Sunday, January 24, 2010

Lighted Sculpture: Branch Lamp

I spent so long getting this to hold together. So long. I initially wanted to make two swoops of claw branches, each swoop a spray of curved and knobbly branches. I tried making these claws so many times. Eventually I got one, but it used an interesting doubled over root structure that I only had one of. So my several attempts to make a matching claw were failures. So I tried building like a curve lamp thing with the swoop I liked but it didn't look balanced. So I ripped it apart and kept only the claw thing. And then I took off a lot of it to make it less cluttered. I snapped off the two narrow or odd direction parts. Then I painted it. I wanted it a light delicate color but I needed to make the base black to hide the nylons I used to anchor everything. So I did a black/purple/gold/yellow/white gradation which I love. The tips just fade out in space.

Then it got dark and I turned it on. Oops. I thought a bulb would cast a shadow of what was next to it but light casts sharper shadows of things that are a little ways away. Even by turning it all directions and holding it close to the wall I couldn't get a remotely clear shadow. Also, the bulb wasn't hidden. I knew I wasn't covering the bulb but I thought the sticks would obscure it. But no, it hurts my eyes to look at. Always sad when your project literally hurts to look at. So, what? Do I detach the light and use it as a wall.... thing? A hanging... thing? I know I could wire LEDs to the tips but how would that use the nice shape I made? Also I don't totally know that I could wire LEDs to be plugged in to the wall which is how I want all of my sculptures to be usable. So I'm thinking of making a translucent covering and just putting the bulb in it. I want to be able to run thin, exposed wires up each stick to a tiny round incandescent bulb. I bet they have that. I bet my prof knows.

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