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Judges do not have the luxury of reading your team board. The more obvious your structure is the better it will resonate with the judges. We have found this is also wins over the public better. Its a great feeling when kids walk past your structure and know (and love) what it is.
Purity of Structure
It is important to stress that the structures be made entirely of CANs (with the exception to allow peanut butter). Use minimal props and non-CANned goods to convey your design. If your structure wins locally, this will help you win on the National level. There have been plenty of cool structures in past competitions that broke the rules and did not win. When using foam core or other quarter-inch leveling materials, recess them so they do not show as much. Note that leveling materials are signifiCANtly different than structural support.
When the national jury must select one winner from each category from 5 finalists in each category, these fine points become very important! At that point, it becomes a process of elimination.
How important is your written "Sculpture Description"? It CAN be the key to winning on the National level! The National Jury does not get the opportunity to walk around your sculpture and peer closely to see how it was CANstructed, delighting in the details. They only have the description to read while looking at the submitted photography. So, take the time to describe how your entry was built. Don't let the jury wonder about how you created your CANstructure. Be sure they know, by explaining how you accomplished it! Descriptions that help the Jury appreciate the structure are part of a winning strategy.
Practice, Practice, Practice!
It may look very easy to stack CANs one on top of the other, but trust us there is an art to it! Practice building PRIOR to set up at the site. Be prepared for something to go wrong! For example some CANs are damaged during shipping to a point they are unusable structurally and in appearance. It is strongly suggested that teams order/bring extra CANs, clear tape and other building materials. The CANstruction organization will not have any materials for you to build.
Photos are fun, but videos are even cooler and this includes timelapse videos. We would like to encourage teams to make timelapse videos and share them with us and on their social media pages.
There are many different ways to make timelapse videos. A few helpful notes and ideas below.
Timelapse maybe made from many photos or from a video that is sped up.
For photos, you should determine how many photos to take to make to look smooth and not choppy. To determine how often to take a photo, use this equation. Make sure to consider battery life of your camera (or phone). Some devices can take photos at given itervals. For others, its helpful to by an intervalometer.
BT/ (VL*FR) = PI
BT = Build Time (sec). The maximum will be 12 hours (43,200 sec), better to estimate the shortest time you think it will take. Worse case will result in a longer video than planned or you can speed up frame rate.
VL = Video Length (sec). Depends what you want to use it for. If you plan on a longer length, you can always process it at a faster frame rate to reduce the video length.
PI = Photo Interval (sec). Take one photo every X seconds.
FR = Frame Rate (photos/sec). Number of photos per second that make the video. 24 or 30 frames per second seems to be typical.
We will build for 12-hours and want a 90-sec video at 30fps. 43,200/ (90*30) = 16 seconds /photo (2700 photos)
A few Youtube videos describing the process.