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Heavy metal, science fiction, and embroidery come together seamlessly in Tharsis Sleeps, a new animated music video by Throne. Each frame of this epic animated depiction of the band being sent into space to detonate a nuclear bomb on Mars was individually machine embroidered onto fabric.

The original inspiration was metal band patches. I was making band patches on a sewing machine that could embroider with one needle. I remembered from when I was seven or eight years old, I’d seen an embroidery machine at a boat show and that always stuck in my mind. It mesmerised me and looked crazy, how it could embroider anything. When I was doing the band patches, I realised it was totally animate-able – I could embroider it frame by frame and it would look mental.

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Director of the video and singer for Throne Nicos Livesey explained that he didn’t plan to make the project as elaborate as it ended up being, but having access to electronic embroidery equipment changed his mind.

Originally it was going to be in black and white and only 90 seconds long, and it was going to be a completely abstract psychedelic visual piece. When I started looking for a more advanced machine, I spoke to Brother Machinery which lent us three fully industrial embroidery machines which can do up to ten colours.

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Despite having the equipment to make incredible embroidered animations, it was still a struggle for Livesey to make but, just like almost all DIY projects, totally worth it in the end.

In the beginning, nothing was going right. I was like, ‘This is impossible.’ You’ve got to use this software to digitise the images into embroidery so the machinese can read the image, but you’d convert it to stitch format and parts of the image would disappear randomly. I couldn’t really give up though, I was too far into it! You just have to fight through.

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[via Where's Me Jumper?]

Andrew Salomone

Artist, writer, and teacher who makes work about popular culture, technology, and traditional craft processes.

http://www.andrewsalomone.com


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