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Art Contest: Win an Instructables Book! Answered

We need art for a book and since we think that the Instructables community has plenty of talent and ideas we thought that this is the perfect opportunity for a contest. The theme of the contest is Fail Gracefully. Read on more more details.

Eric Wilhelm, our glorious CEO of infinite repute, has been invited to go and talk atOFFF in Portugal in May. As an invited speaker he also gets to supply some art for the event catalog. The theme is Fail Gracefully and the idea is to embrace mistakes in your efforts. Here's their own description:


Be afraid of perfection. Dare to do wrong. Make mistakes. Enjoy 404. Reject everything you know and jump. Try to fly.

There is no such thing as failure, but experience. No mistakes, but mistaken views. Errors? We call them acieeed(sp).

So the last sentence is a bit confusing, but you get the idea. We're giving away a copy of The Best of Instructables, Volume 1 for the best piece of art and the possibility of being published in the catalog.

How to enter
- To enter your art, just attach it to a comment in this forum post.
- The art needs to be printable so make sure that you have a copy that is high-res.
- By high-res we mean 300 dpi
- The attachment can be low-res
- Enter by March 12th, 2009


This ties into some images I was already working on - I'll try to finish something up by the deadline. The event seems totally awesome and it's great that Eric gets to go!

This is out of a series I've been working on for months. I found some archived images of old factories and I've been building designs over them. It's about how abandoned spaces are considered obsolete but they're still full of potential for someone with new ideas. The company that used to be here failed, but the building is still there as a record. They probably made things that people wanted and needed, but those things stopped being useful just like the building. We're surrounded by things that will stop being useful, but they'll be replaced by new things made by people with new ideas. The image is available at way more than 300 dpi, this is just a low-res preview.


Please find attached as my entry. The mask & helmet are original creations, as is the final image. L


Umm, pilot and co-pilot on a bombing run?

(ha ha) I haven't really fixed a title, so I'll bear that one in mind. Inspired by Ozzy. L


9 years ago

I know my entry is 250dpi, but if that isn't good enough, I have no other copy, the actual drawing got wrecked. :(

Here's my entry. If anyone has an suggestions for improvements (like color), I'd be more than happy to improve it. It was originally hand drawn, but I scanned it (300 dpi) and traced it to vector with Flash. Enjoy!

Caveman Fail.jpg

Worth a shot...


Add a scuba-diver with a pair of ping-pong bats!

That's ridiculous..... They would need ping-pong paddles.

Hmm, I'm think maybe you didn't get the picture because you haven't heard about the crash landing. A plane's engines cut out and the pilot turned the crash landing into a good landing right into the Hudson river.

I saw that - I just thought it would add humour if there was somebody guiding him in.

Oh, haha. Now I get it. I thought you were saying to have them be playing under water, which didn't seem very relevant. Now it makes sense! They'll need to be light up paddles/bats though.


9 years ago

Here is my entry for the contest. Yes, I know, it is 250dpi, and not 300... FORGIVE MEEEE!!!!! My scanner would not allow such a high-res scan without freezing my computer up, but I think this is close enough. If you like my entry, you can tell me so, but if you don't... well... express it in a positive manner. :D Enjoy anyways!


Try taking a picture of it with a digital camera.

A full-size copy of my artwork will be given to anyone who asks. Whenever I upload the artwork, it shrinks it!!!!!! :(

Yeah, they gets compressed to save bandwidth. Good luck!

I have a book already but I'll put this up for inspiration. You know where to find the rest...


Is that the inflatables robot blowing up Eric Wilhelm? Or am I getting the wrong joke? :D

Haha, nice! Especially the one with Nacho.


9 years ago

Do we have to sign something giving you rights to our art?

i dont quite get the theme, "fail gracefully." can anyone give me an example?

Failing at something, but not sulking. Making the best of a bad job.

how would i draw that? is that kind of like penecilin, where the guy's experiment failed, but he found something better?

Haven't you seen Toy Story?

Buzz was falling, but gave it a positive spin.

Imagine - the first man on the moon trips as he climbs down the ladder. Does he scramble about and try and pretend it didn't happen? No, he lies there and makes moondust angels. That is failing gracefully.

no they pack up everything and go back home, Stanley Kubrick re flims it for them

What a fantastic allegory (if that`s the right word)! You are a poet!

Thank you.

Unfortunately, I am not an artist, otherwise I would have drawn that and entered it.

(It is an original idea, copyright me, but anybody else can feel free to have a stab at drawing it. Just send me a copy when you do.)

I might just for the fun of it but I dont think I'll enter it here

thanks! ill think about it and find some inspiration


9 years ago

Here's my art entry It should be 300 dpi
(It's a trampoline at the bottom...)


Um, for some reason the line: "THIS ISN'T FLYING. THIS IS FALLING WITH STYLE"

Seems to take a positive thing and make it negative....should it not read rather something like: This isn't falling, it's random flying ! ?

It's a Toy Story quote and as such is perfectly accurate.

Oops, sorry....I was thinking it had to do with the theme of making a positive attitude out of an potentially negative situation (failure).

it can be I think what they are aiming for is just more of a fail the gracefully part is just showing off your mistakes

I understand....I was just pointing out that the quote seemed counter intuitive with the intent....

I hadn't meant that the quote was inaccurate.....I just though it looked oddly written if we were to make a positive out of a negative, and not the other way around. :-)


9 years ago

I am so entering this.


9 years ago

Would it be too much to ask, if the winner already has one, possibly two instructable books, to request a t-shirt? :-)

I think we can be liberal with the prizes. However, maybe just getting the opportunity to have your art published by OFFF is enough of a motivator? If they give me multiple copies of their book, I'll send those along, too.