The Make A Sketch features an Arduino-based controller and a Processing application that work together to function like an Etch A Sketch, with the two knobs controlling a point on the screen. There are also two buttons on the controller. The red button saves your drawing, uploads it to sketch.rasterweb.net, and the clears the screen. The black button just clears the screen without saving the drawing. (I may add functionality to this button in the future.)

Make A Sketch Controller

The enclosure for the Make A Sketch is a really nice looking clear acrylic material, and houses a Seeeduino (with a prototyping shield) and the wiring for the potentiometers and buttons. A USB cables comes out the side of the case and plugs into a computer.

The site at sketch.rasterweb.net is a Posterous web site, and the images are automatically posted by means of a cron job calling a Perl script that uses Net::Posterous to create a new post. (Sorry, Posterous shut down. See a few samples below.)

sketch-00711

sketch-00952

sketch-01000

sketch-01468

sketch-01729

The first public showing of this piece was at the Bay View Gallery Night on June 3rd, 2011. Visitors to the Milwaukee Makerspace were invited to get hands on with it, and create their own sketches. As the night proceeded, sketch.rasterweb.net filled up with images created by everyone willing to spin the knobs and push the red button.

Blog posts about this project:

Here’s a video about the Make A Sketch, including some time lapse footage of the people who used it at Gallery Night, and a collection of the drawings they created.

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