This is what learning is about.
After one week at the TechShop I am still totally excited, I feel like I am on the all-star team with a bunch of artists and students that I respect and whose company I enjoy. This however also qualifies as the ultimate unclass. (http://unclasses.org/classes/452) and I have an agenda. This time I am a peer in learning and less of a teacher. I have however taken up the mantle of a community organizer and try to keep up with everyone and do some cheerleading as we only have a month to work here.
Our first meeting was at noon on Tuesday. Much though I hate it I was late to the meeting because Steve was on auto-pilot and headed towards Jameco. We eventually got turned back around and had a nice meet and greet and tour of the TechShop. It was great to feel like the new kid in the playground again, and after a look around we scheduled classes and left.
On Wed Dan, Steve, Dave and I took the laser class with the lovely and talented Laura Mappin.
On Thursday we had our first potluck, I made beans and rice and Laura was able to join us as well.
The food was good, the company was excellent and then our very own Steve Durie led us in a workshop where we build blinky bots. We got some SBU’s (Safety and Basic Use classes) in (4 of us on laser, vinyl, and plasma cutter) and then Saturday got our first block of laser time and we shared it. Four of us ended up using the 2 blocks of time:
Santa Steve made festive Christmas gifts
Dan etched some wood with a family photo.
After our laser time we were fortunate enough to happen upon the textile and laser meetups at the TechShop. I had a chance to play with some canvas on a board which was super painful to cut through, and etching an image took 4 passes with the laser on 40% power. If the power went higher the gesso seemed to give off a gas that flamed up.
We met again this Tuesday after Jenene and I tried to go to Sacremento (that darn 101 hates us). We then had our next block of laser time after our meetup at noon. At the meeting we tossed around the idea of creating lamps for the exhibit at the beginning of spring. We have yet to hear from everyone, but it seems like a good project. We also booked three sessions back to back for the laser from 1-7 pm. Because of this I managed to get my first project cut and do some experimentation with the canvas. I applied layers of yellow, red, and blue in both watercolor and acrylic. I then lased off portions of it in “etch” mode. Test results are here next to my newly coated yellow canvas. I am thinking this will take a while to iron out the materials, but am excited by the results so far.
Our brave band will not meet this Thursday as it is x-mas eve, we are planning our next potluck on Saturday (when we have another laser block). I have also ordered some super bright LED’s for my lamp.
Now we just need the arduino class.
I made a quick video last night showing some of the paper work I did on the laser.