The wave's been caught

I successfully finished and “shipped” my booth, Catch the Wave!, at the inaugural OMSI Oregon Science Festival this past weekend.

I don’t have a good sense of how many people I interacted with over the course of the two days, but I would guess somewhere in the mid- to high-hundreds. There was very little downtime from 9:30-5:30 both days, and because my experiment stations were setup in an ordered way, I don’t think I could have handled any more people than I did.

Broadly, my personal goals for this project, aside from obviously making a compelling booth, were:

I hope to write up more soon about what I made, as well as the multi-month process leading up to it, but for the next few days at least, I’m taking a bit of a break — still with other projects I need to work on, though. I always have intentions of writing things up more, and this time I am taking them very seriously as a way to continue using this project in other contexts. I am trying to see the after part of the project as just as important as the making and showing parts.

Roughly, the work on this project involved:

I can only seem to do one of these types of projects every year or two, as they are mentally and, near the end, very physically exhausting. While I have detailed planning and concepting stages throughout, I always seem to be very deadline-driven when it comes to putting on the final touches to what becomes the eventual project. I’m going to spend some time reflecting on that, as I always do, and see what I can learn about myself and my process. I will say that this time only involved a few hours at the end of “wow, I’m desperate for this project to be over so I can get off this ride”, rather than days or weeks.

All of the toil to ship a physical thing that is used by the public is worth it, though, for moments like these.

Special thanks to Jessica for support, staffing help, and last-minute laminating, and to Sam and Jenni for stopping by and giving me a bit of a break.