Kinetic Beasts // Plover Bird

Prototype 1

This model was built based on the dipping motion of the plover bird. Whenever it picks up food from the ground or from between the crocodile’s teeth, the bird makes this tilting movement back and forth.

I reinterpreted this movement as an oscillation in this abstract model. The model would move back and forth like roly-poly toy.

The model consists of three different parts: base, stick, end. The base is the half circle you can see in photograph in the center. This base is half a circle to allow the model to rock back and forth. A weight (a coin in this case) is added to the middle of one the sides. I found that different weights (5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents) made the base rock back and forth in different speeds. The stick is the long pole in the center. The end is the two circles at either end of the stick. They are of equal weight and allows the stick to oscillate up and down on the base.


Prototype 2

This model was more focused on a realistic representation of the plover bird. In addition, it was taking into consideration of storing water in it and letting the water out as the bird oscillates back and forth. A paste that changes color when it is heated up was applied to the bird because both the plover bird and the crocodile is attracted to heat.

As shown in the sketch above, the bird was planned to be hollow in the center to allow water to be stored. When it attains a certain level, the water would pour out of a hole in the center of the bird’s head. The bottom of the bird is not hollow. Instead, it would have a hole in its center to allow the bird to oscillate back and forth like the idea in prototype 1.

It was also originally planned to attach a magnet on the bottom of the bird’s beak. This will allow the bird to ‘pluck’ and pick up metal particles or other magnets whenever it oscillates.

The problem with this, however, is that once one side of the birds gain weight as it picks up more metal particles, the bird will not oscillate as the weight will not be balanced on each side.



The final model is combination of prototype 1 and prototype 2. It take its main abstract form from prototype 1 but take the water storing and pouring function from prototype 2.

To see the final results and process check here and here.

Published by

Minjee Cheon

And that happened

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