Introduction: Self Replicating Art That Uses Web As a Vector of Transmission Through Physical Space in Coffee Shops

About: I'm an applied physicist by training(phd Yale 2006, BA Berkeley 1998, math and physics), and have done physics research in the federal government and product development in the private sector, starting two of …

This art is a physical thing that self replicates using Pinterest and Instructables as a transmission vector, spreading in physical space in coffee shops. You need some scrap paper, a pen, a transparent drink lid of the kind used on iced drinks, and a wood stir stick of the kind that has at least one edge straight. Also, if you want to color it in I suggest 6 crayons: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. Document as you go and post to the Web for further transmission.

Step 1: Draw a Dot

Use pen to draw a dot on the paper.

Step 2: Draw Circle Centered on Dot

The lines for the hole for the straw act like a set of crosshairs and you can close one eye and place the other eye *directly* above the lid to align the lid to the dot. Then *gently* place your finger of your non-dominant hand on the middle of the lid, and draw a circle with the pen, again being gentle to avoid flattening the lid and changing the circle(it is essential that your circle size stay fixed as you go along). This operation can take some practice both for the pen hand and the lid hand, so try a few times on other scrap paper first.

Step 3: Add Second Circle

Draw a dot somewhere on your first circle, then repeat the process of the previous step, but using your new dot/point as the center, again being very careful to not spread the lid out. This second circle should go through the first center point. The shape of two circles like this is important enough in geometry that it has a name, the vesica piscis. It appears all over the place in religion, symbology and also practical geometry and engineering design. Many neat patterns start here, so it gets its own step.

Step 4: Draw 5 Remaining Circles

You want a total of 7 circles, and you have two now. To complete the remaining 5, go around your middle point, repeating the process of finding intersections between circles and making those your center point, repeating as you go around until you have a full star/flower as shown. This is already a shape worth coloring in and spreading, but I'm going to mov on to the straightedge instead.

Step 5: Add Link

This is the DNA. Without some kind of link, the thing won't spread. You don't have to link back to the original author, all this work is in the public domain, so you can link to your own social media or an anonymous image sharing site, whatever works. But you want data that can easily spread via smart phone or computer somehow, and it's not hard to think of something. My pinterest pin board shown here also works, and I can add anyone who wants to do this as a collaborator on that board and more examples can get put on there.

Step 6: Draw Many Lines

You can draw lines as shown to make a star, or do any of a infinite number of line patterns which will all look cool and mostly have 6 fold symmetry of one kind or another.

Step 7: Color It In

I use the rainbow colors, all in crayon: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet. But you can use paint, cutouts from magazines, colored pencils, markers, colored pens, or cut out rags. All will work.