Posts Tagged "Grant Diffendaffer"


I’ve been too busy doing and making to write much this last year but I’ve got to tell you to come on down to the original Maker Faire this weekend at the San Mateo Fairgrounds where you can hear all about it in person. I’m back with Steadcraft and eager to show you all of my latest creations. I’m busy in the studio right now putting last minute finishing touches on a collection of creations. Come see how my craft has taken a digital turn–with familiar handcraft like metal work and embroidery having found their way out of history–through circuitry melded with creativity.

I’ll be showing my latest machine creation–a P3Steel. Whut’s that you say? It is an open source 3D printer–a derivative of the most famous such design, a Prusa I3. Come find out why I thought it was worth my time to go down this particular kit rabbit-hole (Mostly it is a Spanish thing).

The main reason I haven’t been posting here (besides being busy building aforementioned metal beast), is that I have been heavily occupied by my new job (since September 2016) working as a Mechanician in the Digital Fabrication Lab (DFL) at the College of Environmental Design at UC Berkeley. There, we assist students in Architecture, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning with the creation of models–an essential part of their process. What is digital about that? While students have been drawing with computers for quite some time, the fabrication side of things has taken a little longer to catch up. Now though, instead of primarily focusing on manually cutting and gluing everything, students also use computerized machinery. The lab has half a dozen laser cutters, 8 3D printers, a CNC router (with tool changer), a CNC mill and a Zund.

The latest addition in the DFL is a desktop 3D scanner. I have recently picked up a Sony A7 ii (full frame digital camera)–with the purpose of upping my photogrammetry game. Come on down to the DFL (sign up first) May 30th, 31st, and June 1st and I’ll teach you everything I know about reality capture and 3D printing.

What else has happened in the last year…let’s see… In my life, I have also done a short creative stint with the Mythbusters production team as they reboot the series after the great Adam and Jamie moved on to other things.

I got to go to Mexico this winter where the best three hours I spent were in the National Museum of Anthropology. Besides being an overwhelming presentation of incredible ancient monumental (and personal ornamental) artworks, representative of fantastically developed long lost civilizations, it is probably the best place I have ever been for photogramettry. I could have stayed there for days on end.

I don’t have enough fancy tools in my life so I bought into a huge and powerful laser cutter.

I witnessed the kinetic creations of the otherworldly famous Kinetic Sculpture Grand Challenge.

I delved into 3D stop motion filmaking (my secret dream job).

I spent months trying to build a complete photogrammetry model of the Storied Haven. Part of the work that I do with 5 Ton Crane, this site installation is headed to the Hermitage Museum in Virginia. One of our previous projects, the Raygun Gothic Rocketship, was just installed outside the Wings over the Rockies Museum in Denver. We also made permanent installations of our Oakland Squared project in the Latham Square Building in downtown Oakland and the Moffett Library at U.C. Berkeley.

I managed not to get washed off the hillside in this winter’s epic rains.

And now I am digging into an upcoming exhibition at the Legion of Honor Museum.

Oh, also, I’m teaching a workshop on Photogrammetry, 3D Scanning and 3D printing. May 30th, 31st, and June 1st. Spaces still available!

Steadcraft.com is down for the moment for repair, so stay tuned here for everything me, and come find me by the big door in the Expo Hall (Zone 2 by CCA) and I’ll tell you all about it in person!

 

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I had an excellent reception at Maker Faire with Steadcraft last year and I’m super excited to announce that I’ll be returning once again this year! Mark your calendar and come on down to the Maker Faire May 20th-22nd.

You’ll be glad to know that I’m still plan crowdfunding to enable me to enter low level production with the new jewelry line and distribute it more widely. Stay tuned for more information on how you can be one of the first to wear my vintage inspired digitally designed jewelry and accessories.

For the time being, enjoy this gallery of photos of my new earrings.

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It’s been 20 years since Nan Roche published “The New Clay,” and polymer clay has come a long way baby. I picked up polymer about the same time as Roche published her book, generally recognized as the first serious assessment of the material in print. There have been a few museum shows in the years since which focused on polymer art. It is largely through the work of Elise Winters that museums have begun to more recently show an interest in collecting the work as documentation of new development in an important medium. Winters, having a substantial collection herself, combined it with those of Nan Roche, Lindly Haunani, and Carol Watkins, and through great diligence has distributed the combined collection to several museums. The Racine Art Museum debuted the first placement in October 2011 with Terra Nova: Polymer Art at the Crossroads.

Necklace by Nancy Banks. Image from polymerartarchive.com

Among Roche’s collection were a number of my beads that went to the Mingei International Museum.  They can be seen as part of the New Jewelry in a New Medium show until June 17, 2012.

The show represents the work of 64 artists whose work influenced and was influenced by the birth of this new medium.  I’m proud to be included.  Here is the full list:

“Dan Adams and Cynthia Toops, Jamey Allen, Kathleen Amt, Deborah M. Anderson, Nancy Banks, Meisha Barbee, Louise Belcher, Shellie Brooks, Donna Carty, Jean Comport, Dan Cormier, Katherine Dewey, Grant Diffendaffer, Marcea Donovan, Dayle Doroshow, Kathleen Dustin, Celie Fago, Janet Farris, Lori Feiss, Steven Ford and David Forlano, Galdieri, Gwen Gibson, Kathy Gregson, Dorothy Greynold, Ruth Ann Grove, Michael Grove, Lindly Haunani, Amelia Helm, Jean Hornberger, Tory Hughes, Joanne Hunot, Marie Johannes, Donna Kato, Kaz Kono, Klew (Karen Lewis), Z. Kripke, Jacqueline Lee Cherie, Sandra Lentz, Christine Leu, Laura (Oakes) Liska, Margaret Maggio, Barbara McGuire, Cheryl Michell, Linda Pederson, Carolyn Potter, Marion Quinn, Lorraine Randecker, Margaret Regan, Nan Roche, the Rouse House (Mary Rouse), Marie Segal, Rudi Sennett, Ileen Shefferman, Sarah Shriver, The Sisters of San Francisco, Liz Tamayo, Jan Twink, Pier Voulkos, Liv and Joy Waters, Andree Weinman, Elise Winters.”

 

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Wow–how long was that broken?   It could be some time folks.  Apologies if you have tried and failed.  You can always contact me at mail at diffendaffer.com if you have any trouble.   For now though, I seem to have the kinks worked out of my Contact page.

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Any time I’ve been away for a while from the practice of making beads, I find I need an easy re-entry to get things moving again in the studio.  These beads are perfect.  I roll out a batch of core beads to start with.  It’s a straightforward task with zero creative demands.  It’s quick and (with practice) easy.  At the end, I have a pile of blank beads, canvases awaiting my attention.

Part of the beauty of the process is the way that the textures are created and imparted to the beads.  First, I make plates, which I treat both raw and cured. When raw, I imprint the clay with simple implements in a repetitive fashion.  After curing, I carve the plate.  With a library of these tools, I need only properly layer colored clay over my core beads, and I am able to pull a whole galaxy of differing beads off a single plate.

Some detail treatment, sanding, and polishing, and I have a little box full of joy to remind me why I love this process so much, and propel me into the next challenge.

I’ve posted five pairs on Etsy, and there are more to come.

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

Available from GrantDiffendaffer on Etsy

It’s a great way to get the wheels turning again.  Starting with a process that resembles nothing so much as doodling, I end up with refined and elegant beads.  If this interests you, check out my book, Polymer Clay Beads.  Or take a workshop.

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