25-1/4″ tall x 10″ base, hand-hammered aluminum, hand-set rivets. My original design.
My inspiration to make this rocket:
• I saw the announcement from Elon Musk (founder of SpaceX and Tesla) that SpaceX plans to send tourists on a rocket ride around *the moon* in the next couple of years! That’s crazy cool. Refreshingly audacious.
• That triggered a long-dormant, youthful excitement about the future — lighting up my mind with imaginings of spacecraft heading out to explore our solar system.
• I tried to imagine the “perfect” rocketship design…and a very specific vision came to mind. I did a quick pencil sketch of it…
• I scanned the sketch and refined the design in Inkscape (open source vector drawing application), and printed out trial patterns.
• My first experiment at rocket building was a fail… It was clunky, with inelegant overlapping metal sections.
• The next iteration, however, exceeded my expectations, bringing my inner vision of the “perfect spaceship” to life! The construction method (using butt joints between sections rather than overlapping) was far more exacting and time consuming to build, but the streamlined result was well worth it.
• On a personal level, the payoff was greater than the physical sculpture; it was cathartic to focus on a fun, optimistic vision of the future for a change! It elevated my overall outlook.
If you were to deconstruct this rocket sculpture, you’d find it’s made from over 60 individually hammer-formed aluminum pieces, into which I drilled 700+ holes, fastened together with ~350 rivets. Starting with my original design, I hand traced and hand cut each piece of metal, hammered them over various forms I made until they fit properly together, carefully drilled the holes, then hand riveted the pieces together. For the patina, I tried to evoke a scorched, re-entry look and feel. With high quality materials and workmanship, this rocket sculpture will last for many generations.
I envision it in modern homes, urban lofts, high tech environments, hipster offices, or retro / atomic style decor. It’s stable, sturdy, lightweight — easy to place on any table, mantel, shelf, desk, niche, or ledge.
I hope you like it as well as I do.