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July 29, 2006

making cobblestones at bent

by sven at 11:59 pm

Wednesday (7/26) I finished my first job at Bent: casting plaster tiles that will represent cobblestones in a small town.

[Being conscientious about confidentiality, I only took these 4 photos -- ones that show my little project, and nothing else.]

the empty mold

Here's an empty mold that I made. The cobblestone pattern is vacuformed. Clay walls helped give the tiles a more "jig-saw"-like edge. The mold sits in a wooden box, but the box is protected by a sheet of plastic.

the mold filled with plaster

I'd fill the mold up with plaster (hydrostone), layering in a piece of burlap. Then I'd "scree" the excess off the top.

running four molds at once

When I finally got the workflow down, I had four molds running at once, popping out four tiles per hour. To control the spread of particulates, mixing plaster and de-molding tiles needed to be done in the spray booth.

stacking up finished tiles

In order to help me keep track -- and make it easy for supervisors to see how far along I was -- I numbered the backs of the tiles. After de-molding, I stacked the tiles in piles. By the end of the job, I'd made 55 cobblestone tiles.

Working at Bent was wonderful! I was thrilled to discover that I was familiar with almost every material I came in contact with -- due to the intensive research of the past eight months. And yet, seeing these materials actually in use -- it gave me a much more visceral understanding of how they all come together to make an animation. It was a good low-stakes project for me to start out with, getting me oriented in the world of professional stopmo.

Bent hires folks on a per-job basis... And it sounds like they've got a lot of projects coming up. I'm really hoping to work with them again soon.

posted by sven | July 29, 2006 11:59 PM | categories: stopmo