Tag Archives: mirror

Project 1 Pandora: Final “Mirror”

Sticking my hand into the mystical pandora box, the magical (or not so…) word I received was mirror. My struggles through this project (i.e. the process) may be viewed here. After several weeks of struggling as slave to the foam, I tried to come up with a model that could include everything in one – be intricate in design, be a mix of other words from the pandora box, be able to be seen from all angles, all while using rectilinear volumes of different forms YET still have everything be symmetrical/centred due to the nature of my word. However, after about 398712 attempts at creating models and realising that it is impossible to achieve all of the above due to the restrictions of my word, I decided to go simple with the final look of the model, but have it actually achieve more than it seems to.

The main objective that I wanted to achieve through ‘mirror’ was to have the model be symmetrical from all its sides, since mirror indicates a reflection of the other.

Here are the pictures of my final model. I named it TARS, as it resembles the last standing robot from the movie Interstellar whom I grew quite attached to by the end of the 3-hour-long movie. Just like how attached I am to my model after finally completing it upon weeks of experimenting.

The real TARS:











*Photos may not be 100% accurate to life
*Provided are the lines of symmetry to avoid overlap in the 2D sketch analysis





As mentioned, my main focus was to have the model be symmetrical from all its sides, or rather from as most sides as possible. As seen, with the use of the squared SD and the rotating D, the model is not only symmetrical from the front, back, left and right, but also from diagonal angles. That makes it already symmetrical from 8 sides with all blocks being visible.

When viewed from the top or bottom, I still focused on the property that the model remains symmetrical despite the SO being hidden from sight.

Possible improvements:

To enhance the idea of levitation by the SO, I could have used acrylic rods instead of chopsticks so that the transparency will allow a sense of floating of the dominant.




  1. A literal mirror 

Given the word, I thought it would only be fitting if the final product turned out to be a literal mirror as well. A mirror that is mirrored from all views. Mirror-ception.

I decided to cover the rotatable dominant in reflective mirror paper to represent a real mirror and use wood for the subdominant base so that the model would be able to be stable and balance well. The wood also serves as an aesthetic design, hence the use of wooden chopsticks to match the aesthetic.

  • Vanity Mirror

As such, the final model represents a rotatable mirror that can be placed on one’s vanity.
Here’s where things get more exciting with the mirror:

  • Life-size Circus Mirror Installation

If magnified to life size, the model can also serve as a life-size art installation with circus mirrors, just for people’s entertainment.

i.e. Replacing the normal reflective surface with these mirrors:


  • Mirror-ception Installation

If two installations are placed opposite each other, they reflect each other thus creating a mirror-ception installation, much like the mirror scene from Inception. This could be placed in an art exhibition.

Four of these installations can also be placed in the shape of a box so that it becomes a room that people can possibly enter in an art museum. It would be even better if every mirror had a different type of circus mirror, so the reflections reflect different reflections!

Here’s my tacky attempt at trying to photoshop it into a life size exhibition, I hope you get the idea:

To apply the rotating functionality, a full MAZE can be made with these life size models where people will have to rotate the mirrors to find their way out.


2. Futuristic Waiter

Inspired by space robot TARS who assisted the NASA team in their journey to outer-space, I figured that my model could become a futuristic robot waiter/waitress at food places when turned upside down.

The wooden block could act as the head, while the reflective surface here represents a digital screen where customers can see the menu and make their orders on.

Since it’s the future, the robot could be levitating around the place without the need for wheels. Furthermore, if the wooden chopsticks are replaced with a transparent material, the head could be levitating as well and would fit the futuristic aspect of this idea. Or… maybe the head will actually be able to levitate in the future.


3) Fondue Fountain

When upside down, the rotating function could also help serve the model as a rotating fondue fountain. I imagine that the falling chocolate will be aesthetically swirling in rounds due to the flat surface of the rotating dominant.


Project 1 Pandora: The Process “Mirror”

The final model/post for this project can be viewed here.

THE PROCESS (i.e. failures before the success)

Sticking my hand into the pandora box, the magical word that I received was…


So here are my attempts at creating 3D sketch models out of boxes of different shapes and sizes to showcase the word, as well as my 2D sketch analyses on them.
*Measurements may not be accurate due to photo angles


















The idea that I had was just to make the entire model be symmetrical while it has some interesting design to it. Hence, everything was made centralised, and even the negative voids are mirrored. Although it’s not the point, I also took into consideration the general colours of the boxes (white/orange), and made them mirror as well. Hence, all the whites mirror the whites, and the two orange sides mirror each other as well.

I intended for the lowest block to be the dominant, the middle to be the subordinate and the top to be the subdominant. However, after taking a closer look at the model… I guess my plan didn’t work out so well.

The supposed dominant and subdominant are too similar in height, so when the model is viewed from the side, it is unclear as to which box is actually the dominant. Seeing this, I replaced the supposed subordinate with a longer, thin strip of foam.

















However, the model is also only symmetrical from 4 sides (as pictures provided), but should the model be toppled over, it is no longer symmetrical. If viewed from the bottom, only the biggest box would be able to be seen and if viewed from the top, the smallest box in the centre cannot be seen.

From this, I would like to keep in mind that I can work towards making a model that will showcase the word ‘Mirror’ from all sides, although that would be very difficult as I am trying to make things symmetrical and interesting at the same time (i.e. not just putting everything in the centre on top of one another) with boxes of different shapes and sizes…).

Furthermore, although the blue strip of foam is actually two thirds of the top box when taken apart, they look too similar in length when put together. Hence, I took the model apart again to make one with an obvious subordinate.




This was the final model I had, saved as a back-up plan should I be unable to come up with something more interesting. I was planning to use a clear box for the dominant box so that the model will be fully visible from the bottom as well.



After cracking my brain for hours on hours, trying to think of a different way to represent ‘mirror’ other than the use of symmetry, I decided to google for other meanings of mirror. I then got the idea of ‘parallel’ and ‘reflection’.

In this model, I intended for the big black box to be the dominant and the base (not a very smart idea, but my brain was really dry on fuel), the blue tissue box to be the subdominant, and the two little boxes on the sides to be subordinates.

The idea was that the 3 boxes standing on the base are all parallel to one another hence mirrored, and the two subordinates are also reflections of each other across the subdominant.

When flipped to the side, one side also mirrors the other side due to the presence of two subordinates mirroring each other. If there was only one subordinate, one side would only be able to see the black box and the tissue box. Furthermore, the subdominant box also acts as a larger reflection of the subordinate.

(P.S. something I found quite funny was the fact that the lady on the raisin box looks like she’s looking into a mirror, which is the shape that is formed by the tissue box hole. *note that the lady exists on both sides of the box*)

I scrapped this idea because it was just too un-interesting.



For this attempt, I focused on having the model be symmetrical from most angles WHILE looking intricate and not just have boxes stacked on top of one another. Hence, I played around with wedging and piercing.

However, as easily observed, there is NO subordinate present in this model because the thinnest rectilinear volume was also the longest. While the design is more intricate with the use of mirroring negative voids (that are not just shaped in rectangles), the intricacy gave no added value to the model in relation to the word ‘mirror’. Hence, this model was instantly a failure.

Through all these attempts, I noted down what I wanted to achieve for my final model:

  • Have obvious D, SD and SO from all angles
  • Placement of blocks/creations of negative voids should have reasoning
  • Don’t need to have a super complicated design