine

This week, check out the Grand Prize winner of Hackaday 2017: an open source underwater drone that's both cheap and easy to make.

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Monday, 13 November 2017

Building a Secret Backstage Wall Piano for a Concert Venue

A German tech artist creates an interactive wall piano to surprise, entertain, and inspire backstagers.

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Sunset on the Library as Incubator Project

Photo by: Commander John Bortniak, NOAA Corps. Public Domain image.

If you haven’t heard via social media already, the Library as Incubator Project team has bittersweet news to share: it is time to sunset the LAIP.

We’ve had an amazing time working with many contributors to keep this community relevant and meaningful, but the time has come to make space for new and different projects.

Over the course of our time curating the LAIP, we’ve witnessed a sea change in the ways libraries and librarians think about the fundamental exchange libraries represent: that of connecting people and information. 

The idea that freely accessible hands-on learning opportunities and in-person connections are as valuable to communities as access to books and other materials has become standard in our professional conversations. The idea that a programming calendar represents a legitimate library collection and that programming librarians are essentially collection development librarians curating an ephemeral, responsive, and highly collaborative collection, now represents library business as usual. 

We are grateful to have had a hand in bringing these ideas to the fore by sharing stories and thinking deeply about what information is, what it means to be an artist and to create new information, and what it means to be a librarian whose job is to get that information into people’s hands.

Special thanks and shoutout to all of our various LAIP team members over the years: Christina Jones (co-founder!), Katie Behrens, and Angela Terrab! Y’all are the best!


What will happen with the site / Book to Art Club / @IArtLibraries

The University Archives at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have graciously offered to capture the site as it stands today. This will be archived in the UW’s ArchiveIt account. We also intend to keep the site accessible for the general public, although no new content will be added. WiLS is providing outstanding support for the LAIP by hosting the website. We are really pleased to be collaborating with them on this and appreciate their enthusiasm and support.

Ann Miller, Makerspace coordinator for Mead Public Library in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, will continue her role as Book to Art Club coordinator. You can visit that project at http://ift.tt/2zDog4k.

As for our social media platforms, the @IArtLibraries accounts will remain online for a while as an archive, but we won’t be adding new content after November. Recently we’ve been tagging posts with #IArtLibraries; we invite you to share those posts and continue the discussion via #IArtLibraries

What we’re up to

As of this writing, Erinn is an adult services librarian at Northland Public Library in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which is the library where she learned to read and where she had her first job as a shelver. She is also a writer, and is at work on a variety of projects including a poetry collection and a novel, and she crochets, paints, sews, and regularly teaches herself other creative stuff.

Erinn’s professional website is here: http://ift.tt/2hqoeCR; reach out to her via that contact page, or find her on Twitter at @erinnbatykefer

Laura is a Community Engagement Librarian for the Central Library at Madison Public Library in Madison, Wisconsin. She identifies and facilitates opportunities for creative engagement with library space, resources, and services. These include things like the Volunteer Toolbox, a cross-agency volunteer training series, and Library Takeover, an event-planning bootcamp for teams of community members who want to learn how to plan and host great large-scale events. On a personal note, she’s upping her running game and perfecting her read-aloud technique with her kiddo.

Please feel free to visit Laura’s professional website; there is a contact form on that page where you can send her a note. You can follow her on Twitter at @LauraDM08.

Holly is a youth services librarian at the Madison Public Library. She loves working with the youngest kiddos and their families, and baby storytime is her favorite. Holly is always working on ways to bring library services out of the building to reach more families. Follow Holly on Twitter at @hollystorckpost.

********

Thank you again for your support and partnership over the last seven years. It’s been a pleasure working with you!



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Maker Trend in Rome: Affordable, Accessible Assistive Technologies

The age-old adage, "When in Rome, do as the Romans do," takes a brilliant humanitarian twist in the maker realm.

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Sunday, 12 November 2017

#IArtLibraries | Featuring: Ellen Ziegler

This post originally appeared on the Library as Incubator Project in September 2016.

Ellen Ziegler’s extraordinary book art was what made us reach out, but her wonderful collaborative projects truly embody the library-as-incubator philosophy. Enjoy! ~Erinnscreen-shot-2016-09-10-at-9-48-58-pm

Library as Incubator Project (LAIP): Tell us a little bit about yourself and your work.

Ellen Ziegler (EZ): I went to Antioch College; some of my professors there were students at Black Mountain College with John Cage, Josef and Anni Albers, Jacob Lawrence, Merce Cunningham, Robert Motherwell, and many other seminal avant-garde artists of the 20th century. Their experimental methods influenced me deeply. I am self-taught as a graphic designer, artist, and book artist as a result of the anarchic and fearless approaches that I was exposed to. I’ve been lucky to have had a successful design practice in Seattle, followed by a shift to art and book arts in 2000.

My work investigates the psychological and physical properties of materials through drawing. I work with pigments, tar paper, mirror silvering, burned paper, obsolete industrial tools, and light-sensitive surfaces, as well as the changing effects of light and shadow.


"The beautiful couple is beautiful." John Green, The Fault In Our Stars Silver mylar on tracing paper, ink on tulle netting, 30” x 48”, 2014

“The beautiful couple is beautiful.” John Green, The Fault In Our Stars Silver mylar on tracing paper, ink on tulle netting, 30” x 48”, 2014

LAIP: What are you working on right now that you’re excited about?

EZ: I’m leading a group of artists in participating in an international exhibit here in Seattle in October 2016. 9e2 is a reprise of Nine Evenings, the first event where artists and scientists/engineers collaborated in public. This event was held in 1966 in New York over a period of nine evenings and included the think tank Bell Laboratories and, among many others, Robert Rauschenberg, Lucinda Childs, Deborah Hay, Steve Paxton, and Yvonne Rainer.

Fifty years later, artists are collaborating with 21st century concepts of technology and science to present experimental work. This will lead to “documentation” of an experimental form in an artist’s book.

I’m also working on a book about an eccentric museum in Mexico City that features both antique toys and street art. Stay tuned!

LAIP: How do you see your work interacting with narrative or story?  What does working in books allow you to do that you can’t pull off with other media?

EZ: I have always loved the sequencing that takes place in books. In the folio form, the left-to-right procession that is so much a part of our Western culture takes me on a storytelling journey that can be altered and played with infinitely. It’s this starting point that inspires me, even though many of my books are not in that form. An example:

My first artist’s book, 

“El Torero y la Bailarina”, was the love story of a young ballerina (my mother) from New York’s Ballet Theatre, in residence at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. She fell in love with Cantinflas, Mexico’s most famous actor and comedian (and a bullfighter). The story is told with photos, telegrams, and anecdotes. The book is written in Spanish and English. The Spanish language pages overlay the English pages and are hand-typed on onionskin — letter writing paper of the period. They were typed by a Mexico City mecanografico, a typist-for-hire who writes letters and documents for clients in one of Mexico City’s main squares. Funded by Kickstarter!

Another example: The Book of Knowledge is a series of forty original paintings, sequenced and bound into a single volume. The book format allows me to tell this story in images without miles of walls.

pg24-25_bookofknowledge

LAIP: How have libraries informed your creative work? Tell us about the first library you remember playing a part in your artistic development.

EZ: My father’s best friend had a private library of limited edition books, illustrated with tipped-in lithographs and etchings. This began my love for printing, typography, printmaking, and books in general. I also tried to read every book in the elementary school library in alphabetical order.
I also tried to read every book in the elementary school library in alphabetical order.
LAIP: Can you describe a particular library-incubated project for us?
 
EZ: I’ve always loved alphabets and languages. Access to books with the alphabets of the world at the University of Washington library fostered a piece called “Counting in Tongues”: numbers from Southeast Asia inscribed on adding machine tape.
 
LAIP: As an artist, what would your ideal library be like?  What kinds of stuff would you be able to check out, and what could you do there?
 
EZ: Not a direct answer, but: I want to make a library. I was deeply inspired by Orhan Pamuk’s Museum of Innocence (both an actual museum and a novel) that he built in Istanbul. (Readers: look it up! amazing.) Just think of making a library not only of books that have deep personal meaning, but objects, book-like objects, collections to be “read”, ephemera…this is one of my dreams.
 
 
downloadEllen Ziegler sources the immaterial through the material. Her practice includes drawing, sculpture, assemblage, and artist’s books. She works with mirrored glass, tar paper, cyanotype, and draw with an electrode on a copper table. These arcane materials, with their sometimes unpredictable outcome, allow for accident and serendipity as well as ongoing refinement of technique: chemistry is the emotion of matter. Connect with Ellen on her website. 


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Saturday, 11 November 2017

Weekend Watch: Tales from the Tinkerage

A UK science teacher telling tinkering tales out of school.

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Friday, 10 November 2017

Tips of the Week: Spring Board Clamping, Rubber Band Hands, and Why Extra Parts Equal Beer!

Clamping, sliding, gripping, pinning, splicing, oh my.

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Illuminate Your Mornings with this Sunrise Light

This light slowly illuminates in the morning and simulates the rising sun. It will trick your brain into thinking it's time to wake up.

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Raspberry PiBoy Mixes Walnut, Carbon Fiber, and Retro Gaming

This handheld mixes walnut and carbon fiber, maintaining the 80’s charm of the original Nintendo GameBoy but looking more dapper.

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2 Simple Linux Tricks to Code Like a Pro

Linux is a powerful open source operating system that has been around for many years. These helpful tips will make it easier to use.

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A Focus on Tech Literacy: Barnes and Noble Discusses Their 3rd Annual Mini Maker Faire Weekend

Barnes and Noble VP Kathleen Campisano, the driving force behind their Mini Maker Faires, discusses this year's events happening Saturday and Sunday, November 11th and 12th.

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Thursday, 9 November 2017

Restoring a Late-90s Packard Bell Multimedia PC

Look over the shoulder of an antique computer collector as he's restoring a homely PC from the last century.

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Collage and Frame Your Journey as a Maker

Chuan-Li Chang took her and her boyfriend's posters that they had collected from multiple events and framed them as a collage.

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MakerBot Releases Educator’s Guidebook for 3D Printing

In an effort to see more teachers use their 3D printers in a classroom setting, MakerBot released a guidebook that contains 9 lesson plans.

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Maker Faire Shenzhen Encourages Makers to Go Pro

Without a doubt, Maker Faire and Shenzhen are a natural fit

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Mel Kolstad in Residence at Appleton Public Library

It’s our pleasure to welcome back Mel Kolstad to the Library as Incubator Project. Today Mel fills us in on what she’s been up to during her artist residency at the Appleton Public Library in Appleton, Wisconsin. We love that Mel’s work continues to be deeply inspired by libraries and the “detritus” that comes into the library via returned library books. Enjoy! ~Laura

by Mel Kolstad

Back in 2012, I had the pleasure of creating a 7-part series called The Detritus Project for Library as Incubator Project.  In a conversation with Laura and Erinn, I thought it would be neat to find out what happened when I had the circulation department at the Fond du Lac Public Library save every bit of “detritus” that came back in from returned library books.  

WOWIE!

We were SHOCKED by how much came back to us.  It didn’t take long to fill a medium-sized box, and in tandem with those seven blog posts, I created this multi-media piece with the “detritus” that was found, which I donated to the library.

I had so much fun with this project that I knew I wanted to continue it in other iterations.  So in 2016, I curated a community-wide project where participants created art with even MORE saved detritus.  It was a huge hit, with over 25 artists participating.

But I STILL wanted more.  When the opportunity arose to apply for the artist-in-residence program at the Appleton Public Library, I jumped at it, and I used my Detritus Project idea for my application.  Very luckily, I was accepted, and for the months of September and October of 2017, I was the resident.  My approach was fourfold – I created a 40-piece exhibit made entirely of the “detritus” that the APL saved for me;

I gave a lecture about how the Library as Incubator project did indeed serve as an incubator for this ongoing project;

I taught a collage class using the detritus;

and I gave a demonstration about how I used the detritus in my own work.

People were fascinated by the things that come back in returned library books (it’s really the most amazing thing about the entire process!) and working with these materials really opened their eyes to myriad possibilities when it comes to making art with recycled materials.  It is my hope that some folks also visited their library with new eyes and a renewed sense of the fantastic resources available to them.

Many thanks must go to the entire staff of the Appleton Public Library, but especially Kristi Helmkamp, who served as my “mentor” for the entire residency.  I am so honored to be a part of the residency program and to utilize library detritus once again!

Mel Kolstad is an artist, speaker, instructor and arts advocate who makes her home in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. She is a printmaker, collagist, fiber artist, and papermaker. She is also delighted to be a Certified Papermaker for Arnold Grummer, Inc.; the membership chair of Wisconsin Visual Artists – Northeast Chapter; and curator for the Langdon Divers Gallery, located inside the Fond du Lac Public Library.

Mel has participated in many artist residencies throughout Wisconsin and also teaches various classes all over the state. You can view her artwork and find a listing of her upcoming classes on her website, melkolstad.com.



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How 3D Printing, Lego, and Custom Sleeves Are Helping Hospitals

A wide variety of people, who have been using maker techniques to help in the medical field, showed up to World Maker Faire New York.

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Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Convert Your Empty Filament Spools to Part Bins With This Clever Mod

a clever use for old spools turns them to workshop storage

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High Schooler 3D Prints Her Own Spirometer to Measure Asthmatic Breathing

Hannah Edge developed a compact spirometer that merges both old and new technologies, like 3D printing, to create a more portable device.

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This Automaton Blows Bubbles at the Push of a Button

Eric Hart built an automaton that moves its arms, dips a wand into soap, and brings it to her mouth to blow bubbles.

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Boston Accessibility Hackathon Is Looking for Makers

Join the Tikkun Olam Makers in a 48-hour hackathon to create solutions for some common problems with accessibility.

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#IArtLibraries | The Library Card Project at the American Craft Council

This post originally appeared on the Library as Incubator Project in April 2013.

When posts about the Library Card Project, facilitated by the American Craft Council, started to crop up on Twitter we naturally couldn’t wait to reach out to ACC organizers and find out more about this ephemera inspired handmade project. Today we ask project organizers Elizabeth Ryan and Jessica Shaykett to talk about the American Craft Council, the Library Card Project, and what it is about those little cards (and other types of library ephemera) that make them so appealing to crafters and makers. ~ Laura

Can you tell us a bit about the American Craft Council – the organizers, members, where the group “lives”, its mission, etc.

Located in the former Grain Belt brewery in Northeast Minneapolis, the American Craft Council (ACC) is a national nonprofit, educational organization founded in 1943 to promote the understanding and appreciation of contemporary American craft. We are a community of more than 25,000 members who believe in the value of things made by hand, the people who create them, and the meaning that creativity brings to everyday life.

Sandra Muzzy, "Dewey's Decimal Dilemma".

Sandra Muzzy, “Dewey’s Decimal Dilemma”.

Can you give us some background information about the Library Card Project – what was the inspiration for the project?

We have a one-of-a-kind research library that is open to the public, and although we’ve had an electronic catalog since the late ’90s, we recently uncovered several boxes of library cards hidden in the stacks. We thought it would be a shame to just throw them away, so we decided to see if we could convince our creative audience to repurpose them into new works of art.

Vanessa Walilko, drum farthingale and corset (detail).

Vanessa Walilko, drum farthingale and corset (detail).

How did you go about identifying/recruiting artists, and what guidelines were they provided?

We posted a call for submissions on our blog and promoted the project through our social networks. We simply asked anyone who was interested to send us their project proposal and how many cards they would need. The only caveats were that we wanted them to complete a short set of questions about their process and send us photos of their finished piece (or pieces) by a certain deadline. The response was tremendous. We went through all the submissions, divided up the cards, and sent them out to as many people as we could. Since then, we’ve been completely blown away by work that has been created, and we’re already planning to do another version of this (using a different library item) this fall.

 

 

 

 

Library ephemera is very popular with crafters and handmakers. In your opinion(s), what is it about these objects that makes them so compelling?

There’s a certain nostalgia for items such as library cards – especially if you grew up using a card catalog, and we think that was reflected in the enthusiasm of the participants. You can’t readily buy library ephemera like this at a store. It’s infused with a great sense of history, and that’s really appealing – especially to makers.

As craftspeople and “umbrella group” organizers yourselves, what do you see as being the role of libraries in the crafting world – currently, and potentially?

Most art libraries contain a plethora of resources – from how-to books to exhibition catalogs – on a range of mediums, and craftspeople are particularly interested in what artists in other media are working on, so we continually have people browsing our collection for inspiration. It’s also fun to see things like macrame and leather – which were very popular and well-documented back in the ’70s – having a resurgence, and you can’t find that sort of information on the Internet. So in this sense, libraries can serve as a bridge between the past and future of contemporary craft.

Keep up with all of the Library Card Project posts on the American Craft Council’s website. We also really enjoy following the ACC on Twitter at @craftcouncil.



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