Maker Monday #2–Shadow boxes, laser cutters, & 3D printers

We held our second Maker Monday at hack.rva last Monday, 11/18.  There was a small but diverse turn out.  The laser-build team (Alan, Paul, and Joe) was there, working on the “brains” of the laser cutter.  Kent was doing some maintenance on the Replicator 3D printer, changing out some parts.  Bill worked on scanning his laptop.  Robin was working on her People’s Library book and Sarah showed us (Robin, Tim, and Catherine) how to make custom, tiny shadow boxes out of vintage postcards.

making shadow boxes from vintage postcards

making shadow boxes from vintage postcards

The results were really satisfying and kind of compelling.  When you have actual correspondence on the inside (or outside) of your box, the whole thing takes on a whole other level of meaning.  Even the parts you trim away to make the box are somehow evocative and aesthetically appealing in their own right.

interior writing, postage stamp, and post mark, with corners that were trimmed away

interior writing, postage stamp, and post mark, with corners that were trimmed away

Robin used her corners to bind the edges of her shadow box.

corners re-used to construct the box

corners re-used to construct the box

The lithograph printing of the postcards is so vibrant and otherworldly, with its velvety texture.  This is a great use of these small pieces of ephemera.

vibrant lithography

vibrant lithography

We were brainstorming what to do with the boxes after we made a batch.  They’d be perfect homes for photographs or tiny natural history specimens.  Or anything tiny, really.  We’re planning to work some more with these before the end of the year to see what we can come up with.  I’d like to add some 3D printed elements and maybe even tiny LEDs.  We’re thinking they would make great diorama ornaments for a Christmas tree, since they’re so light and they almost scream for some glitter, tinsel, and snowy fluff.  Updates on that next month!

shadow boxes from vintage postcards--assorted sizes

shadow boxes from vintage postcards–assorted sizes

Next Maker Monday is December 16th, 7pm @ hack.rva.

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