Let’s go back in time, all the way back to early October, 2014. MadRim Productions was a mere fledgling enterprise, and our involvement and understanding of the maker movement was mostly limited to fantastical and intangible stories we’d read on the internet. Somehow Madison convinced the Colorado Maker Hub to grant us press status, so we slipped into the Rocky Mountain Center for Innovation and Technology free of charge.
You can stare at Matt Knoeck’s art for minutes or days and keep finding new creatures, beasts hidden within beasts, drawn with elaborate precision, each with a different expression and stance. His ink drawings exist as a comprehensive whole, but when you look closer you realize even more is going on there: monsters pile into bigger monsters, and under the surface of the whole, hundreds of creatures make war and love and fun.
Walking into DenHac is like stepping into a science fiction novel, a realm where hours (and beers) disappear. Sometimes you walk in with broken equipment and out with fixed. Sometimes it’s the other way around. It’s alternately very loud with activity and very silent with concentration. Surfaces littered with machinery and equipment, computers and gadgets, a sewing machine, tubes of all diameters, and random kitchen utensils, stickers, and styrofoam skulls (turns out they weren’t just for Halloween). Laptops and wires tangle on the main work table, far more computers than people. The hacker space operates according to an unspoken formula of organized chaos, indelicate and constantly fluctuating. It’s member driven, and that can mean anything at any time. There’s a lot of spontaneous experimentation for experimentation’s sake. I think they recently destroyed a microwave.
It got worse before it got better. And then it got hilarious, and then it got hysterical.
It’s the dark side of Madulthood. The incessant struggle, the realization that all our stuff is in a state of decay. Clothes have holes, electronics malfunction, everything is cracked or scratched or dented.
The dark side of Madulthood.The constant application, to jobs, schools, programs. The condition of being so employable, yet not employed. “Applying, not crying,” as Tara says.
MadRim Productions hits the road and finds joy in the ensuing chaos. Madison and I are basically running a business out of her Toyota T100, a very patient and durable vehicle. Still, things vanish all the time, and we’re always sifting through the packs and jackets and sleeping bags and trash for the other shoe or a lighter or sunglasses. All batteries have conspired against us, always empty.
However frustrating it can be, the incessant movement is invigorating. It’s an ideal life, an easy clarity visible through the strung-out anarchy of having no idea what’s going on. We know how to move, how to pack, how to make friends everywhere we go.
Introducing MadRim Productions! We are Madison and Miriam, new filmmakers, two seriously funny, bad-ass Millennials from the mountains of Colorado. Self-Made is the story of sustainable industry, a documentary about the vibrant world of Fabrication Labs, where artists and engineers are collaborating to reinvent the way we make things. The planet is changing, and MadRim Productions will be there to define this new century we’re exploring.
My last post introduced the MakerSpace, local workshops all over the world where community members are welcome to teach and learn from one another. 3D printing is heralding a revolution in the realm of sustainable manufacturing and production, and MakerSpaces stand in the vanguard of the movement. These inventive workshops emphasize the importance of STEM education and active learning, hands-on application, rather than lecture-based, passive memorization and regurgitation.
Within the overarching MakerSpace umbrella lies another type of community workshop, called a Fabrication Lab. In short, these “Fab Labs” are more structured environments, sponsored and supported by the Fab Foundation. MakerSpaces are less formal, sometimes more focused on a specific type of industry, whereas to be considered a Fab Lab, the space has to fulfill certain requirements set forth by the Fab Foundation, such as a stock list of equipment and a source of financial backing, from grants or membership dues, for example, to ensure the continued existence of the Lab.
Lessons from Bruce “Doc” Davies of the MakerSpace in Chesterfield County Public Library, VA.
10 September: Miriam is heading to Chesterfield County’s Public Library to speak with their Maker Space Director, Bruce “Doc” Davies.
Doc is a retired neuroscientist, now extending his career to include the role of STEM educator. A fascinating leader of innovation, Doc may be able to predict the future, and we want to know: which city will be the first self-sufficient city in The United States?