Maker Project Lab
October 17, 2016 AUTHOR: Donald Bell CATEGORIES: Project Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

$5 DIY Poké Ball

My DIY Pokeball made from $5 in materials.

My son’s going as Pokémon Trainer Ash Ketchum for Halloween this year, so I was inspired to make him a Poké Ball for his costume.

I was initially inspired by this Instructable, which also uses a plastic Christmas ornament. I took it in a different direction by using the grommet and furniture glider, and using acrylic paint on the inside. You can get a pretty good feel for the project from the photos I posted on Imgur (embedded below).

Items you’ll need (Amazon links):

DIY Pokeball

April 28, 2016 0 Comments AUTHOR: Donald Bell CATEGORIES: News Tags: , , , , ,

Hello world!

Donald at Fablab Berlin

Welcome to the lab. What I’m attempting here with Maker Project Lab is a space to rebuild, evaluate, and review other people’s projects (O.P.P.).

So, why review projects? Well, the short answer is that it’s something I’ve been trained to do, so I may as well do it. When I was a Projects Editor at Make: magazine, my job was to find great projects, rebuild them, fix errors, and make the instructions as clear and easily understood as possible before running it in the magazine. In a way that’s what I’ll continue to do here, though it remains to be seen how much I’ll be publishing project instructions or something closer to tips and annotations that point back to the original project.

The longer, more thoughtful answer is that I believe that the Maker community needs a place to reflect on their best work and possibly refine it. A place that sifts through and polishes up the best of what’s been done and sheds some pretty words on what makes it so good and why others should make it too.

I love the group of artists, engineers and tinkerers that make up the Maker movement. I have never known a more enthusiastic, motivated, intelligent and inspiring community of people. It may sound obvious, but Maker’s are extraordinarily good at making new things. Every day, I check the feed of new projects coming from places like Instructables, Make, and Hackaday, and it’s like standing under a waterfall.

But — and I believe this is true with any creative pursuit — the people who make a thing aren’t always in the best position to explain it. And instead of putting in the work required to explain it better, they do what they do best and move on to their next invention.

I don’t think that’s a bad thing. No one expected Pablo Picasso to make a beautiful work of art, then write a book on how he made it, beginning with a foreward on why his art is important and how his style fits within the canon of great art. But somehow, we expect this of Makers, and it doesn’t always work.

So, for my part, I’m going to let Maker’s make, and use my skill set as an editor and wordsmith to select and highlight great projects, kits, and tools, and help them reach a wider audience. If that sounds like something you’d enjoy, be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel, sign up on the email list, and follow Maker Project Lab on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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