Forming Units

I wanted to use the overall shape of the assembled net, rather than just one part of it. I tried a number of times to create a 3D form that could interlock at least partially with itself, but in the end I had to give in and simplify it. Rather than use a form that would have different surface areas on the two opposite faces, I decided to start with a 2D shape and make it 3D by extruding it uniformly, so that the two opposite faces would be identical. I played around with the ‘dinosaur-footprint’ shape until I worked out how to draw it so that it could have a fully interlocking configuration. It is essentially five sides of a regular octagon, lines of equal lengths at 45 and 90 degrees. As can be seen from the diagram, the horizontal line ‘A’ relates to the other two horizontal lines by being double their length, so that they can line up together beneath it. The 45 degree lines ‘B’ could be any angle and length, provided that the lines ‘C’ are the same, so that they can line up.

Having created the 2D shape, I created a net on card so that it could be folded and glued to become a 3D form, but with one of the large faces left open. I lined the inside with clingfilm, so that the card would not getting soggy and could be reuse, and pressed damp tissue into the hollow. I left this to dry and repeated three more times. The four bricks produced are wonderfully strong, and heavy enough to stack together with a fair amount of stability. I was also pleased to find that the papier mache construction had the effect of slightly roughening the edges, so that where the bricks met, the shadows produced really interesting chasm-like textures.



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