I started this personal project, of sorts, back in August. I finished it today. I'm so glad I finished it today. I'm not horrible about starting things and not finishing them, but sometimes that creeps in. Especially if it's just something for fun...you know, like a personal project.
Last summer, I worked a brief, full-time stint at Upward Sports in Spartanburg, SC. Upward has an affinity toward, well, sports...makes sense, huh? So, when the annual cornhole tournament rolls around in June, it sends quite the buzz through the office and everyone is completely stoked. I had never played in the cornhole tourney because it was only for full-time employees. Not contract workers. Well, my status at this brief point in time was "full-time employee", so I was IN this year. I never really played cornhole much. I thought it was fun, but I was pretty horrible at it.
So, me and my buddy, Erin, worked on our "game" during most every break and sometimes lunch. It was such a great way to enjoy the sun and blow off a little steam after sitting in Cubical-Land for eight hours a day. And after a while, we began getting halfway decent at it and started talking about how easy (and possibly fun) it could be to make our own boards.
Erin and her hubs, Phillip, make all sorts of things. Carla and her hubs, Matt, talk about making things, but never execute the plan because, well, they know that their time and energy would most likely be better spent by just purchasing said thing. Being "handy" is not a specialty in the Carter household. But, since Erin and Phillip are handy, we were thrilled to partner up and at least fund the project and offer moral support... and maybe even pick up a drill. So, after an evening spent in the Patton basement, a couple of Domino's pizzas, some hard labor by Phillip, some spectating/half-assistance by Matt, 100% spectating from Erin and I...we had a set of cornhole boards! (Thank you, Phillip!) :-)
With two bare boards calling out for some color, I began brainstorming about what I could possibly put on them. This took a while, so in the meantime, Erin crafted some cornbags...overnight. Yeah, overnight. How she does this, I'll never know, but I greatly admire her tenacity for completing tasks. She showed up at work the next morning with four gray bags and four teal bags...filled with the perfect amount of corn, all sewed up, and ready for play. (At this point, Phillip had already made another set of boards for the Patton household...ahhhhhmazing.)
Now back to brainstorming...
If you've known Matt and I for any amount of time, you know that we have quite an affinity toward any-and-everything Mexican...culture, colors, food, people, food, tradition, food. (We had tacos and enchiladas for our rehearsal dinner.) Yes, it's true love. So, the brainstorming ended when this one phrase from a favorite flick came to mind..."Get that corn outta my face!"
Voila! This is it!
Now, stop reading this right now if you haven't seen Nacho Libre and GO. WATCH. IT. You can thank me later.
I started by laying the design out in Illustrator and figuring out the dimensions and how everything would position on the boards. I'm not an illustrator, so I found the best Nacho Libre mask image I could find, laid it on the artboard, and drew a vector image over it on a different layer (aka digital manual tracing..haha). I did the same with the corn. And then I just did a sunburst with some stars for the background. The next step was to print it out and then use the ol' trusty projector to get a good outline going on the boards. This would be simple if I had a decent projector, but it's pretty horrible, so I'll spare you all of the grunting and groaning I did for the next several hours as I tried to get a pencil outline for some basic framework. I didn't take a picture of this step of the process. I guess because I didn't want to remember it. Ha!
Here's a progression of how I laid down the mask board. At this point, I already finished the board with the "corn-on-a-stick". I never think to take progress photos until the process is over, so I was glad I at least remembered to start taking them at this point. In the first image, you can see my vector image propped up top. And you'll also see later that I didn't stick with my original plan. Ha!
So at this point, the fun painting part was over.
The next step was to take them over to my dad's shop and get some poly coats on them. Dad's quite the master with a spray can, so he helped me get it coated up real nice. (He has a pretty sweet project going on himself...see it back there?)
Painting the sides. Not real exciting.
And now for the finishing touch...the ultimate Nacho-touch. What would Nacho cornhole boards be without a little touch of gold tassle fringe?? Right. My thoughts exactly.
Up to this point (except for the fringe photo), I had just snapped photos with my phone. So I really wanted Matt to shoot some with his mad skillz. Our grass is pretty janky and not yet green, so after trying to shoot them there and not having good results, we loaded up early the next morning and headed up to our church yard for some pretty grass back-droppage. We got there super early to catch the "magic hour". It was great. Cold, but great. I love the images he captured. Thank you, Matty.
Ironically, the bags Erin made (before Nacho was even thought of), ended up being the perfect colors. The chicken egg basket also ended up being the perfect container for the bags.
I'm in love with these colors.
My first cornhole modeling gig.
So, they're done and I couldn't be happier with them.
"Get that corn outta my face!"