The Ultimate Nerdbait: How to Make Scannable QR Code Bar Code Street Art

Picture of The Ultimate Nerdbait: How to Make Scannable QR Code Bar Code Street Art
I wanted to promote my website, www.awkwardengineer.com, but wanted a more original way to get the word out then simple QR codes or advertisements.  I wanted to make street art out of it.

This a tutorial on how to make street art stencils out of them. No smartphone toting nerd can resist the allure when they see one painted on the sidewalk they're walking on. They have to scan it.

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Step 1: Where to Get the Code

Picture of Where to Get the Code
Just use Google to find a QR Code Generator

Step 2: Making a CAD Model of the Stencil

Picture of Making a CAD Model of the Stencil
I traced the QR Code into a CAD program.  It took me about one lunch break.  I also connected some of the corner pieces so they wouldn't be "knife edges".  The codes are pretty robust and forgiving to little doodads like that.

Step 3: Cutting Out the Stencil

Picture of Cutting Out the Stencil
I cut my stencil out of a sheet of scrap aluminum.

Step 4: Painting with the Stencil!

Picture of Painting with the Stencil!
Spray paint works too, but I wanted something that would wash off, so I used finger paint.

Step 5: The Finished Product

Picture of The Finished Product
This is what the finished product looks like.  You can even scan the image!  It goes to my website, www.awkwardengineer.com
kimblebear4 years ago
Waht a fantastic idea

So simple - but then again all great ideas are

andy707074 years ago
Awesome, I just need to find someone with a laser cutter now. We have one at college, but I doubt they would just let me use it for my own project. Its about 30 years old and randomly cuts off things you don't want.
That could be (will be) a huge problem for qr codes..
Excellent idea..just gotta try this!
I think its a great idea. I think you could also use the common craft store stencil blanks or card stock, and just print this from your computer to print, then use the friendly ol exacto knife and some time cutting out all the black parts to reveal the stencil for painting. Before the days of plastic stencils, we used to put linseed oil on the card stock so it was strong to paints. Nowdays, kids use a sticker program and put stickers all over town - comes off in the rain or just eventually wears off.

Also, you could spray watered down washable paint with a spray bottle, too.
phenoptix4 years ago
Awesome, simple instructable but so effective!
Oh hey, is it phenoptix from eBay? I have bought many of your 0603 SMD LEDs :)
That's me! Thanks for all your custom!! I'm a long time lurker and once contributor to instructables! Are you an xbox modder? Seems most of our 0603 SMD customers are!
Yea, I have a website selling xbox mods. I buy most of my LEDs from you! 
Nice clean site! Fast too. Any why only most?!
Thanks, I usually get a few 0603s with my mod chips, but as my supplier no longer sells them, I have to buy the chips and program them myself, so I will require more LEDs, I will probably buy from you. I will probably buy 100 or so soon.
I look forward to hearing from you! Have you seen the new site yet? www.phenoptix.com