Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Design Inspiration: Scan of the Month


"Scan of the Month" is a cool website that shows CT scans of everyday objects (like the asthma inhaler at the top of this post) with fascinating results.

The website started off as some scans of LEGO Minifigures created by a group of creative technologists at the engineering company Lumafield.  

To quote the website:  "Engineering marvels surround us every day. As deeply curious engineers, we thought we understood how beautiful the details around us can be. Then CT scanning revealed a world we had never seen."

So click on over to the Scan of the Month website to reveal a new bit of the world.




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Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

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Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Expecting the Unexpected?


Do you know what's worse than getting COVID?  

Getting COVID far away from home during an important museum installation!

So I'm writing this blog post from isolation in a hotel room in Minot, North Dakota.  It's a drag because right across the street, my fellow museum workers are installing new exhibits which I should be helping with.

Nevertheless, through the wonders of modern communication, we are continuing to work together to move things forward.  

I suppose there's a lesson in there somewhere about flexibility and making the best of how things actually are, not how you wish they were.  

(Check out these ExhibiTricks posts in a similar vein, What's your Plan B? and What's On Your Three Lists?)

I hope if you are encountering some unexpected obstacles of your own, you are finding ways around (or above or below or through) them.

ONWARD!




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Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

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Friday, January 6, 2023

Design Inspiration: If these walls could talk ...


Sometimes a visual or graphic punch can set the mood or transmit a content message in a room or gallery.

An often underutilized exhibition approach involves using wall graphics. With the advent of high-quality digital printing at a large scale, custom wallpaper or dimensional graphics can be a real boon to designers.

One company that provides wallpaper printed to size, either with your own custom images or stock images, is Wallsauce. (One of their wallpapers is in the top image of this post.)

Also, your local printer is likely able to create large-scale dimensional graphics from your files -- see the full-wall installation image from a recent project below.


So take a look around at the walls in your next project and let them "talk"!



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Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

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Sunday, December 18, 2022

Top Ten 2022 Takeaways from ExhibiTricks


One cool thing about my ExhibiTricks blog is that it lets me capture and share ideas.  It's fun as the end of the year approaches to look back at 2022 and see which ideas stood out and "clumped together" in different posts.

So here (in no particular order) are Ten Takeaways from 2022 -- and their related blog posts, in case you missed them the first time around!



1) Museum folks can leverage learnings from pop culture "hits" like TikTok and Wordle




2) Museum installations require flexible thinking
After all the COVID delays, museum activities and exhibition installations have come rushing back through the project pipeline, which prompted three 2022 posts about the installation "mindset"






3) Just One Thing about Exhibits (JOT@Exhibits) 
One of my favorite 2022 "side projects" was a set of short videos asking museum folks from all around the world to share "Just One Thing" about exhibits.  Check out my POW! YouTube channel (and let me know if you'd like to do a JOT video with me in 2023!)

• JOT@Exhibits Videos on YouTube!



4) Museum Workers Unite!
Museum workers continue to unionize to get fair workplace treatment and liveable wages.  Shame on the museum executives and boards who will spend money on union-busting law firms but not on their workers!




5) Awesome Museum/Exhibit/Design Tools!
One of the best things about the museum business is the willingness of so many colleagues to share tools, techniques, and resources they use in their work. That notion of "sharing" continues to motivate my blog.  Here are some awesome tools that popped up in 2022 ExhibiTricks posts:






6) The Exhibit Cheapbooks are now FREE books!
In the spirit of sharing, I still think it's wonderful that nearly 100 free exhibits "recipes" originally contributed by museum colleagues from all over the world into the Exhibit Cheapbooks are now available to download FOR FREE from the POW! website.




7) Newsletters are great repositories for ideas and inspiration  I love newsletters because they help me encounter ideas and people I might not have come across otherwise




8) Exhibits for children are not simply "piles of toys"  I'm biased, but I think some of the most innovative and imaginative exhibit design work comes out of projects geared towards children (and their adult caregivers.)  So perhaps it's not surprising that three 2022 postings touched on exhibits for kids. (A special shout-out to Margaret Middleton, whose work features in two of these posts.)






9) We Missed In-Person Conferences (and they sure beat Zoom!)  Of course, I caught COVID before InterActivity, so I couldn't attend -- which was worse than a Virtual Conference!




10) But don't miss the wonder in our work!
Our work, like all work, sometimes brings stress or frustration but don't let those things override the amazing things we get to encounter in our museum work



Here's wishing all ExhibiTricks readers a peaceful close to 2022 and a healthy, happy, and CREATIVE start to 2023!



Don't miss out on any ExhibiTricks posts! It's easy to get updates via email or your favorite news reader. Just click the "Sign up for Free ExhibiTricks Blog Updates" link on the upper right side of the blog.

Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

If you enjoy the blog, you can help keep it free to read and free from ads by supporting ExhibiTricks through our PayPal "Tip Jar"

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Handy Online Tool: Pirate Ship


Inevitably during remote exhibition installations, a graphic gets left behind, or a missing exhibit piece needs to be shipped to a distant museum site.

Unfortunately, shipping an odd-shaped and/or heavy package quickly (and cheaply!) often turns into an expensive hassle.

Fortunately, one of my museum pals recently made me aware of the online service called Pirate Ship.

You simply go to the Pirate Ship website, enter information about the size and weight of your package, and the website generates a set of options for shipping your package that can save you up to 80% off standard UPS or USPS shipping rates.

You print the shipping label out yourself, and the Pirate Ship service is free and pay-as-you-go, so there are no ongoing costs or subscription charges.

The next time you get caught in an exhibition or installation shipping jam, give Pirate Ship a try!



Don't miss out on any ExhibiTricks posts! It's easy to get updates via email or your favorite news reader. Just click the "Sign up for Free ExhibiTricks Blog Updates" link on the upper right side of the blog.

Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

If you enjoy the blog, you can help keep it free to read and free from ads by supporting ExhibiTricks through our PayPal "Tip Jar"

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Making Things Move with 507movements.com


In a fantastic "back to the future" moment, the fine folks at the 507movements.com website have created a wonderful resource for any maker, designer, or builder that makes things that move.

Basically, they've created a Web version of the classic technical reference Five Hundred and Seven Mechanical Movements by Henry T. Brown. (The original printed edition came out in 1868!)

As the title of both the original book and the website suggests, here are five hundred and seven drawings of mechanical movements -- from two simple gears meshing to a labyrinthine collection of intricate pulley arrangements.

The beauty of the website is that they are now animating each of the 507 drawings so you can see the mechanisms in action!

Definitely worth a look (and worth bookmarking for future reference!) so click on over to the 507movements.com website to see the entire collection!





Don't miss out on any ExhibiTricks posts! It's easy to get updates via email or your favorite news reader. Just click the "Sign up for Free ExhibiTricks Blog Updates" link on the upper right side of the blog.

Paul Orselli writes the posts on ExhibiTricks. Paul likes to combine interesting people, ideas, and materials to make exhibits (and entire museums!) with his company POW! (Paul Orselli Workshop, Inc.) Let's work on a project together!

If you enjoy the blog, you can help keep it free to read and free from ads by supporting ExhibiTricks through our PayPal "Tip Jar"