The Story of How MULTIPLANES Were Developed

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For the last couple of years, I’ve been developing a new product line called MULTIPLANES that I sell through VINYLSMACK; my side excursion. Originally most product I sold through VINYLSMACK were vinyl decals. I eventually started moving to paper made die-cut products like the set of Back to The Future Deloreans (pictured left). After exploring the possibility of mixing different materials on one product, I reached back to an old product idea I had created about 10 years ago that featured multilayer art that was spread across multiple frames just like they did with the early animation with the Multiplane cameras. My early attempts failed because I was using clear transparency sheets to layer the art. After a few layers, the art would get murky/cloudy and wasn’t clean so I eventually ditched the idea.

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Fast forward to 2016, I brought the idea back to life after I invested in a laser cutting machine. After the first proof of concept (shown above) and several prototypes, I was able to bring my original vision to life by creating three dimensional scenes out of paper, wood, acrylic, and full color printed elements (shown below).

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I also created a system where multiple frames quickly get inserted into a slotted base which makes setting up the product easy. It also let’s the user take part in “building” the product. Part of the fun is seeing a three dimensional scene come to life.

 

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Series 1. For the first release of the product, I wanted to have 5 products to choose from that were all related in some way. I ended up choosing the Paranormal/Cryptozoology genre for Series 1. I love the genre and tales that come from them. I often listen to podcasts like Mysteryous UniverseExpanded Perspectives, and The Gralien Report which not only feature these type of stories but present them in an engaging way.  I love the creepy tales about the Men in Black, Yeti, and Kraken so I started off with those. I also brought in my brother to work on the UFO scene called “TAKEN.” I also created a fictional character called the Oddity which features a “freak show” type of character that sits in a traveling carriage that gets hauled by a flying bird. For that one, I just let my imagination run wild.

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The goal for every MULTIPLANE early in the development and going forward is for there to be this feeling like your looking into a scene that is unfolding. I wanted them to feel very alive and packed with motion, emotion, drama, intensity, and life. Every MULTIPLANE also has a central character or object that pulls viewer in visually. You really have to see one of them in person to appreciate the depth and level of detail that each one has. I also designed them to be perfect for keeping on your desk or a shelf so they don’t take up too much space.

MULTIPLANES Series 1, World of Mystery,” has been out for over a year now and I’m now starting to design a 2nd series that explores the lofty heights that transportation reached before the modern era. From electric trains that sprawled early Los Angeles, to taking command of the skies, Series 2 showcases mankind’s vision for the future of transportation.

Buy one today at: vinylsmack.com

The VINYLSMACK Haunted Mansion Framed Diorama

The next Multiplanes Gallery piece is finally complete. One year and several prototypes later, the final Haunted Mansion now lives!!! It was a labor of love designing this. When I use to go on the ride as a kid, I remember almost pissing my pants in the elevator area out of fear. My dad was the only one that made me feel safe enough to brave the entire thing. Anyways TMI. This bad boy is hand built by yours truly and features over 125 separate pieces and includes remote controlled LED lighting in a 16x20 frame. The Haunted Mansion is not currently available for sale online. We only sell the large gallery pieces at conventions. If you're interested in purchasing one and live somewhat local to Southern California, please shoot us an email.

This is a short preview of the process of building our Haunted Mansion Model.

Mr. Rogers, The Patron Saint of Make Believe

Introducing "The Patron Saint of Make Believe." This one was a long labor of love and a VINYLSMACK ode to the man that sparked the imagination of generations. If Mr. Rogers was ever elevated to sainthood, I'm sure he'd be the Patron Saint of Make Believe. He was a creative genius in his own right; playing many parts bringing the puppets to life. Here's to King Friday the XIII! These 13"x19" fine art prints are now available in the shop.

Peeling back the years. Designing the Past

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Digital explorations for the next MULTIPLANES means erasing about 90% of Los Angeles back to 1914. What a time to be alive! Transportation, architecture, and fashion was still gripped by late Victorian elements. Arts and crafts, and deco was also shaping modern design. What I like best about those time though were scenes like this; especially in the area I lived which use to have sprawling acres of citrus groves. If you look hard enough, you can still find traces of the past. Multiplanes Series 2 will explore this past with it’s focus on transportation. First up will be the Pacific Electric Railway. Stay posted.

MULTIPLANES Series 2 - Sneak Peak - The Pacific Electric

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Here’s a sneak peak of MULTIPLANES Series 2....currently unnamed! We’re going back 100 years to view the grand heights of transportation and the various paths it took. Series 2 showcases mankind’s vision for the future of transportation. The Pacific Electric trains dominated public transportation in Los Angeles for the first half of the 20th century and the air was still clean! This will be first off in Series 2 with more exciting products slated for release at Designercon this coming November 16-18, 2018 at the Anaheim Convention Center! Also, don’t forget to check out Series 1 which is now available for purchase.

LA Weekly Featured VINYLSMACK at the Long Beach Comic Expo!

We got featured in LA Weekly from our time at the Long Beach Comic Expo this past February! Thanks to everyone that stopped by and picked up some VINYLSMACK goods. We love that you share your excitement for the art we make!! This year we’ll be releasing even more wicked cool stuff.

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Designercon 2017 - VINYLSMACK HIGHLIGHT

I’ve had some time to rest and recoup from DesignerCon 2017! Here’s the recap. Thanks again to all of you that stopped into our packed booth and took something home! Also thanks for posting and sharing those photos and videos on IG! Next year has so much more new releases planned. Please like, follow and share!

#vinylsmack #multiplanes #art #design #illustration#papercraft #diorama #designercon #dcon #pasadena #gallery #maker #paranormal #mystery #instagood #love #follow

Design Process for The Yeti - MULTIPLANES

Behind the scenes of my first Multiplanes, The Yeti. Developed Q1 2016. Here are some photos and thoughts of the process I go through while designing in general; also specifically for the Yeti. 


PROTOTYPE 1: When designing, my first idea is often garbage. The point is to get the idea out into the physical world. Refinement comes much later.
 

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PROOF OF CONCEPT: Here’s where I make a super crude first pass on the Yeti Multiplane. This is where I hold the product and take in this concept and let it speak to me. If it works on a very basic conceptual level, I go forward with it and devote hours to fleshing out as many revisions on the Yeti until it grabs me on some emotional level.
 

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FINAL YETI DESIGN: Once the main character is strong enough to add sufficient drama to the scene, I go in and spend lots of time developing the scene. I also spend time at shops obsessing over paper, colors and other materials that can add to the scene. 
 

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YETI FLAT ART: In this step, I proceed to further refine and cut out art from my vector designs. Anything can change at this point but it’s pretty close to finished.
 

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FINISHED PRODUCT: Once the final version is set I create and assemble a finished product and look it over for a few days to see how I feel about it. If I’m still thrilled in the end, it goes to final production and into your hands!!! With the Yeti, I also added a frosted acrylic layer to simulate snow, real wood for the foreground trees and added an LED lighting system to pull it all together. Also speaking on the final scene, I felt it was just right when I saw those poor hikers off in the distance. They’re completely unaware that either they’re about to be disemboweled or sent off into the ether. Who knows. 😱
For all of you that have been asking, MULTIPLANES will be available online at vinylsmack.com for the first time in December!!!

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