Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Rochester Mini Maker Faire 2016 Preview: Budd Jett

I will be presenting a new project for my third year at the Rochester Mini Make Faire on Saturday, November 19th, from 10 am to 5 pm at the Rochester Convention Center. Year one and year two were awesome, and I'm very excited about this year as well.

This year I am doing a project I am calling the Articulated Paper Creature Mash-Up.  That's a mouth full, but what is means is that you can come to my booth, stamp an image of various body parts of a character on cardstock, cut them out, and assemble the character with brass fasteners to create a poseable/jointed/articulated paper doll.

Oh, you mean like a paper doll that my grandma used to play with?  Well, sort of, but not exactly. The characters and creatures are not just little cute little girls with pony-tails.  The characters are from other local artist's imaginations.  You can build a single character, or mix-and-match pieces together to create a brand new creation.

I will highlight each character over the next few days.

The first character is Dan Bentley's robot, Budd Jett.

Dan Bentley creates sculptures of robots from found materials, like old radios and metal salt+pepper shakers that he calls Retrobots.  Dan has shown his 'bots at the first Rochester Mini Maker Faire, the Strong Museum, and Clothesline Art Show.  I have known Dan for many years, and I drool over his creations every time I see them.  He trolls local flea markets to find components for his futuristic creations.  One of his sculptures named Budd Jett was the inspiration for this paper creature (prototype pictured).  Budd was built from a bank, tumblers, and bowls to name a few of his components.  But he is way more than the sum of his parts.

I love Budd Jett mostly because of the bank.  The red, white, and blue stands out so well against the shining silver chrome.  This guy is such a throw-back to old patriotic superheroes. His jet pack on the back made from nautical navigation lights is the perfect accessory for this mechanical marvel.  I also in love with the flash bulb eyes, which remind me of my Dad's camera growing up.

To learn more about Dan's process and selection of his pieces, you should check out his short interview by WXXI's Arts in Focus program.

It is a great honor to help bring Budd Jett to life in paper.  Though Dan's metal version of Budd is immobile, I have imaged joints that allow his arms to swing, and his legs to bend at the hips and knees, so he can get into a flying position.  To infinity and beyond!  Or perhaps more appropriate would be Dan's tag line, "To the future of the past!"

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