Maintaining the Makerspace momentum

April 20th, 2016 by Marie Category: Articles

Last year, an incredible amount was achieved to establish our makerspace and its integrative maker community. So where to now? What’s next for the Curtin Makers and how can we maintain the momentum?

One of our priorities for this year is to provide our community with a more accessible space to be used for collaboration and creation, and make our specialised materials and equipment obtainable to users.

To set this in motion, we have introduced MAKER meet-ups every Wednesday between 12.00pm and 2.00pm, Common Free Time (i.e. when no classes are scheduled). Each week, participants will engage in a maker activity, learn additional skills, and meet new people. We hope to utilise the expertise of our users to run some of these workshops, creating valuable experiences for them as well.

In conjunction with the MAKER meet-up sessions, we have also introduced Crafternoons each Thursday from 4.00pm. The idea behind a Crafternoon is simply a casual get-together of people where you can BYO craft project, share a craft skill, learn something new from a craft buddy, or have a play with some of the crafty materials and tools available in the makerspace. __

To get the word out about these opportunities and our makerspace in general, we literally took to the street to advertise! Handing out flyers for our makerspace events, we did not spare the extravaganza either… We used the occasion to display a wonderful example of a cross faculty maker project. With Park’d coming to the party for financial backing and promotion, we were able to bring two students together (from the areas of Art and Engineering) to create a collaborative work which was showcased as a place activation piece.

The creation was an interactive structure that produced a soundscape when various parts of the object were touched by passers-by. The interactive element involved using one of our Makey Makeys and a Raspberry Pi. This project highlighted the students’ talents as well as engaged the rest of the community with its interactive aspect. As our photo gallery shows, many people enjoyed observing, touching and investigating how the ‘wall’ worked. It is our hope that this activity will have encouraged future cross-faculty partnerships and an interest in ‘making’ in general.

Curtin would like to pay respect to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members of our community by acknowledging the traditional owners of the land on which the Perth campus is located, the Whadjuk people of the Nyungar Nation; and on our Kalgoorlie campus, the Wongutha people of the North-Eastern Goldfields.