Collaboration

An Idea Flowers

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I’ve finally got a start on the felt part of my collaborative project with my son. He, of course, has his end of things well in hand.

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My first idea for the water lily was several nested layers of petals like this:

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But, for some reason I felt like I wanted something a little more abstract. Inspired by this project, I   decided to try attaching several bowls together to create more of an essence of a water lily (including a green lily pad).

Stacked and ready to roll…

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… and came to the conclusion, that this wasn’t going to work. Too many layers, and the thickness of the resists kept the pieces from attaching together. Plan B ! I’m making each bowl separately and will attach them afterwards.

I really need to get back to this, but now it’s December and that means holiday craziness. I can hope …

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An Idea Takes Root

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Ok, collaborative project update. Still very much in the planing stage, but I wanted to share the process. I’m into making sculptural felt pieces, and my son is passionate about making electronics. I have in my head the idea of an interactive piece of felt. I love how tactile wool is and how much people like to touch it. With this in mind, I want to make something that responds when you pick it up. For some reason I though of a water lily set in a wooden base that you would hold. The center would be hollow glass with LEDs. The light would change based on different inputs.

I set my son on a hunt to find a micro-controller that would fit our size requirements and could be programmed with my son’s knowledge. This is what he came up with : the Lilypad Arduino.

Hey, the name even matches ! When I talked to my friend Natali about doing the glass piece for me, she mentioned she was quite into water lilies for a recent project; a very cool collaborative collection of art for producing a Tarot deck.

So everything is coming up water lilies. I think we’re on the right path!

A Third Space

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I’ve been enjoying this blog for the past few weeks: Ben Hewitt. Ben is a writer and he and his family are homesteaders and homeschoolers. I’m having chicken envy !

In one of Ben’s recent posts he talks about how his kids passions are totally self motivated and how he and his wife believe in “presence not praise. He’s an eloquent writer; it’s well worth the read.

I’d like to throw in another possibility in addition to presence : collaboration. When we  are making connections with our children ( or anyone ) by finding and sharing areas of common interest then our presence can become even more meaningful. There is no need for one person to direct or be the authority. Everyone’s presence is truly valued. Sometimes it can be easy to fall into the habit where we’re all inhabiting our own little circles. Find something where you and your child’s passions can overlap – then you’ve created a third space !