Saturday, December 7, 2019

Another Ode to a Small Lump of Green Putty

I found another use for poster putty that I'm sure wasn't originally intended. I was working on a drawing that used gear in gear in ring and involved moving the gears in opposite directions when the simple pattern completed. Plus I was using a specific sequence of colors repeated in different patterns.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Strange Attraction

Recently Aaron wrote in the Wild Gears blog about a new technique pioneered by u/HomegrownTomato from the Spirograph subreddit that Aaron called "Center Secured". I won't go into the technique in this post because it's quite complicated and just a contributing factor to what I'm writing about here. Plus, Aaron covered it rather thoroughly in his blog.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Ode to a Small Lump of Green Putty...

Well, greenish-blue, actually. This may seem a somewhat odd post, but I want to talk briefly about putty. Poster putty. The stuff many of us use to hold our rings to the page while we spin gears around them.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Pencils, Part Three

Today we're moving upscale. The Rotring 600. Of all the mechanical pencils I've ever used, this is my favorite. Not that the others I've used and written about in this series are bad. They aren't. You mostly get what you pay for and seeing as how the others are much cheaper, well... You get what you pay for. 


Friday, March 8, 2019

Pencils, Part Two

Next up in the review of technical pencils suitable for use with Wild Gears is the Pentel GraphGear 500. This is a step up from the P20x series. It has a metal barrel near the tip that is knurled to provide a better grip. The weight of this barrel shifts the balance point of the pencil to be closer to the tip. 

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Compound Patterns, Part 1

I want to talk today about patterns, specifically about some of the oddities. For simple patterns, those created with a gear inside a ring, the formula for determining the number of loops that will result is well known (LCM(RingTeeth,GearTeeth)/GearTeeth) and with a little experience it's usually not difficult to have some idea of what the pattern will look like before you begin. There are usually not any big surprises with simple patterns. 

Friday, February 15, 2019

To mark or not to mark --

...that is the question. Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer the confusion and disorientation of unlabeled pen holes, or to take marker against a sea of invisibilities and by labeling, end them. 

Friday, February 8, 2019

Pencils, Part One

We've covered pencil leads and using pencils in various ways but not much has been said so far about the pencils themselves. This topic will cover multiple posts, not sure yet exactly how many. Today I'll cover some basics and then mention a couple cheaper pencils that might be a good place to start.  

The most basic characteristics you need for use with Wild Gears is that the pencil hold the lead securely and that it have a straight tip that will ride along the edge of the holes in the gears. From what I've seen most modern mechanical pencils have both these characteristics. I've seen some older mechanical pencils that had a more conical tip that would not work very well with Wild Gears. Avoid that and you're probably okay. 

Monday, February 4, 2019

A Tale of Two Gradients

Today I filled a gap in my 0.5mm pencil collection so I took the set out for a spin. Literally. 

I was just playing around with light to dark gradients and came up with this.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Can you have too many colors?

We'll get back to talking pencils in due course but I'd like to bring a bit of color into the mix. About a year ago I took a chance on a set of color pens I'd never heard of before. "100 Unique Fineliners" by Shuttle Art. Unfortunately, real life has kept me from using them until very recently, but I've finally had a chance to take some of them out for a test drive.