Transforming a Tenacious Printer Into an Extraordinary Edifice.

Introduction: Transforming a Tenacious Printer Into an Extraordinary Edifice.

This Print Shop was created to assist in funding my college education. The company running the scholarship put forth a challenge to create ANYTHING out of laser toner, old printers, or used ink cartridges. Due to the ambiguous nature of the project, I was slightly stumped as to what I would create, but I knew that I would be inspired with a genius idea, and that I only needed to press forward and the way would be prepared.

Make-to-Learn Youth Contest

What I created:
I made a Print Shop, intended to promote recycling by the rustic accents encrusted on the building. The company logo, written in nails, springs, and bits of plastic, copper, and rubber salvaged from the inner workings of the three dissected printers, is a representation of blatant recycling. The shop itself manufactures printers out of recycled parts and also provides rare printer parts for machines in need of repair. There was one main tool used for this masterpiece- a screw driver. Infrequent usage of a rasp, hot glue gun, and scissors also took place. The majority of the demolition of the printer came from man power-using hands and feet to pry apart the panels.

How The Shop Was Made:
The process began by unscrewing the underside of the printer, prying off the plastic panels, employing the crow bar between plastic and metal to break of supports, stripping the printer of the primary layer and delving into the second surface. Another round of unscrewing took place followed by more prying, tugging, and wire snipping. After gleaning a cup full of screws and springs, a pile of metal parts, two boxes of plastic paneling, half a box of circuit boards, and other assorted printer pieces, experimentation began. Holding different metal and plastic parts together to create a building form, using side panels from the printer to make doors, creating a shop sign out of screws and nails, a tree from a silver rod and brass printer parts, and grass from circuit boards transformed a pile of parts into an upright structure with landscaping and all!

Where The Project Came Together:
This structure was made in my basement. Building the shop became my life, in a way. Each day after school I would head to the basement, tools in hand, to uncover another layer of the printer. I would work until track practice, it was hard to leave mid being on a  creative roll, return home, and press on. I always had something to keep me busy while the printer project was in place. 

The Learning Process
The biggest challenge that presented itself was creating something totally abstract and unheard of out of materials I was not familiar with. I'm accustomed to using materials such as frames, scrapbook paper, looms, paint, flowers, buttons and jewels, but metal and plastic, that was a whole different ball game. Especially considering I wanted the object created to look aesthetically pleasing, and not like a pile of cheap plastic from an old printer. I was pleasantly surprised how well the Shop came together. Typically when I begin a project I don't have a plan, I just start creating, and a masterpiece forms. I was blessed to have such a process take place with this particular projecting, seeing as I was a bit skeptical of the potential of printer parts. Were I to re-created this project, I would employ power tools, research a more effective way to expose all sides of the printer, and borrow a high quality camera for optimum photograph detail.

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Full Spectrum Laser Contest

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Green Electronics Challenge

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