Friday, January 20, 2012

IP Weekly Progress -- #14

What I did:

Monday: (4 hours) Obtained different samples of papers, Folded and played with papers, Made patterns from scrap paper
Tuesday: (4 hours) Made more patterns for a mini model, started folding tissue paper and shaping folds of the model
Wednesday: (3 hours)
Thursday: (4 hours) Obtained more wire of various gauges, Playing with wire armature


Pretty successful this week -- I'm hoping by Tuesday to finish this model and incorporate another model with wire armature to "animate" my creature. I'm very happy with my experimentation of tissue paper and I think I might be on track for what to see my paper Deep Sea creatures will look like. Though the material will change when it gets bigger in scale .... which is why wire armature might be the next big step ...

What I accomplished/discovered/encountered:

Last semester I worked heavily by playing with folding techniques and this semester I'm applying what I have learned. This time I'm cutting out "star-like" shapes and sketching lines on the scrap patterns and creasing these folds on the tissue paper.

Once I make several shapes and apply different folds ... I can layer the shapes and make my own 3D patterns! I'm beginning to create the large and microscopic creatures on Ernst Heckel's plates. With more practice, the level of detail in my folds will intensify.

On a smaller scale the acid-free tissue paper can retain it's shape without much issue. Though once I begin to go bigger, I can see that the tissue paper will "flop" and lose it's character. I will have to incorpate a wire skeleton inside in order to keep the structure of the creature. The one major benefit of having a wire skeleton is that I can bend certain "tendrils" to give the creature movement and even personality. I can make it that my paper creatures will be able to interact and communicate with each other -- not just through touch or tendril movement, but also through light.

Exerpts taken from Wikipedia:

There are five main theories for bioluminescent traits:

Counterillumination camouflage

In some species bacterial bioluminescence is used for counterillumination so the animal matches the overhead environmental light


The cookiecutter shark uses bioluminescence for camouflage, but a small patch on its underbelly remains dark and appears as a small fish to large predatory fish like tuna and mackere lswimming beneath it. When these fish try to consume the "small fish", they are bitten by the shark, which gouges out small circular "cookie cutter"-shape chunks of flesh from its hosts.
Bioluminescence is used as a lure to attract prey by several deep sea fish such as the anglerfish. A dangling appendage that extends from the head of the fish attracts small animals to within striking distance of the fish. Some fish, however, use a non-bioluminescent lure.

Dinoflagellates have an interesting twist on this mechanism. When a predator of plankton is sensed through motion in the water, the dinoflagellate luminesces. This, in turn, attracts even larger predators that will consume the would-be predator of the dinoflagellate.

The attraction of mates is another proposed mechanism of bioluminescent action. This is seen actively infireflies, which use periodic flashing in their abdomens to attract mates in the mating season. In the marine environment, this has been well documented only in certain small crustaceans called ostracod. It has been suggested that pheromones may be used for long-distance communication, and bioluminescence used at close range to "home in" on the target.


Certain squid and small crustaceans use bioluminescent chemical mixtures or bioluminescent bacterial slurries in the same way as many squid use ink. A cloud of luminescence is expelled, confusing or repelling a potential predator while the squid or crustacean escapes to safety. Every species of firefly has larvae that glow to repel predators.


Communication between bacteria (quorum sensing) plays a role in the regulation of luminesence in many bacterial species. Using small extracellularly secreted molecules, they are able to adapt their behavior to turn on genes for light production only when they are at high cell densities.


While most marine bioluminescence is green to blue, the Black Dragonfish produces a red glow. This adaptation allows the fish to see red-pigmented prey, which are normally invisible in the deep ocean environment where red light has been filtered out by the water column

There are many forms of biolumenscence, but I will probably just stick to one form of it and that is communication. When you think about a world where nothing can see it's neighbor, every type of biolum. falls under the category of communication though some forms of communication intends great harm on their neighbor in order to survive. The environment I am creating will not intend a hostile environment, but a place where all creatures acknowledge and interact with one another.

What I think I should do next:

Finish model for Tuesday
Wire armature play -- Do I need a lot of wire or how little can I possibly minimize wire use for lighting purposes? What gauge can I work with?
Thinking about going BIGGG. Start plans for a bigger version of model just to see how large I can go.
Need to obtain larger sheets of tissue paper or get a roll. Though I can work with sheets, I'm limiting my folding capabilities and aesthetics (Seams of paper layered will show with the light shining. Want to minimize this as much as possible).

1 comment:

Juliet said...

maybe you could make the seams work for you though ... ? if they came down the center of a "petal" or tendril it might look natural enough. like i said, check out a floral supply place for large tissue. your small models are looking great! perhaps layering the tissue in the next and larger version to give it more structure will help it still hold shapes and folds.