Collaborative projects are are very satisfying. Sometimes I am asked to make rolling ball sculpture parts for a much larger project that has many people involved.
Working with a fabulous team of people I make rolling ball sculpture that seamlessly integrates into a large project.
My favorite collaborative project to date has to be the Boomsday Project with Blizzard. Building a Rube Goldberg machine was totally awesome. It was amazing to work with other craftsman building connected pieces in an unusual way. I was there for 11 days, with the last day being shoot day. Very cool to see all of the effort put into filming in Hollywood.
All of these projects required me to work on location and fly out with my welder and tools.
The Boomsday Project
Blizzard’s Hearthstone Boomsday Project! August 2018 A Rube Goldberg Machine for the release of their newest card pack.
I was responsible for the tracks used by the two steel balls, the giant flaming tennis ball, and the chain lift. There were 4 of us on the team responsible for creating this Rube Goldberg machine in just 2 weeks.
Interesting note: The machine was cut to pieces just 20 minutes after the last of the shooting was completed. Striking the shoot immediately after finished.
Check it Out!
Recently I flew down to LA to work on an “Escape Room” that was being developed. Terry, one of the Chief builders, contacted me because they needed a way to get the ball from one room, through the walls of the other rooms, and drop into a box at it’s completion, over 85 feet away. Terry told me that they had gone pretty far down the road on trying to make some kind of track system they could install themselves. But nothing panned out and each option they tried had severe roadblocks of one kind or another that made it nearly impossible to achieve what they envisioned. The track was in Act II (of III) of the Escape room puzzle. It’s the final puzzle for Act II and allows the door to open for Act III.They were using a 3″ steel ball. Hollow so it would not weight a huge amount, but thick walled, so it was not too light either. I ended up building 84 feet of 4 rail (fully enclosed) track that was suspended from the ceiling so you could follow the ball through it’s path just by looking up. I built the tracks before the walls (sheet rock) are installed – so going though the walls and from room to room was fairly easy. It’ll be the poor sheet rock guys who will have to hang their stuff around my tracks and supports holding the tracks in place. I built the track completely on the floor following the needed path. Once it was completed I lifted it up and attached the tracks to the metal wall studs.
I had a really great time in LA for those 4 days. I did manage to go to an working Escape Room and try one out for the first time. It was very cool figuring out the numerous puzzles. And would have beaten the record for the room if we had not asked for a clue. But that’s only because I was with seasoned Escape roomers. This was Terry’s 60th! room.
Check out the video below to see what I had built. I really hope they will have me down again to do a bit more finish work to the tracks and I get a chance to see the room finished and try it out!
Admittedly the video is not that good. And I did not get my final video of the ball rolling once the tracks were suspended. This shows about 2/3rds of the entire length while still on the floor. Plus a photo or two.
This very unusual project was developed for Derse, an Exhibitor company that builds displays for large trade shows. This project was different in that it only had one track – a 110 foot oval that was 42 feet long and 24 feet wide that was suspended about 12 feet above the floor.
The idea here was for the participant to choose a ball color based on why they chose neurology as their profession. Once the color was chosen the person would place the ball in a spiral on the table. The ball would travel down the spiral, into the cabinet under the spiral, and then out the side into a tall 13 foot chain lift. Once lifted the ball would traverse the oval and then at the end, drop into a large acrylic brain. There the balls would collect and the people at the convention could easily see why others’ had chosen Neurology as their life’s passion. I flew out to Chicago to mock it up and then flew out to Boston for the show to make sure installation was right and to address any issues that might arise. A terrific trip! We had a view of the Boston Harbor from our hotel window… never turned on the TV even once.
Here is another large collaborative project that was seen in NY December, 2015. Envisioned by Syyn Labs for Target, the attractions were mostly built by LA Fabricators in Los Angeles. Mel Gragirena runs a tight, witty ship. : ) I had a fantastic time, working alongside fun, professional, creative people to produce this Holiday Pop Up for Target Stores, Inc. The video below shows my “Ball Machine” that was placed in a room by itself near where people enter the building. Then they exit and walk down a hallway into another, larger room with 10 more attractions. Watch the second video for a time lapse of the setup and opening of the Target Christmas Popup – “WONDERLAND”. I got to spend 13 days in Manhattan to install this masterpiece and it was an amazingly fun time to experience New York up close and personal. Special thanks to Adam Sadowsky of Syyn Labs.
Wonka Golden Ticket
For Christmas Season 2011, I helped Syyn Labs with part of their Wonka display which was used at the Times Square Toys’R’Us in New York!
I built a giant Rolling Ball Sculpture that carried candy marbles to the Wonka candy processing machines!
You can see me in the video below, at about 40 seconds in you can see me tending to and welding on this giant Rolling CandyBall Sculpture!