fall 2012

Put A Bird In It—Featured Maker, Struck

The WeMake crew is working hard to get things ready for our Put a Bird In It party and auction that will be taking place during Design Week Portland.  Local, national and international artists answered our call to action and created amazing birdhouses that will be auctioned off to help raise money for arts and music education in Portland schools. Its going to be one hell of a party too. 

Here is another look at one of the amazing birdhouses that will be available for auction from the team at Struck. They put a modern twist to their project and created a sleek, Mondrian themed house. Let’s take a look at how their house came together.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and the people working on this project.

I’m the guy at Struck with grown kids who needed help when they were young scouts putting together birdhouses. Maybe the nostalgia is what appealed to me. Plus, I like working with my hands and making things. I like the challenge of making something with narrow parameters and limited materials and tools.

Have you created 3D work before? 

Not extensively, although I’ve made some art assemblages in the past.

What are your influences and inspiration? What excites you about design?

I like the problem solving aspect of design. First and foremost this was a birdhouse. It had to be structurally sound and functional. Second, it was an auction item. It needed audience appeal. Third it was a piece of art. It needed to be unique and/or reflect cultural/architectural context.

What appeals to you in regards to this project?

It’s always a lot easier to make personal sacrifices when it’s for a good cause. I’m also an avid bird lover, so it was like doing two good causes.

Please give us a little detail about your process and approach to the project so far. What have you enjoyed about it?

I love challenging myself with puzzles and this was essentially a creative puzzle. I laid out the pieces and just stared at them for a while, making mental constructions and sketches. Then I started moving things around and putting them together using tape.

The Mid-century Modern idea seemed to make sense because I had limited access to wood-working tools and facilities, so keeping the shapes basic would simplify the construction and enable me to make it durable using glue. It would have been easier to just glue it all together, but I thought it would be nice if the roof could be taken off to clean the bird compartment and make repairs down the road. So I needed a configuration that would also allow the roof to be attached with screws.

Finally, the use of basic shapes in a retro-modern context seem to dictate the Mondrian color scheme. The last detail was a skylight using a cutout from the bottom of a Rubbermaid tub to allow for light and ventilation while giving protection from the elements and predators.

You can now see the entire collection of birdhouses out in the wild. Here is a list of the birdhouse, the artists and where they’re being featured here in Portland. More houses are being added all the time so check back often to find your favorites.

Portland Mini Maker Faire

The WeMake crew had a lot of fun this weekend at the Portland Mini Maker Faire, a two-day, family-friendly showcase of creativity and cool technology, and a celebration of the Maker movement. Our booth offered hands-on activities for kids where they helped paint and build community birdhouses.

Over the course of the event, children of all ages painted their artwork on pieces of wood donated by Woodcrafters. We actually ran out of wood on the first day and luckily were able to get more pieces from ADX! With a little help from our volunteers, the kids were able to build out some really cool birdhouses using all of the painted pieces. The results were some pretty stunning, kid-centric birdhouses that definitely make you smile.

After talking with the kids and parents who stopped by our booth, we learned many of them had either music or art—but not both at their schools, while others didn’t have any creative programs at all. It made us realize how important raising money during our auction really is. 

You can see the children’s birdhouses, as well as all of our artists’ creations at the WeMake Put a Bird In It auction and party taking place at Union/Pine on October 12th. We look forward to seeing you there!

Thank you to all our volunteers this weekend, and a huge thank you to our sponsors who provided the wood, art supplies and paper: Woodcrafters, ADX, OMSI, MUSE and West Coast Paper.

Put A Bird In It—Where to Find the Birdhouses

The birdhouses are in the wild! Each of them are installed throughout the city of Portland. Click below to see the birdhouses and where they will be living until the Put a Bird In It auction and party on Friday, October 12th. You can see them at Sidecar 11 , All Hands Raised , Muse Art & Design , The People’s Art of Portland Gallery , Redux , HiiH , Coava , Blackbird , Art Institute Gallery , Left Bank , Land Gallery, and OMSI .

We will keep adding birdhouses to this list as they come in.

You can also browse all of the birdhouses in this flickr set. We will be uploading more photos as we get them.


Chloe Miller + Simon Yuen

Installed at

Muse Art & Design


Ali Potvin

Installed at


Ali Potvin
Amy Ruppel
Always with Honor Birdhouse
Kolb Birdhouse
Burke Birdhouse
Ng Birdhouse

Brent Wick

Installed at


Wick Birdhouse
BT Birdhouse
Casey Ohngren Birdhouse
CINCO Birdhouse
Clutched Key Birdhouse
Crespin Birdhouse
Dan Lesage Birdhouse
arren Cools Birdhouse
Design Vessel Birdhouse
Design Vessel Birdhouse
Design Vessel Birdhouse
Emily Katz Birdhouse
Fashionbuddha Birdhouse
Fix Studio Birdhouse
FoGD Birdhouse
FoGD Birdhouse
Fred DiMeglio Birdhouse
Gravitate Design Birdhouse
Halle Cisco Birdhouse
HERENOW Birdhouse
HERENOW Birdhouse

Jeffery Frankenhauser + Nicole Marsh

Installed at


Jeffery Frankenhauser + Nicole Marsh Birdhouse
Jim Stadick Birdhouse
Josh Balleza Birdhouse
Kate Bingaman-Burt Birdhouse
Kathryn Alexander Birdhouse
Keegan Wenkman Birdhouse
Kelsey Worley Birdhouse
Leo Zarosinski Birdhouse
Lisa Hildebrant Birdhouse
Mary Kate McDevitt Birdhouse

Matt Ross

Installed at

Art Institute Gallery

Matt Ross Birdhouse

Meg Hunt

Installed at


Meg Hunt Birdhouse
Naso Birdhouse
Nemo Birdhouse
Nick Stokes Birdhouse
Patrick Woolworth Birdhouse
Storm Trooper Birdhouse
Peter Mclean Birdhouse
Pop Art Birdhouse
Pop Art Birdhouse
Pop Art Birdhouse
Britt Howard Birdhouse
Rosemary Robinson Birdhouse
Rory Phillips Birdhouse
Santiago Uceda Birdhouse
Scribble Tone Birdhouse
Sockeye Birdhouse
STRUCK Birdhouse

Team OR + Japan

Heath Korvola + Justus Wallen

Installed at

Art Institute Gallery

Team OR + Japan Birdhouse
The Glue Factory Birdhouse
The New Group Birdhouse
Theresa Arrison Birdhouse
Tim May Birdhouse
Tom OToole Birdhouse
Ziba Birdhouse
Ziba Birdhouse

Put A Bird In It—Featured Maker, Nemo Design

If you’re a bird (or human) with a sense of adventure, get ready to hit the road and go exploring with our latest Put a Bird In It birdhouse from Nemo Design.

Nemo is a brand strategy and design firm based here in Portland. They specialize in launching brands, re-focusing faded brands, and connecting brands with youthful audiences. When WeMake approached them to make a birdhouse for our auction, they had the perfect man for the job. 

Senior designer, Eugene Good — who is an artist with some serious skills in the wood shop, was up to the challenge. He gives us a peek into his process creating this incredibly detailed piece of art.

What was your inspiration for the birdhouse? 

With this particular project, I wanted to create something that would relate to Portland. I went with a travel theme tying in with the new trend of roving RV camps scattered around the city. The piece is named and branded after the state bird “Western Meadow Lark” which began in 1927. So with a nod to both the present and past, the birdhouse came together. I hope the lucky bidder takes joy in the transient birds that stop by the Meadow Lark RV. 

Have you created 3D artwork before? What did you find interesting or challenging about creating this birdhouse?

Yes, I’ve worked on a few installations as well as woodworking in general. Some of my previous work involved a lot of intricate carving. Those skills carried over to all the little details from trim styling to tiny windshield wipers. Creating the amount of detail for all 6 sides turned into 60+ hours of birdhouse madness.  

Please give us a little detail about your process and approach to the project. What have you enjoyed about it?

I always start in my sketchbook and gathering reference material. Then reel in the size/dimensions in illustrator, building a loose blueprint; this allows me to see where details need to go. Cutting, carving, gluing, sanding and painting ensues. 

I learn something new every time I break out my tools. So, I’d have to say building on my skill-set is one of the most rewarding sides of this project. 

The Meadow Lark RV is just one of the many amazing birdhouses that will be displayed around town starting in the next few days. Keep an eye on our blog for more photos and information about where you can see them all.

Our Put a Bird In It party will be kicking off during Design Week at Union/Pine on Friday, October 12th at 7:30pm. It is a FREE event and all the birdhouses will be available for purchase during our silent auction to support music and art programs in Portland public schools. See you there!