Paper Iron Man and K-2SO

Silicon Valley Comic Con

We were approached by the organisers of the Silicon Valley Comic Con to create a life-size paper sculpture of Iron Man for their first event at the 30,000 capacity San Jose Convention Centre. For this project I brought in my regular collaborator Thomas Forsyth to take charge of production duties, and together we devised an inner foamboard framework on which we then built the paper shell. Tom also helped to bring the model to life by rigging up some LEDs in the eyes and chest – see an example video here.

We built the models in separate parts at my studio over a four week period and then shipped the individual components out to San Jose where we pieced the model together live at the show over the course of the three day events.

After the hugely positive response to our Iron Man build in 2016, the organisers of the Silicon Valley Comic Con asked us back for a second year, to develop a new paper sculpture to wow the crowds in 2017. With the recent release of the new Star Wars film Rogue One, we all decided that it had to be the incredible new humanoid robot K-2SO.

Tom used a selection of CAD programs to design and create a usable "life-size" model (measuring in at 2160mm tall) and then to break it down into it's paper net parts, so that we could set about cutting and assembling this insanely complex jigsaw puzzle of a sculpture. 

Due to the robots slim joints, we also needed to devise a new type of framework that could not only hold the paper shell of the model firmly in place, but that could also be dissembled for shipping to the event in San José, California.

To add some life to the model, Tom also set about prototyping a bespoke mechanism and 3D printed parts, which could be attached and screwed to the paper head form of K-2SO, all carefully designed so that the sculpture can also be dissembled and serviced. He fitted custom-built electronic lights into the head for eyes and a pan/tilt servo motor mechanism into the neck so that the whole head could move, which we then wrote a uniquely coded computer program for, to give it uncanny and unpredictable animation.

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