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Observing what others have done

A project log for fluidity from rigidity

a sinuous kinetic sculpture

sEasEa 04/28/2014 at 10:290 Comments

I've been watching videos of different kinds of kinetic sculptures. I continue to be amazed at how a collection of hard pieces can make soft, flowing motion. The movement requires interdependence of the pieces, and their solidity allows force to transfer between them efficiently.

Where will the force originate? Is it electrical? Or powered by wind? Does the piece need to be touched to move?

Seeing interviews with the artists is both encouraging (these things were all designed and created by real people) and discouraging (they have education, experience, skills, and resources I lack). Many of them use computers to design their works, which intimidates me. 3-D modeling software has a steep learning curve, and the few times I've tried using such programs have been incredibly frustrating for me. 

I'm fascinated by frustration. It has such a strong effect on people. When it stems from not knowing how to do something, it can be hard to distinguish whether the skill is within my zone of proximal development (and would be worth pursuing) or is beyond what I'll be able to accomplish.

In this case, the idea of using design software is so daunting that when I come across it in these videos, it makes me want to give up on the idea of doing this at all. I have to keep talking myself back into it.

Overcoming my brain's drive to avoid frustration may be the most challenging part of this project.

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