British Isles 3D Map From Masking Tape

3,946

62

10

Introduction: British Isles 3D Map From Masking Tape

About: I'm based in London - in my day job I make digital things and at night I tinker with art, maps and electronics.

The original spark of this idea came when I read a story about a banana duct-taped to a wall by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan. It sold at an art auction for $120,000. (If you google "banana duct tape art" you can see a picture.)

As you might imagine, lots of people thought it was ridiculous and I in some ways it kind of was, but that's not the point. I think someone tore it down and ate it in the end. Anyway, I digress. It got me thinking that the value of art isn't about the cost of the materials used to make it. You can make something beautiful out of dirt-cheap materials.

For me, maps are beautiful things, so I set out to make a 3D map of the British Isles using masking tape.

Supplies

  • Mount board
  • Thin masking tape
  • Pointy stick
  • Pencil
  • Frame

Step 1: The Making

The process was quite time-consuming, but pretty simple.

First I drew the outline of the British Isles onto the board in pencil and then got to work with the tape.

I took the tape and stuck it to the board in horizontal stripes and when I got to the land, and particularity mountains, I would 'ruffle' it up to give it some height and texture. Mostly the tape goes continuously all the way across the board, but sometimes I added some extra bits if there were some big features to get in.

That was pretty much it! I put it in a frame with no glass to make sure the light catches the contours and we're done.

Step 2: The Finished Map

It was a gift for my mum and we hung it in a bright room by a window so the light picks up the contours. When there's direct light on it, the map almost disappears but then changes throughout the day depending on the conditions.

Maps Challenge

Participated in the
Maps Challenge

Be the First to Share

    Recommendations

    • Back to School: Student Design Challenge

      Back to School: Student Design Challenge
    • Retro Tech Challenge

      Retro Tech Challenge
    • Micro:bit Contest

      Micro:bit Contest

    10 Comments

    0
    SueMaryT
    SueMaryT

    1 year ago

    Wow, this is really cool. A bit time consuming, as you said, but the effect is really wild. Even though the video is fast it is still really easy to see how you did it. Now I just need to find white masking tape....

    0
    robhallifax
    robhallifax

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks! This is the tape I used, but you could use anything really. Hope you have fun giving it a go!

    MVIMG_20200814_105137.jpgMVIMG_20200814_105130.jpg
    0
    dlebryk
    dlebryk

    1 year ago

    Hunh, so the instructable is, draw a map, lay tape on the drawing and ruffle the pieces as you go. And the magic of this instructable, the ruffling of the tape is sped up in the video. And the type of tape to use isn't described. Hunh.

    The end result, however you did it, is pretty.

    0
    robhallifax
    robhallifax

    Reply 1 year ago

    I used masking tape for this - maybe that's not the same name in the US?

    That's a good point about not showing the technique more slowly - I should've done that. It's very simple though. Takes some practice but it's just a case of giving it a go really.

    0
    Margie J
    Margie J

    1 year ago on Step 2

    Great idea, very nicely done. I want to try doing this but will have to wait as I have to many other things going right now. Thanks for the beautiful idea!

    0
    robhallifax
    robhallifax

    Reply 1 year ago

    The nice thing about the technique is that it works on any scale and it's quick and easy to start off with a small one.

    0
    AnandM54
    AnandM54

    1 year ago

    Creative idea and nicely did it!!!!

    0
    robhallifax
    robhallifax

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks!

    0
    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    1 year ago

    That's an impressive technique :)

    0
    robhallifax
    robhallifax

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thanks!