Sunday, 13 May 2012

Crisp Stand

Lauren-Prior Smith from the second year of our course made us some fantastic props to go in the pasty shop set, including lots of teeny tiny packets of crisps. To display the crisps, we thought it would be a good idea to make a stand for them to sit in just like real bakeries have. So this was the next prop I got started on... and I am very glad it's done now because it was a tad bit tricky to make! The first section I made was the main 'stand,' which was pretty easy to construct. I simply glued a few wooden lolly sticks together and cut them into a square once they had dried to make the base. I then glued a taller piece of metal tubing onto one of the sides of the wooden square to make the main stand. It was a bit fiddly trying to fix the tube onto the wooden base because the araldite glue I was using was being stubborn and not setting. So to make the structure sturdier and add extra surface area for glueing, i glued a piece of aluminium wire across the tubing and bade to ensure that it was secure and sturdy enough to hold the crisps in the end:
I wasn't sure how to go about attaching the crisps to the stand, and initially thought it would be a good idea to bend a long piece of aluminium wire into little baskets for the crisps to sit in. This however turned out to be easier said than done, because the wire was difficult to push into place and the baskets ended up looking really messy and clumsy. So I ended up scrapping these first attempts and tried a different approach by glueing separate sections of wire to make a similar basket shape. However once again the araldite glue was misbehaving and not setting properly (I don't think I mixed it correctly and once the glue did finally set, the sections of wire easily snapped away from each other. After some torrents of foul language I gave up on the baskets and sulked over a cup of tea.
Once I had calmed down (tea is very soothing) I decided to forget about the wire baskets and instead attach a series of shelves, one on top of the other with a bit of space in between, all the way up the middle aluminium tubing stand. To do this, I followed the same process of making the wooden base by sticking together lolly sticks and cutting three equal squares to make up the shelves. The crisps would fall off the shelves without some sort of restraints, so I thought it would be good to attach a railing around each shelf. To do this, I bore a hole into the corners of each shelf using a sharp tool. This was fiddly because the wood started to splinter if you pushed too hard, so I secured the shelves with a layer of masking tape to hold their shape. Once the holes were wide enough, I cut and bent small pieces of thin aluminium wire, and carefully inserted each end of a section into the holes and secured them with superglue:
Now that the shelves were complete, I could attach them to the main stand. To do this, I glued each shelf on individually with a piece of wire behind it like I did with the base using araldite glue once again (this time I learnt my lesson and made sure I stablised it with gaffa tape and left it to dry.)I repeated the same process for each of the shelves and also attached a small piece of wood onto the top of the stand as a sign.
We thought the stand would look nice if it looked all 'metal' so I sprayed it with an initial grey undercoat and then sprayed a layer of metallic paint over the surface. However it didn't look quite right when it was all metallic, So I painted the lolly stick shelves and base a light beige colour and then brushed wood varnish over the surface to bring back the wood effect again. I left the wire a metallic colour, but painted the wooden sign the same green as the outside shop walls and added the text 'crisps' onto the surface with a thin brush and white acrylic paint.
At last the structure was finally complete, so I glued the crisp packets straight onto the shelves so that they wouldn't move during filming. Here is the finished result... phew!:

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