First Friday didn’t happen for me because my materials are not all in yet, therefore I do not have a sculpture base for people to add on to.  I did, however, do some research on glues and dye some recycled paper from the Computer Science building (because Langford doesn’t recycle paper for some reason? We should probably get on that.  We use a lot of paper…)

The glues I tested are E600 and three versions of Aleen’s Tacky Glue.  I was worried about the glue not drying clear with the Fast Grab and Quick Dry tacky glues, but those dried faster and made it easier to see the application area. The Clear Gel worked well too, as did the E6000, but the E6000 dried slower and has harmful vapors that aren’t necessarily community-friendly and both were too clear to see the application area clearly and became messier as a result. The white application glues dried clear, and are perfect for the job.


Ashley helped me dye white paper from the CSCE recycle bins to make it colorful.  I have a ton of food dye from a camp project where the buyers didn’t realize that you only need one drop of food coloring to color icing.  I collected the around-eight unopened boxes of food coloring at the end of the camp season, and I am probably set for life.  We put a few drops of coloring into trays that had a little bit of water in them and then had fun mixing and matching and swirling the colors together. The result is quite beautiful:



We let them dry in the air, and then I cut them into triangles that people can write on and roll beads with. The width of the triangles determined the shape of the bead, as shown in this .PDF from BeadforLife’s website.  It took a while to cut them, and I was using the fancy sliding paper trimmer pictured below.  It must take forever to cut the longer triangles for thicker beads with scissors as the women in Uganda do, and my great respect for these women has grown even more.



I have decided to definitely go with a tree theme for the lamp. I was inspired by the wishing tree in Lam Tsuen when I studied abroad in Hong Kong, and I think it would be interesting to turn a wishing tree into a well-wishing tree.  Instead of hoping you get something, you give something instead; Whether it’s a compliment, a story, a happy thought, or anything else, you will be spreading your positivity around to make the world a brighter place.  It would be neat if these were written on recycled paper and incorporated into the tree base and leaves, and the beads would be like flowers or fruit on the tree that weight it to light up.

Updated below, ignore this paragraph. I’m not sure yet how the weight will be measured (pressure on the base or pull on the branches) but I’m leaning towards pressure because it would be easier to measure.  I am currently researching load cells to weigh the sculpture and adjust the brightness.

I am receiving a 0-5kg load cell by 8pm on Friday Sept 25th.  This may not be enough weight or sensitivity for the final, but it will allow me to put a preliminary piece together for October’s First Friday in Bryan so I can start getting community involvement as well as experimenting with the code to finesse it more later.

I want to create several different trees at different events and places and “graft” them together to create an even brighter piece.  This modularity will allow for more portability and more chances to get the time-lapse works.

I’m debating about creating the light using one light source or using multiple bulbs.  I have some Christmas lights that I could use (if I can convert them to batter power?), or I could go with a more chandelier-light setup, or I could have one bulb get brighter and blindingly brighter by itself.  I do want to make it cast colorful shadows, possibly patterned ones.  I may talk to Glen about using gel scraps from Studio A, or I might look into colored glass, tissue paper, etc.

Bead for Life is sending me 5 lbs of beads, and I need to see how many beads that is in volume before I continue finalizing my concept with the incorporation of the beads and deciding on the scale of the project.  I want to use mostly recycled paper and materials for the tree itself.

Contemporary Art Studio 1

This is the blog for my Contemporary Art Studio 1 class at Texas A&M University.