As part of our upcycling expedition, we decided to create a psychedelic art piece reminiscent of the 60’s era.
To make one of your own, here’s what you will need!
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.
Step 1: Materials List
RGB LED strips 12 V DC
RGB Control Box (you can hack one out of Christmas lights)
12V DC Adapter
Multi stranded wire (lots of it…although depends on how big a piece are you planning on making)
Soldering set-up (solder iron, soldering station, solder flux, soldering wire/solder (Simply))
Cardboard (2 big pieces ,one for the back & one for the front and some border pieces to help with the box making )
Aluminium Foil (simple food wrapping kind)
Step 2: Step 1:
Get two pieces of identical sized cardboard/wood. And draw, then cut/carve out the design you wish to highlight. Below are a couple of examples you can build on.
Step 3: Step 2:Mapping.
That’s an important part of the process even if it doesn’t look much, we found that out the hard way.
Place all your LED Strip pieces (shown in picture, one piece has around 2-3 LEDs) Make a map on how you are going to place the LED strips.
Basically, connect the LEDs through a pen trail, making an actual path that you can follow to solder your way through.Hence preventing Chaos. Important Tip:Try placing them near the cut out parts, makes the effect more pronounced.Now to get the mad design as in the video, we recommend taking the led strips piece by piece and connecting the RGB points of each piece (containing around 2-3 LEDs) randomly to the next one. Case in point: Connecting R of LED piece 1 to the G point of the next piece.
Pro Tip: Keep checking the connections by testing them with a 12V DC adapter every few connections.(And troubleshoot accordingly)
Step 4: Step 3:
Now that you have a working map…super glue the pieces of LEDs firmly to the cardboard. BUT NOT THE SOLDERING ENDS. You kinda need those…
Step 5: Step 4: Solder It Out
After that is done, inter-connect all the +12V DC solder points, as shown in the picture.
Now to get an interesting pattern all you need to do is randomly connect the rest of the three(RGB) points to the RGB points of the next LED strip through soldering. Jumble it up….as much as you can with 3 points to choose from.
We basically have 4 points to solder at the end of each LED strip.
As long as you solder DC 12V points together without shorting, you can connect the rest three whichever way you wish.
Keep the DC point from shorting with any other point.
When you are done, well it's going to look something like the second picture,not pretty but wait...we're getting there!
Step 6: Step 5:RGB Color Controller for Mad Patterns
Solder the RGB Control Box points to the last LED strip you soldered.Again, don’t forget to solder the DC point of the LED to the DC point of the RGB controller. And the rest three namely R,G and B can be connected as wished (but don’t short them)
Step 7: Step 6: Butter Paper Overload
Turn the cardboard/wooden piece to the other side.This is the actual front part of your Art piece. On this side, fix the butter paper sheet through normal glue or paper tape(suggested). And, try not over-lapping it very much…as that will be visible as well.
Step 8: Step 7:
Now, for the other cardboard piece.
This is the part that’s going to reflect the light (remember the aluminium foil?) and mixing up a neat pattern.
Make an enclosure, kind of box out of this one (refer to the picture for more clarity)…all the while keeping the dimensions of the front in mind.
Our suggestion: add in 4 centimeter strips perpendicular/vertically to the ends of the board with tape and super glue (careful with this one). Do a similar enclosure for the LED covered side of the first board, just slightly small in overall size (so that they fit together). Now, cover the cardboard box inside with aluminium foil (shiny wrapping paper if you wish)
(Picture noteThe Butter paper box doesn't look boxed..but trust us: it is.)
Step 9: Step 8: You Are My Support System
Now, to support the cardboard pieces and prevent depression in the middle portions on the board, making supporters is recommended. All you need to do is, take two squares of cardboard of the same height that you wish to keep between the front and back cardboards. Cut them about halfway through creating slits as shown in the images. And join them to create a supporter as can be seen in the images. Cover these with aluminium foil as well.
Fix the supporters in the board where you feel is required (dents and valleys are always indicators)
Step 10: Last But Not the Least: Unite!
Bring it all together, as in attach the two boards and fix them together with more paper tape.