1. Put A Bird In It — Featured Maker, Maryanna Hoggatt

    Written by askrofquestions | September 29, 2014


    First, she shared the secret thoughts of bartenders with her hilarious two-volume-comic Adult Babysitting. Then, she created a jaw-dropping illustrated series about “the internal struggle to bring ideas and dreams to life against our most powerful enemies: Fear and Doubt.” (We know, right?!) THEN, as if to taunt us with her genius, she taught herself to sculpt, and blew Portland’s mind with some of the most gorgeous and soul-wrenching collections created. Now, beloved Portland illustrator gone sculptor, Maryanna Hoggatt brings her Animal Battle to Put A Bird In It, and boy are we excited.

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    All Photos Courtesy of Maryanna Hoggatt 

    LND: Tell us about how you ended up building your first birdhouse for WeMake.

    MH: I was at WeMake last year, and I had a lot of artist friends who were participating — there was such a great variety of results! Last year, I wasn’t sculpting, and this year I am, so it totally makes more sense for me to participate this time around. Last year, I made a silkscreen poster of one of my Animal Battle houses— I started playing around with the environments that they were going to inhabit, and that was the first one I did. Now, I can flex my sculpting muscle, and it’s for such a good cause.

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    LND: Can you tell us more about your process? How do you do this?

    MH: Well, it’s very rich in fantasy, and there’s a really strong narrative in this world that is taking place. All the animals are named and have roles and purpose in this world. What I normally do for the process, is start with a drawing that I’ll turn into a sculpture. And then, I color the drawing, and measure it out. And I just start sculpting and I make sure that everything matches those dimensions as I go along. 

    LND: How long does it take?

    MH: All my sculptures usually take about two weeks.

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    LND: So the sculptures are to scale for your drawings?

    MH: Yes. Everything I sculpt is to scale. I thought about making this birdhouse bigger, but then, I decided not to. …Birds are small. I don’t know what’s going to happen to it after Design Week, but I’d like to make sure it’s at least functional, like, there’s even an actual birdbath in here. It’s funny how this project came along, and I already had an idea that I painted months ago, so it only seemed natural for me to run with that I idea.

    LND: Is there anything different about the house that you’ve done?

    MHIt’s a very basic process, but if I don’t map it out, then there could be some very big mistakes in the foundation of it. I hadn’t built a structure before, so I expected that this was going to be new and interesting. This was a big experiment for me. I’ve been watching some Youtube tutorials and nerdy dollhouse tutorials, and on building model train towns— educating myself. Oh, and there are lights incorporated in it! [Click here to see them in action]

    LND: So, you have this story. Can you tell me more about where it came from? 

    MH: This is the furthest I’ve taken it. I don’t really go so far when I’m doing 3D work; it sort of just lives in my head. I guess, that’s working towards someday, maybe, an actual storybook, and I’m playing with it.

    LND: We should be so lucky.

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    #wemake #maryannahoggatt #putabirdinit #animalbattle

    10 notes


  2. Put A Bird In It – Featured Maker, Ezra Cimino-Hurt of Case of Bass

    Written by cre8tivegirl | September 24, 2014


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    Ezra Cimino-Hurt is a character, in a good way. He’s got a fantastical way of thinking that helped him envision Case of Bass. Case of Base is today’s boombox for those with a design sensibility who appreciate the handmade. These portable music sound systems are locally made from repurposed materials and mostly vintage suitcases. They’re just cool. The lucky bird that get’s this perch is in for a treat.

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    YPE Where did the idea of Case of Bass come from?

    ECH Case of Bass was hatched from the need to have a boombox of my own.  I went to Best Buy and while the TDX model designed by Ziba design no less was the object of my attention, I saw flaws in it, and wanted to tweak my own design.  The ability to want to create something and just allow yourself to go down the rabbit hole and see where it takes you.  I didn’t set out to build what I do today, but my skill set and vision of what I enjoyed and what made me happy shaped the products I make today.  

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    YPE What’s the most elaborate one you’ve made?

    ECH I had the opportunity to work with Lindsay Joy Holmes of MapleXO this past spring to put together some pieces for National Go Skateboarding day on 7/21.  I had been envisioning a boombox made out of skateboards that was a feature you could skate.  Grind the handle as it played your music.  We started talking and her idea was that’s fun, but what about a ramp?  That was it and we ended up designing and building a Quarterpipe Boombox that was entirely veneered with skateboard maple end grain, complete with a horn deathbox and concrete pool coping.  The challenge wasn’t making something that looked good and sounded amazing, it was doing that and building the art to withstand the abuse of thousands of skateboarders hitting it over and over.  We did and it did.  It’s rad.

    YPE Have you made them for any celebrities?

    ECH  I have, but they aren’t the heroes in this story.  I find out later that celebrities ordered cases through my website and I deliver them their goods like everybody else.  I like to think that you become the celebrity of your block when you order a Case of Bass and drop it on your stoop on a nice summer day.  

    YPE Is there a dream Case of Bass you’d like to build?

    ECH  Oh boy, I just want to build them all perfect.  The challenge of the perfect assembly while working with imperfect materials and reusing old items is constantly throwing me curve balls.   I move from crazy idea to crazy idea, and once I flush it out I move on.  I have wanted some sort of interactive drum machine and smoke machine case to be built.  That’s my current unicorn.

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    YPE What about the Put A Bird In It Project has inspired you?

    ECH I had to realize that I was building it for myself, and sharing it with the show.  I started thinking about what would people like to see, then was overwhelmed with what I would like to see.  I am pretty weird, so you get something that might be on the weird side.  

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    YPE Why do you make?

    ECH If I don’t I would die.  I don’t have another setting and it’s how I fill everyday of my life.  Even if tied to a tree without the ability to physically put my ideas into reality I would imagine them.  They would probably include creative ways to get untied from a tree.

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    Be sure to check out Case of Bass on Instagram, he’s got some fun stuff there!

    #caseofbass #wemake #putabirdinit

    1 note


  3. Put A Bird In It – Featured Maker, Kinoko Evans

    Written by megangex | September 18, 2014


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    Her characters might be adorably playful, but Kinoko is a serious illustration powerhouse. She does way more than just put pen to paper. Kinoko teaches comics at PNCA and instructs at the IPRC. A constant stream of her work flows through GrasshutFloating World and comic shows around the city. Her Etsy is always on fire. This year is her first time contributing a house to Put a Bird In It, and we couldn’t be more excited to see what she brings to the party.

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    MG: What attracted you to Put a Bird In It?

    KE: The first year I volunteered. The party was really fun and I had a good time meeting the makers. I met a bunch of people from Laika and it was great to see their process. I mean, these are people that make miniature houses for a living. It’s their thing.

    MG: How is your birdhouse coming along?

    KE: I don’t know where it’s going yet. I drew a lot of different things. I like the idea of keeping it simple. But then people really go all out and I think people might be disappointed. I’m just sketching a lot of ideas but at this point I need to collect my thoughts and get into materials. Make sure it can happen.

    MG: Are you drawing inspiration from anywhere in particular?

    KE: Well, I started thinking, and came up with the character, a Female blue jay. The Character is for my process in what’s motivating me to work on it. The personality of it would be a city girl but someone who would still have a garden. I want to be progressive and a feminist but when I got into it she was like ‘No! I just want to have a house and kids.’ Birdhouses are for mamma birds and I guess their families, you know. She’s the decision maker. The dude in her life has to go along with her or he’s not going to hear the end of it for the rest of his life.

    She’s realistic in thinking about the right house so I guess she’s still progressive. She’s already thinking about what schools to send her kids, you know if she moves into northwest they’ll have access to the Montessori school. She’s got to make the right move.

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    MG: Your illustrations already incorporate a lot of houses. Is that part of the narrative of your characters?

    KE: I’ve always been a little obsessed with houses. I grew up in Philadelphia and when I left my parents house I rented out an attic and here was a garett window. You could look out and see a bunch of rooftops. When I saw the tops of houses I start thinking up stories. I thought about alley cats or robbers—not knowing to what’s really going on inside the houses and buildings. The outside perspective creates these narratives. 

    I also spent some time in Japan and got obsessed with rooftops. I wish I could get a rooftop-drawing grant. Japan has huge cities, really modern but then you have he suburbs with Japanese houses. Then there’s ton of ancient architecture in the middle of it. Integrates really well. 

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    MG: Do you like switching it up and doing some sculptural projects?

    KE: I have. But when you do something that isn’t your specialty you feel like an imposter. When you are in the arts people come up to you and friends are like ‘can you paint this boat’ just random stuff. 

    I’m doing a ceramics project and some mugs with my colleague. My friends recently asked me to make a wedding topper for them so I have been experimenting with that. I have the resources so I should be able to experiment. I should.

    #dwpdx #designweek #kinoko #putabirdinit

    8 notes


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