Monday, March 25, 2013

Run, Rabbit Run (and Lovecraftian snacks)

In the interest of silly, I decided to enter the RAM's Fourth Annual International PEEPS® Competition this year. I'd attended the showing last year and it looked like fun. It seems to also be garnering a bit of truly international attention too (like this piece on the BBC's travel blog), so why not?

 "Tom" Dave Watkins' adult division winner from 2012 

"Peeps Porridgeby Patricia Roberson, winner of The Coveted 2012 PEEPles Choice Award

The decision to enter was also somewhat aided by the fact that I had discovered two packages of green bunny peeps from LAST YEAR in my pantry. I'd stashed them behind the wine bottles, so I wouldn't be tempted to eat them...then promptly forgot them.  I'd intended to use them to make Cthulhu peeps, but they were quite stale by the time I found them. Perfect for some other odd repurposing, though.

Since a bit demented seems to work at this event, I'd initially thought about getting more Peeps that were soft enough to alter this way and do a carbohydrate tribute to The Old Ones. Instead, I decided to go in another geeky direction and play with a steamish sugar/calories=energy concept. Also: I wanted an excuse to use the title, "Run, Rabbit Run". Whenever one has the opportunity to make a Pink Floyd reference, I think that it is imperative that one should seize it.

Some of my original doodles for the project were a bit...dark, though. They just had too much of a Geiger-y or animal experimentation vibe, so I had to tone it down a bit. Since this was going to displayed in kid-friendly space, I figured there was a limit on the creepy mecha-mallow factor.

This was what I ended up with:

As a personal challenge, I tried to make this as inexpensively and use repurposed parts as much as possible.

Materials used:

-Recycled cookie tin ($0.49 from Goodwill...faux rusted and painted)
-Ossified marshmallow Peep (Spray painted)
-Salvaged copier gears (Snagged a while back from a surplus store...painted)
-Salvaged computer fan (Snagged a while back from a surplus store...painted)
-Wire fencing mesh (Roll end scrap from a hardware store. I think I paid less than a buck for about 4 square feet)
-Brass eyelets (Deadstock from a shoe factory that I had found at a flea market. I paid a dollar for a pound+ corroded box of them)
-Aluminum strip from a soda can (Faux rusted with iron paint, salt, and bleach)
-Metal stampings that I had on hand and a few "real" gears
-Vintage vacuum tubes (Flea market...maybe $0.50 each)
-Scrap wire (On hand)
-LEDs (Snagged a while back from a surplus store. I think they were something like $0.79 for a package of 4. Colored with Sharpie marker to make them red and amber)
-Copper bezel with a broken bail
-Salvaged switch (Snagged a while back from a surplus store)
-Resin and glue
-Paper and cardboard (On hand, cardboard from my recycling bin)
-Promotional keyboard wrist rest (Freebie from work, painted)
-Various hardware bits...screws, nails, washers, bolts (On hand)

Learning points:

-The fencing scrap was a fun material to work with. I expect that I'll use more of it in future projects. It cuts easily and maintains its shape nicely. The fan enclosure took me less than five minutes from measuring to completion.

-Fossilized marshmallows take spray paint well...but not liquid acrylic. I chipped the finish when putting in one of the eyelets, but since the Peep was already adhered to the base, I couldn't spray paint. I tried to touch it up with acrylic paint instead, but instead it started to melt. GAH!

-I'm still a clod with hot glue. *sigh* Just when my thumbprints were growing back.

RAM's Fourth Annual International PEEPS® Competition kicks off with the Meet the PEEPS® Artists Event: Artist Reception, Awards Ceremony and Media Preview
Thursday, March 28
5:30 - 7:30 pm
Awards Presentation at 6:00 pm

The exhibit runs from March 29 - April 14, 2013 during regular museum hours. If you're in the area, please stop on by. Personally, I'm really looking forward to seeing what creative projects everyone did with their Peeps.


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you! I already have an idea for next year (I tried to get my partner to do it this year, but video game weekends prevailed).