Meet the Maker: Jeff Sonsken of Paint the Trail

Ever find yourself bored while running? Tired of what you see when out on the bike? Then take your trek over to Paint the Trail, located right on the Wekiva Trail in Seminole County!

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Photo courtesy of paintthetrail.wordpress.com

Paint the Trail is a public art installation that recycles castaway materials, such as paint and wood, to create hand-painted panels that are mounted alongside the Wekiva Trail. This unexpected source of art has become an eye catching addition for travelers on the trail since 2011. Different pieces of the mural feature notable cultural icons, act as public tributes, and show support for causes and the community.

Creator Jeff Sonsken started the mural by hanging a couple of his paintings up on the fence behind his parents’ house. With the paintings facing the Wekiva Trail, Sonsken expected to be told to take them down. What this Maker did not expect was a genuine positive response from those passing by. The response to these original paintings later fueled the creation of Paint the Trail, and dozens more paintings over the next few years. While many of the panels are original creations by Sonksen, members of the community have also started to contribute to the effort. In May 2014, a GoFundMe was started to fund Paint The Trail as a future non-profit organization, with the plan to take the artistic endeavor beyond Seminole County. Another goal? Creating the world’s longest mural- only 4 ½ miles to go.

Remember to check out these fence masterpieces and meet Maker Jeff Sonsken on Sept. 13 and Sept. 14 at Maker Faire Orlando!

Meet the Maker: RunPee App, Dan Florio

runpeeNo need to think twice about buying a large soda before the movie starts anymore – the RunPee app has you covered!

The RunPee app provides you with carefully selected Peetimes for a movie. The Peetimes are made up of 3-5 minutes of the best time to take a bathroom break without missing any major scenes. The app will also fill you in on what you missed while you were gone. The best part is that you don’t have to keep checking your phone to see when the next Peetime is. All you have to do is set a timer when the movie begins and it’ll vibrate before each time it’s safe to make a run for it.

The creator behind the app is Dan Florio. Dan got the idea after sitting through an awfully long three hour movie with his wife. After playing around with the idea for a few hours, he developed the app, and overtime it became a huge hit. Through the hard work of the RunPee team of six, the app has received an enormous amount of media coverage and celebrity recognition including praise from Hugh Jackman.

Don’t miss out on meeting the Maker behind this clever app at Maker Faire Orlando Sept. 13 and Sept. 14!

Meet the Maker: E-Nable

Photo courtesy of enablingthefuture.org

Photo courtesy of enablingthefuture.org

Ever heard of prosthetics that can be printed from the comfort of your own home?

E-Nable brings us just that. With a team of more than 800 volunteers, E-Nable gives people in need another chance at life with an affordable prosthetic hand that can be 3D printed. For less than $50, anyone from anywhere can create and download a device.

From engineers to tinkerers to occupational therapists and more, E-Nable uses an array of expertise to “lend a hand” to the community. Their current designs have been approved by the FDA for testing through Creighton University, as they work to create and improve affordable custom prosthetics. The E-Nable team does anything from building a complete hand, to helping people print parts of the hand or just simply guiding them through the process of building it themselves.

Meet members of the E-Nable team and see their 3D printed prosthetics in action at Maker Faire Orlando on Sept. 13 and Sept. 14!

Meet the Maker: TROBO, Jeremy Scheinberg & Chris Harden

Photo credit: www.herecomestrobo.com

Photo credit: www.herecomestrobo.com

A smart, cuddly robot that talks? I don’t think it gets better than this.

Meet TROBO. TROBO is a plush companion that takes kids on learning adventures and gets them excited about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM). With an interactive storytelling app, TROBO reads out loud and engages with children ages 2-7 through an iPad or Android tablet. By using the child’s name and picture, the app and robot personalize the story for the child, making them feel like they’re really part of the learning magic.

The Maker’s behind this product are Jeremy Scheinberg and Chris Harden. Too many encounters with too many useless toys led these professionals to develop a brainy companion for children. Last November, TROBO took home the silver in the Orlando Startup Weekend competition.

Come check out TROBO in action and meet the Makers at Maker Faire Orlando Sept. 13 and Sept. 14!

Meet the Maker: Two Glassy Broads

Is your glass half empty or half full? Well, for these gals, it’s neither – it’s shattered!

Two Glassy Broads is a team of three women who create one-of-a-kind glass items that are fun and functional. Some of their original designs include wind chimes, Christmas ornaments, small plates and decorations. Most of their creations are made from recycled glass, but they also use fusing glass.

In 2008, this Central-Florida based shop formed to create vibrant art to brighten people’s homes. Through hand cutting, painting and heating, these pieces are created with precision and delicacy.

Come see how Two Glassy Broads have turned shattered glass into art at Maker Faire Orlando on September 13 & 14 at Orlando Science Center!

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Photo credit: www.etsy.com/shop/2GlassyBroads