Monday, July 11, 2011

Walking House

Houses on stilts are now a thing in the past. Using that idea, I created a house on stilts, and it can walk. The house has dining area, living room area with tv, coffee table and sofa, kitchen area and not forgetting a big sofa bed.

Robot ONe and Robotoo

Robot toys are lovable. How can I not make any cardboard robot toys, right? Always love those antique tin robots. So time to make my own robot toys. Making use of my knowledge on making puppets, I incorporated the moving mechanisms, so the robots are movable at most parts, from the head, arms, legs, and waist.

 Robot ONe

Robot ONe and Robotoo shaking hands.
Robot ONe and Robotoo.
Robot ONe and Robotoo having a chat.

The Flyer

I have cars, I have bikes, so how can I not have planes?
Made a real ugly plane prototype before I came up with this. Instead of making it look very realistic like a real aeroplane, I choose to give it a more cartoon-y feel.

A combination of helicopter and aeroplane. Besides having the movable rotor on top, it also has a pair of turbo engine on its wings. The engines are movable, so the flyer can fly both horizontally and vertically. This shall be my first flying toy series.

Crazy Houses On Wheels

On the roll here, continued on and made this, Crazy Houses on Wheels. Since I can have mini houses, how about different kind of houses, as if it's a city? So I went on and made houses of different shapes and sizes, and some like on stilt. I added more and more, so much so this piece is the heaviest and biggest so far.

Mini Houses on the MOve

An idea that continued on after completing Moving Cottage. Also inspired from an exhibition I saw by Michael Lee. So I thought, why not have many mini houses together, and they can all travel together? So out came this.

To create a link from one house to another, I've added strips that kinda serve as ladder.

Flying Office

How about a office that can fly around? An office that's on wings?
Actually this one is modelled after a wooden toy that I've bought from Prague. The actually toy is a lot more complicated as it's also a puppet. So several parts are movable. If I were to make it as complicated as the wooden toy, it would have to be much bigger in size so as to have the structural strength for all the movable gadgets. Therefore, I opt for a simpler, smaller version of it.

The wings are movable, so can the steering wheel. As this is an office, but the space is quite small, so to solve the problem, the chair is turn-able, 360 degree. So, when driving the office around, the chair can be turned to face the steering wheel, and when working, the chair can be turned to face the table and computer. And yes, there's a toilet at the back. So no worries about no toilet break. Also, the toilet allows a fantastic view!

House On Wheels

As I was making the Moving Cottage, an idea, and image floated in my mind. I saw a huge wheel turning, so I thought to myself, "hey, how about a big wheel which is actually a house?". So, while I was still making the Moving Cottage, I started on House On Wheel as well.

The tricky part on making this piece of work was the structural construction of the wheels. The wheels must be able to move separately from the main body, which is the house. I also added a small 'viewing platform' on one side of the exterior of the wheels. I thought, it will be cool if there's a viewing platform where one could sit and relax, and enjoy the views.

Back of the House On Wheels.

Details of the interior.

There's a dining area, living room with sofa and coffee table, bookshelf, and kitchen area on the 2nd storey. The lower storey is a simple bedroom and study table. Also included at the top storey, a small control room, well, there must be some kinda control are for 'driving' the house around. Just like with the Moving cottage, making tiny furniture using the corrugated cardboard was quite a challenge as the smaller the piece, the harder it is to cut the cardboard without damaging it. So I guess if I want to make anything smaller, I would need to use other kind of cardboards...

Moving Cottage...

Time to move on to something different...
Inspired by Howke's Moving Castle, I created this piece, Moving Cottage. Perhaps not as marvellous as the one in the movie, I think it's a good start, for more to come.
 One mistake that I've made was failing to take photographs of the interior before I cover up. So I don't have any photographs to show the living room, dining room, and bedroom. Also created a control room. Well, the cottage can move, so will need some control room of some sort (I imagined).
 Front and back of the Moving Cottage.
To get up to the upper storey, I have made ladders, which are on the outside. So to get from one storey to another, just follow the ladders...

It was really fun creating this, though it was rather challenging trying to make those tiny chairs, tables, etc. I had so much fun that I ended up making a few more such toys...

Sports CarS

I thought to myself, I had made small antique cars using the cardboard, so how about sports car of a much bigger size? So I started making them. As I was making them, I wondered to myself how else can they be different besides just be a toy car? Then an idea came to me. How about letting the front and back trunk be open-able? They can be secret compartments to store things. Now, it can be a toy car and a secret storage! Oh, the steering wheel is also movable.

The first sport car that I've made, is a little more to the straight, squarish look. So, for the second car, I decided to try another design.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Cardboard Bikes...

 I love bikes, though I may not have a license to ride them. Neither can I possibly collect them. Made this first motorbike, inspired by the movie Priest. Somehow I was attracted by the futuristic, yet bulky looking bikes that were ride by the characters in the movie.

Spring off the idea of a tricycle, how about a tri-bike? The handle-bar is turnable... this make possible after making a rather ugly prototype where I figured out how to make the front wheel turn-able, and yet the angle of the back wheels is just right for support and stability.

Here's Genni (one of the dolls I made) with the Tri-bike. She's definitely very happy with it. It fits her just nice. Now she too has a new toy.

Trojan horse Inspired - Donkey and Giraffe

 My first series of Trojan horse inspired Donkey. With the wheels, it's movable. Thought of making a 'rocking' donkey, like a rocking chair, but I think allowing it to be movable is much more fun.

After making the donkey, I made the giraffe as its long neck and small body should make it looks rather attractive.

Before making these, I have previously made a prototype as I need to figure out the balancing of the weight of the head, so that the work will not topple, and can move freely. Once the weight/ balancing issue is figured out. The fun begins...

My thoughts On Corrugated Cardboard Artworks

I have always love toys. If only I have the space and money, I think I would have collected a whole lot of them. Now, I found a way to fulfil that part of my interest, that is, make my own toys!

I have been using the corrugated cardboards I collected to make movable stationary holders, and also explored into making cars. This time I shall explore further, without any concern about the work being functional (like the stationary holders) or if it makes much sense. Perhaps it's time to simply explore and let my imagination runs wild. I cannot afford to buy those nice looking, fun toys I like, but perhaps I can surely make them myself.

I do not consider myself as creative, but I am surely, certainly inspired (and influenced) by some artists, movies, fantasties, etc. So I would not consider my idea or design original. In fact, I doubt there's anything in the world that's really original original anymore, or to begin with. Everyone is borrowing ideas here and there, everyone is inspired by this or that, everyone is influenced by someone or something in some ways or another.

So, based on the inspiration and/or ideas that sprung out from some artists, or movies that I've seen, or photos/ pictures that I saw, I threw myself into making my first few corrugated cardboard toys.

I decided to make my own version of whatever toys that I want to create, and certainly would not seek to make a replicate of what's already out there. Basically I seek to create my toys based on whatever inspiration that I might have, or simply my version of that particular idea/ model.

I started off with making those that I'm already familiar with, that is something movable... so out came the Trojan horse inspired- donkey and giraffe, and the bigger cars, and bikes... With one idea springing off another, I find myself making one work after after, sometimes even making two or three at the same time.

Inspired greatly by Howke's Moving Castle, I made a few works starting from Moving Cottage to Walking House. From the first piece, Moving Cottage, I added on more ideas and continue creating one after another. The main challenge of this series would be making the tiny furniture as cutting corrugated cardboard into small pieces without damaging it is difficult. Simply tricky. Perhaps I should consider using other types of cardboards for the furniture.

Robot toys also fascinate me. So, how can I not make my own robot toys? Making use of my knowledge on puppet-making, I made the robots movable. So they can turn their heads, move their arms and legs, and also turn their bodies. This of course, would not be possible, have I not made a rather out of proportion prototype to test out all the moving mechanisms. For this series, I have to make sure I don't glue the parts wrongly, and everything is built in order. Else the moving mechanism will not work smoothly. It was challenging but when the robots are all finally put together, the satisfaction is beyond words.

This series of works, I have decided, not to paint them. I've always love the raw-ness of the cardboard, and hopes that everyone else would appreciate its original beauty. Since I'm encouraging recycling, I think if I were to paint, I am in a way using more new materials. Not forgetting that the process of painting itself is tedious (not easy to paint cardboard), and hence time consuming. With that said, I should clarify that for my movable stationary holders and cars series, I have painted as it appeals better to customers. Most people still doesn't like the raw-ness and original colour of the cardboard. So, I still need to strike some balance. However, with this toy series, I am not "mass-producing" (so each toy is exclusive), nor am I catering to mass market, so I reserve the option not to paint.

These works perhaps can be categorized into different series, such as the 'On wheels' series, the 'flying' series, the 'cars' series, the 'bikes' series, the 'robots' series, etc...

So, how well will this series of works do? I can only wait and see, though the response from friends have been encouraging.

This marks the start of my new series of works...

The next step, besides making more of such toys, and expanding the series, I would need to provide storage/ display solution. That can be as tricky as each of the toys are of different sizes.