20th Century Design Movements: Dummy Calf

For my project, I am making a dummy roping calf out of PVC pipe. My goal aesthetic is centered around the PVC pipes and the colors I will be using. I want the PVC to give it a thrown together, keep it in the barn kind of feel. I will be using paint splatter as an aesthetic to make it more interesting, as well as adding another element of slightly unfinished and imperfect feel. I think the colors of the PVC pipe will be the most important part of making it look good, so I decided to mostly re-imagine what I could do with painting it.

Three alternate aesthetics for this project:

  1. Golden Age comics
  2. Chrome/High Tech
  3. Organic Design

1.) Golden Age Comics

Source: Pinterest.com [1]

I think it would be fun to have paint my PVC pipe with the colors and themes that are seen in very old comic books. I always loved the “action bubbles” when a superhero would punch someone and a balloon that said “POW!” would appear. I would paint the PVC with traditional colors found in comic books, and then create a bunch of these action bubbles all over it. I think it would come out as a completely off the wall, different design decision.


2.) Chrome/High Tech

I have always loved the shine from chrome. If I were to go after this aesthetic, I think I would need to use chrome rods and attach them to make a dummy calf as opposed to using PVC pipe. This would add more work, and take away the unfinished side. If I made this out of chrome rods, I likely would not want to leave it in my backyard to get rained on and such. Having a shiny chrome roping dummy would be very cool though. I always love seeing cars that are painted chrome.

Source: AlsaCorp.com [2]

3.) Organic Design

I also had the idea to use wood to make this. I wouldn’t want to make it out of a bunch or random boards stuck together. That would look too unfinished. Nailing scrap wood together would just look like abstract art in this case. If I did go with the wood route, I would incorporate principles of organic design. I think it could look cool as a well crafted, solid piece of woodworking. However, once again I don’t think I would want to leave this out in the rain and let it take on the elements for too long.

Source: Pinterest.com [3]




[1]: https://www.pinterest.com/msx3na/pow-bam-wham-zap-boom/

[2]: http://alsacorp.com/chrome-fx-machines-spray-chrome-paint-systems/

[3]: https://www.pinterest.com/alexiaderby/art-deco-minimalist-organic-design-movement/

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • Well thought out! I agree that the splatter paint design is the best aesthetic for the project, materials, and time available. The comic book aesthetic is interesting, but less in-tune with the project. For the organic and chrome aesthetics- they are very interesting, but your current aesthetic is better for the materials available. Nice job!

  • Kira Sadighi
    April 4, 2017 11:18 am

    Hi Colton,
    I think you project is so unique, and it sounds like you’d actually use it which is cool. For your comics idea, I wonder if you could somehow use actual comics on it? Like what if you took the pages from a comic book and glued them to the PVC? Then you could seal it with something (Polyurethane? ) to weather-proof. I guess I’m confused why the “being in the barn” aesthetic and PVC are compatible. I would think wood is found in barns more often than PVC? Maybe the aesthetic is more “home-made” or “arts and crafts”. Also it seems that you’re pretty concerned about wanting to weather-proof your project. Maybe that doesn’t have to limit what design aesthetic you choose. Are there treatments for wood and chrome that could help it survive outside? It will be neat to see what you choose to do!


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