A very Famous Elephant by Charles and Ray Eames

You are going to make a 3D Animal which is based upon the work of two very influential furniture designers of the 20th Century, Charles and Ray Eames.
They were a married American couple who shared an interest in design.

They found time to experiment with Plywood finding ways to shape and form it.

Charles and Ray Eames developed a toy elephant made of plywood in 1945; however, this piece never went into production. One prototype was shown at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1946 and still survives in the Eames family archives today.
Charles and Ray Eames were fascinated by elephants. Many images of these gentle giants are found in Charles' photographic documentation of Indian culture and the circus world. The Eames Elephant was designed as a toy for children, but also as a striking sculptural object that makes a statement in any environment with its vigorous curves and delightful character.

What else can you find out about the Furniture Designs of Charles and Ray Eames?

The Elephant project

In this project, you will produce a 3 Dimensional animal form out of Aluminum.

You are going to experiment with making a range of card nets that develop to form a 3D animal shape; card models.

The final product will be made from 0.9 mm thick Aluminium.

0.9mm Aluminum can be cut using tin snips.

One arm of the Tin Snips is secured in the jaws of the metal vice for ease of operation.

Using an extension bar on the handle of the snips will increase the force applied to shear the metal.

You will use a variety of files and abrasive paper to ensure a smooth edge all around your animal shape.

Aluminium can be cold formed to shape around a wooden former.

You will use a 4mm x 8mm rivet to join the head to the body of the animal.

This will allow the Head to pivot around the rivet point.

This project will help to develop your model making, marking out, measurement, metal cutting, edge finishing, drilling and riveting skills