I try not to be the jealous type, but some cities allow motion on billboards. What I wouldn’t give to just make something spin like this giant pinwheel by AJ Ferrara at Lamar. What’s even more impressive is that the whole sculpture and mechanism was built in-house by AJ and his operations crew.
What started as a simple idea turned into a pitch for a client that wanted a photo of a girl with wind in her hair and lots of copy. It was just another boring billboard for a Throat & Nose Clinic. When the idea of using a pinwheel on the board came to me, I had no idea we would be doing it in 3D. Once the client bit on the idea, I knew it would be a cool project. I dismantled a $2 pinwheel and realized it was very simple and could be constructed within a small budget.
Then I started to research what material would be flexible enough to fold and not break. I found a local supplier of PVC sheets and figured it would work great. I scanned the mini pinwheel pattern and projected it on to the PVC SHEET and just cut it out. The rest of the parts came from stuff laying around the back shop. Literally. It’s held together with round pieces of wood that came from a spool of wire. These were used to hold the pinwheel blades together to get the look we wanted. The rotating mechanism in the back comes from an old broken shop fan.
So that was how we created a GIANT 8′ WIND-DRIVEN PINWHEEL.